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Archaeological Research

Introduction

Research Goals

Continuation of Project

Background and Significance

The Project (PACH)

2003 Field Season

2004 Field Season

2005 Field Season

 


Community
Development

 


Chocolá Archaeology: The Project's 2003 Field Season


Supported by the Earthwatch Institute, the New World Archaeological Foundation and several other sponsors, much was accomplished in 2003. Ten permanent benchmarks with a locational precision of less than a centimeter were placed strategically throughout the survey area to permit later mapping of the entire site.

With these benchmarks true distances between features (edifices, etc.) could be maintained even when immediately local mapping and grids for extensive excavation are established by chaining pin and metric tape. Reconnaissance and survey defined an area of at least 4 by 2 k of dense mounds and surface artifacts in and around the small village of Chocolá.

Excavations of 25 test pits distributed throughout the site recovered thousands of provenienced ceramics, lithics and ground stones, the great majority of the below-ground artifacts dating to the Middle and Late Preclassic periods or from ca. 900 BC to AD 200. Surface ceramics provided evidence of occupation in the Early Classic, Late Classic and Postclassic periods, as well.

In addition, in 2003 test pits in a large platform mound and a pyramidal mound in the northern precincts of the ancient city, the project discovered evidence of a subterranean canal system of highly sophisticated construction.

 

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