Week 6 (February 26 – March 3, 2024)

Another full week of beautiful weather and no rain. At the end of the week, we finished excavation in Vanilla, Maple, and Cream. Vanilla still has drawings to be done. The only excavations still open are in Coffee and in the reservoir to the southwest of Coffee (which was opened this week).

Deep in the back of the rear trench in Vanilla, the intrusive burial that cut into the building (found last week) was excavated and drawn. Its removal occasioned the discovery of the northern part of a cut-through crypt that contained two intact vessels (a bowl and a dish) as well as several flamingo-tongue shells. A similar bowl and plate combination were found in an empty and infilled crypt in the eastern building in Coffee (but without any bone). In Maple the crypt in the east building also contained two pottery vessels, a tobacco flask and what appears to be a cylinder; six jadeite beads were also recovered from this interment (jadeite inlaid teeth were found last week). Besides the rear infilled crypt (with two vessels) in the fill of the Coffee east building, the remains of other face caches were also recovered in front of the structure in the plaza just west of the original three deposits. To the west of these face caches in the plaza were a series of large capstones running north to south. The capstones covered a deep cut into bedrock and it took until Saturday for the excavators to finally reach what appears to be the level of the interment.

This week also had Rumari leaving to go back to her desk job at the IOA on Thursday after a two week stint in the field and lab at Caracol. She was a great addition to the project. Melissa Badillo (IOA Director) and her colleagues came to pick her up and she gave everyone a tour of the residential groups being excavated this field season.

We were also visited on Saturday by Amy Thompson, her student Chris Plotts, and John Walden – all of whom went out after lunch with Adrian to see the 2024 excavations and to get a better sense of Caracol, its residential groups, and what a neighborhood might look like.

Florencio and Gabiela in rear of east trench in Vanilla with new lower crypt in background
Adrian, drawing section, and Edwin, excavating burial, in Maple
The Belize Institute of Archaeology at Maple: Paul, Rumari, Kathleen, Melissa, and Joyce (left to right)
Sonia plotting a point at Cream residential group while Edwin supervises
Declan in western excavation in Coffee residential group
Rumari explained the northern excavation in Coffee to Gena, Sonia, and Declan
Gena drawing the front capstones in the eastern excavation in Coffee with Saul and Jerry excavating in the background
Jaime excavating the cut under the capstones in the eastern excavation in Coffee while Jerry watches
Adrian lays out his excavations over the reservoir near Coffee
Excavation of the reservoir near Coffee with Sonia in the foreground and Reynaldo, Jorge, and Carlos in the background
Adrian with his colleagues Amy Thompson and John Waldon with Amy’s student Chris Plotts to the right

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