A Confederate Encampment at Cross Hollow, Benton County by ProQuest

VIEWS: 37 PAGES: 17

More Info
									         A Confederate Encampment at
         Cross Hollow, Benton County
JERRY HILLIARD, MIKE EVANS, JARED PEBWORTH, AND CARL CARLSON-
                           DREXLER

THE SCIENTIFIC INVESTIGATION OF AMERICAN BATTLEFIELDS and military
camps is a relatively recent endeavor for professional archaeologists, at
least compared to the study of other types of historical sites. Such studies
have yielded a phenomenal amount of detailed information not contained
in the archival record. Given how thoroughly the documentary record has
been mined by historians, the archaeology of Civil War sites may be the
primary source of further information about well-known battlefields and
encampments. It also offers an opportunity to learn about past conflicts
without relying exclusively on the accounts or reminiscences of the partic-
ipants, which can be shaded by the stress of war. For example, in Arkansas,
troop movements and battlefield lines at Prairie Grove and Pea Ridge have
been more precisely located by analyzing the distribution of artillery ord-
nance.1
     Unfortunately, for countless encampments, skirmish sites, and minor
battlefields, time may be running out for archaeologists. Every year many
sites are damaged or destroyed by development, relic hunters’ unsystem-
atic and ill-informed excavations, or, in some cases, both. What is lost—
although relic hunters often claim that they are “saving the past” by dig-

     1
      Douglas D. Scott, Richard A. Fox, Jr., Melissa A. Conner, and Dick Harmon,
Archaeological Perspectives on the Battle of the Little Bighorn (Norman: University of
Oklahoma Press, 1989); Malcolm D. Williamson, “Predictive Modeling of Civil War
Artillery Artifact Dispersion Using Geographic Information Systems” (honors thesis, Uni-
versity of Arkansas, 1993).

Jerry Hilliard is survey research associate, and Mike Evans and Jared Pebworth are archeological as-
sistants at the Arkansas Archeological Survey in Fayetteville. Carl Carlson-Drexler is an intern at the
College of William and Mary Center for Archeological Research.




THE ARKANSAS HISTORICAL QUARTERLY
VOL. LXVII, NO. 4, WINTER 2008
360              ARKANSAS HISTORICAL QUARTERLY

ging these threatened sites
								
To top