Presentation Title

Imaging Archaeological Artifacts from San Salvador in Colton, CA, Buried During The Great Flood of 1862, Using Ground Penetrating Radar

Faculty Mentor

Jascha Polet

Start Date

17-11-2018 12:30 PM

End Date

17-11-2018 2:30 PM

Location

CREVELING 17

Session

POSTER 2

Type of Presentation

Poster

Subject Area

physical_mathematical_sciences

Abstract

San Salvador was the largest settlement along the Old Spanish Trail between New Mexico and Los Angeles during the early 1840s. In the flood of 1862, the Santa Ana River washed away or buried settlers’ adobe homes and belongings. Our goal is to use geophysical subsurface imaging techniques to help the Spanish Town Heritage Foundation in assessing the potential for buried artifacts and possibly documenting the cultural importance of this site, before development is implemented by the City of Colton.

For our research, we are conducting surveys using Ground Penetrating Radar (GPR). This equipment allows us to image or detect buried adobe structures, household cookware, and metallic farming tools in the shallow subsurface. Artifacts are anticipated to be at a depth of 4 meters based on historical archives. The GPR antenna allows imaging to a depth of approximately 7 meters. Since we began our survey in April 2018, 60 profiles have been recorded, each with an approximate length of 100 meters. The site has little topography and is mostly covered in sand, minimizing data collection and processing issues. We expected GPR to be successful because it can penetrate this surface material, and because the physical properties of the buried artifacts that we expect to image are distinct from those of the soil in which they are currently buried. We have detected several anomalies within 500 meters of the Santa Ana River, near the base of La Loma Hills. One anomaly suggests the presence of “adobe melt” from buried structures and another a buried canal. We will focus our investigation on this part of the site and use different geophysical techniques to confirm and further image these anomalies.

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Nov 17th, 12:30 PM Nov 17th, 2:30 PM

Imaging Archaeological Artifacts from San Salvador in Colton, CA, Buried During The Great Flood of 1862, Using Ground Penetrating Radar

CREVELING 17

San Salvador was the largest settlement along the Old Spanish Trail between New Mexico and Los Angeles during the early 1840s. In the flood of 1862, the Santa Ana River washed away or buried settlers’ adobe homes and belongings. Our goal is to use geophysical subsurface imaging techniques to help the Spanish Town Heritage Foundation in assessing the potential for buried artifacts and possibly documenting the cultural importance of this site, before development is implemented by the City of Colton.

For our research, we are conducting surveys using Ground Penetrating Radar (GPR). This equipment allows us to image or detect buried adobe structures, household cookware, and metallic farming tools in the shallow subsurface. Artifacts are anticipated to be at a depth of 4 meters based on historical archives. The GPR antenna allows imaging to a depth of approximately 7 meters. Since we began our survey in April 2018, 60 profiles have been recorded, each with an approximate length of 100 meters. The site has little topography and is mostly covered in sand, minimizing data collection and processing issues. We expected GPR to be successful because it can penetrate this surface material, and because the physical properties of the buried artifacts that we expect to image are distinct from those of the soil in which they are currently buried. We have detected several anomalies within 500 meters of the Santa Ana River, near the base of La Loma Hills. One anomaly suggests the presence of “adobe melt” from buried structures and another a buried canal. We will focus our investigation on this part of the site and use different geophysical techniques to confirm and further image these anomalies.