Archeology and the LBH May 16, 2011 12:56:16 GMT -5
Post by fuchs on May 16, 2011 12:56:16 GMT -5
Richard Fox attempts to justify the obvious compromise of the battlefield by souvenir hunters throughout the years, but imo his arguments fall far below the level of acceptability. As Clair mentioned, some areas, like LSH, the Keogh area, Finley Ridge & Calhoun Hill have been picked relatively clean. Early reports after the battle report piles of 28 to 40 cartridge cases on regular skirmish line intervals on the latter position. Today, only a very small handful have been recovered to mark the locations of this skirmish line. Where Fox really drops the ball concerns his inability to recognize the general pattern of relic hunting on the Battlefield. For one thing, most relic hunters will concentrate their efforts at known Cavalry positions, such as the 4 areas mentioned above. Secondly, these relic hunters will invariably pick up relics found at the surface (or very close to the surface) as opposed to those relics found deeper below the soil. The end result of this pattern would be a relatively large assortment of .45/55 cartridge cases picked up at these positions due to the fact that these relics would be found at or near the surface of the ground. The remaining artifacts lying deeper below the surface would include most of the incoming warrior bullets. A pattern of this type of relic hunting will certainly skew any archaeological study of the cartridge case and bullet sampling done at these positions.
Okay, I could certainly subscribe to that, a general underrepresentation of .45/70 cases due to souvenir hunting would make the numbers even better matching with the other sites. Are there some old maps with "known" soldier positions that could be compared with the locations of the archaeological finds?