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Geoarchaeological Investigation of Human Remains, Brazoria County, Texas

During the summer of 2009, human remains were recovered from the bottom (approximately 10 m below sea level) of a sand quarry near Freeport, Texas. After the remains were confirmed as prehistoric by the local law enforcement agency and a local archaeological association, Dr. Michael B. Collins of The Gault School of Archaeological Research was contacted. Dr. Collins recogized the potential of this find to increase the understanding of early prehistoric inhabitants in this region and possibly in North America, and accordingly, assembled a group of esteemed researchers and eager volunteers to help investigate.

Dr. Collins was assisted by Drs. Tom Stafford, Jack Rink, Eske Willerslev, and Jon Lohse, as well as a group of volunteers representing CAS and Texas State University, the University of Wyoming, the University of Oklahoma, Stephen F. Austin State University, Northeast Lakeview College, San Antonio, and The Houston Museum of Natural Science. The team spent two days examining sediments and profiles, recording precise three-dimensional measurements, collecting samples for radiocarbon and optically stimulated luminescence dating, and taking samples for additional dating and DNA analysis.