The Cedar Grove site (state site number 3LA97) was located in Lafayette County on the banks of the Red River. The site, consisting of both a late Caddo farmstead (with an accompanying cemetery) and an early twentieth century African-American cemetery, was discovered during construction of the Field Revetment by the New Orleans District of the Corps of Engineers. As the site was slated for destruction, both components had to be moved. Excavations were conducted intermittently between June of 1980 and June of 1982 by a comprehensive interdisciplinary team that recovered data on the historic remains, settlement systems, lithics, ceramics, geomorphology, chronology, floral and faunal remains, pigments and bioarchaeology.
Because they were carefully excavated by archeologists, we can find out a lot of information about who these people were and what their lives were like. Those who were laid to rest at the historic-period Cedar Grove Cemetery were reburied within one day of their exhumation as per an agreement with the elders of the Cedar Grove Bapitist Church. The prehistoric-period burials and associated materials are slated to be repatriated to the Caddo Nation.
The Cedar Grove site also shows us how dynamic the Red River is and has been over time. These two sites, once on the banks of the Red River, laid buried under flood deposits for almost 100 years before the river again exposed the remains.
THEFT ALERT: Twenty-seven pots were stolen from the SAU Research Station in 2006. Click the link for a PDF showing the stolen items. Click here for vessel descriptions.
If you have information pertaining to the whereabouts of any of these items, please contact the Survey at (870) 235-4230.
Schambach, Frank F., Neal L. Trubowitz, Frank Rackerby, E. Thomas Hemmings, W. Frederick Limp, and John E. Miller III
1982 “Test Excavations at the Cedar Grove Site (3LA97): A Late Caddo Farmstead in the Great Bend Region, Southwest Arkansas,” In Contributions to the Archeology of the Great Bend Region (edited by Frank F. Schambach and Frank Rackerby). Arkansas Archeological Survey Research Series No. 22. Fayetteville, Arkansas.
Trubowitz, Neal L. (editor)
1984 Cedar Grove. Arkansas Archeological Survey Research Series No. 23. Fayetteville, Arkansas.
Rose, Jerome C. (editor)
1985 Gone to a Better Land. Arkansas Archeological Survey Research Publication No. 25.