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Kneeling Left to Right: Pat Aucoin, unidentified, Jan Devault, Gregg Dimmick, Roger Moore, Linda Gorski
Standing Left to Right: Beth Aucoin, unidentified, unidentified, Dick Gregg, Douglas Mangum, Michael Strutt, Gary Wiggins, Congressman John Culberson, TPWD Park Superintendent Russ Kuykendall, Sheldon Kindall, Louis Aulbach, Darren Schubert, April Smith


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Dropped Brown Bess Bayonet from the Almonte surrender site.


San Jacinto Battleground

Archeology



The San Jacinto Battleground Association has participated in the most comprehensive archeological survey of the battleground ever attempted. This survey includes land both within and outside the state-owned San Jacinto Battleground State Historic Site. Over the past several years hundreds of battle-related artifacts have been uncovered. The interpretation of these artifacts will change the known history of the battle while simultaneously assisting in the delineation of the boundaries of the battleground. The landscape on which the battle was fought is both limited in scope and endangered. As new archeology and "ground truthing" technologies emerge, secrets now in the ground can be extracted. We are concerned, however, that new construction and industrial encroachment will forever ruin these future opportunities. Several foundations and corporations have generously supported our archeology projects, including the American Battlefield Protection Program of the National Park Service to survey the NRG property south of the state-owned land. This survey uncovered what is believed to be Col. Juan Almonte's surrender site. The results of this survey, led by Houston archeologist Roger Moore, received national and international news coverage preceding and following the 2009 Battle of San Jacinto Symposium where the survey was publicly revealed for the first time.

  • June 16, 2009 - Follow up on the Day of Archeology at San Jacinto

    More work in Block 2 following up on finds during Garrett Day. Friends’ volunteers returned and used a MineLab metal detector to see if deeper artifacts could be found. Headed by Douglas Mangum, MAC. The San Jacinto Battleground Association obtained needed grants and donations and provided volunteer metal detectorists. Many more artifacts were found in Block 2 with the MineLab metal detector. This was in spite of the fact that the conditions were less than favorable. The ground was hot and dry but we were finding deeper artifacts in an area that had been heavily metal detected.

  • June 7, 2009 - Prairie Restoration

    Prairie restoration—Dr. Roger Moore, Douglas Mangum, MAC; Michael Strutt, TPWD. Phase two of the prairie restoration project to check the large areas (about one hundred and twenty acres) of prairie that will be restored to the natural prairie that existed in 1836. The San Jacinto Battleground Association obtained needed grants and donations and provided volunteer metal detectorists. Debris found; the only battle-related artifact was a lead musket ball.

  • June 6, 2009 - Day of Archeology at San Jacinto

    "Garret Day"---Garrett Electronics, Inc. sponsored a day of archeology at San Jacinto. All work was planned by MAC staff and accomplished under the direct supervision of MAC and TPWD. The survey was “Block 2” and several of the adjacent blocks that surround it but were as yet not completed. The San Jacinto Battleground Association obtained needed grants and donations and provided volunteer metal detectorists. One of the most exciting finds appeared to be another canister end. It was iron but was slightly different from the two that had been found previously—it had what looked like four square holes in it as if it had been attached to something with square nails or spikes. Also found were a large number of musket balls, a cartridge box buckle, a pocket knife with wooden handle and a plain brass button.

  • April-June 2009 - 13 Acre Tract Investigation

    Archeologists from Moore Archeological Consulting, Inc. conducted a reconnaissance involving metal detecting and then an intensive pedestrian area survey of a 13 acre tract on the southwestern edge of the San Jacinto Battleground State Historic Site along the shore of Buffalo Bayou and owned by the Coastal Water Authority. The purpose of this survey was twofold: first, to examine the tract to see if it contained artifacts related to the battle of San Jacinto, and second, to see if the site contained other historic or prehistoric artifacts. The San Jacinto Battleground Association obtained needed grants and donations and provided volunteer metal detectorists. No artifacts related to either the battle, other historic nineteenth century, or prehistoric resources were recovered during the two phases of the investigation . Nor could any evidence of two prehistoric sites previously recorded within the tract be relocated. Historic debris dating to the twentieth century was observed throughout much of the tract and numerous structural remnants were noted within the property. ARCHEOLOGICAL INVESTIGATIONS OF THE 13 ACRE COASTAL WATER AUTHORITY PROPERTY ON BUFFALO BAYOU, HARRIS COUNTY, TEXAS by Douglas G. Mangum, Project Archeologist, & Roger G. Moore, Principal Investigator / Texas Antiquities Permit Number 5233 / Report of Investigations Number 561 / October 2009

  • April 18, 2009 - Battle of San Jacinto Symposium

    This symposium was held at the University of Houston. It was organized by The San Jacinto Battleground Association who obtained grants and donations to present this symposium. Speakers included Dr. Roger Moore, Douglas Mangum, Michael Strutt (filling in for Dr. Douglas Scott), Manuel Hinojosa and Gregg Dimmick. Announced the results on the NRG site.

  • March 2009 - Magnetometer Survey of the NRG Site

    Magnetometer survey of the NRG site—Jim Bruseth, Mark Denton, Bill Pierson, Texas Historical Commission; Michael Strutt, TPWD; Roger Moore, Douglas Mangum, Moore Archeological Consulting Inc. A magnetometer study of the NRG site was undertaken to see if there was more ferrous material at the site. Texas Historical Commission provided the magnetometer. The magnetometer study showed a nearly clean site indicating that the metal detectors had essentially located all the iron artifacts. (Lead, brass, and other non-ferrous metals will not show up on the magnetometer study.

  • February, March, June 2009 - Section 106 Visitor Center Locations

    Section 106/visitor center locations. Brockington and Associates, Inc., Scott Butler, Principal Investigator; Roger Moore PhD, CoPrincipal Investigator; Douglas Mangum; sponsored by TPWD. Sites for a proposed new visitor’s center were investigated by Brockington and Associates, Atlanta, Georgia, experts in battlefield archeology. They were hired to investigate proposed sites for a visitors center. Areas investigated include the area along Juan Seguin Blvd. On June 9, the work was confined to the area north of the monument. Some artificial fill was moved to expose the natural soil but that had not been done when the volunteers helped on that day. San Jacinto Battleground Association obtained needed grants and donations and provided volunteer metal detectorists. Multiple artifacts were found in the area south of the monument along Juan Seguin Blvd suggestive of activity both from the cavalry skirmish of April 20, 1836 and from the battle on April 21.

  • February 10, 2009 - Prairie Restoration Survey along Juan Seguin Blvd

    Prairie restoration survey along Juan Seguin Blvd./Vista Rd .—As part of the Master Plan, TPWD is planning to restore the natural prairie as it was in 1836. As part of this effort, they are taking out the trees along Juan Seguin Blvd and herbiciding a large area and then replanting with native grasses. The area of concentration on this day was the area where the trees will be removed. Survey lead by MAC and TPWD. The San Jacinto Battleground Association obtained needed grants and donations and provided volunteer metal detectorists. Artifacts were found in the area, fairly close to the monument.

  • December 1, 2007 - NRG Property – Search for elements of the Mexican Army

    Ascertain if elements of the Mexican Army retreat existed on the NRG property, 1.5 miles south of the battleground, near Peggy Lake. Roger Moore, PhD, Principal Investigator, and Douglas Mangum, Project Archeologist, Moore Archeological Consulting, Inc. The area had been suggested by Gary Wiggins, who was aware that artifacts were found in that area in the past. The area was so overgrown a “wood gator” machine was brought in to cut five, eight foot wide swaths across the property. In phase one many artifacts were found, in what seemed to be a linear feature, cutting across two of the swaths. NRG graciously funded a phase two study in which a new swath was cut, in a zipper like pattern, parallel to the linear artifact pattern. Each time the new swath cut across the linear pattern new artifacts were found. This reinforced the fact that the artifacts were dropped in a linear pattern. Phase three was performed by using the wood gator to clean a large rectangular area that seemed to include most of the pattern of artifacts. The San Jacinto Battleground Association obtained needed grants and donations and provided volunteer metal detectorists. An extraordinary number of artifacts were found in the area with the vast majority in a distinct linear pattern. By far the most common musket balls were Mexican and they were nearly all “drops” or unfired rounds. Many of the balls were found in clusters, suggesting they were dropped in a group from cartridge boxes. Many other artifacts were found: pewter dragoon buttons; chin strap scales, a straight razor; gun tools, eight bayonets (including a very short bayonet that might have been used as a knife); multiple pieces of brass insignia that seemed to have come from a cavalry helmet; a grenadier exploding bomb insignia; cartridge box buckles; plain brass buckles; one spur; eating utensils; a Spanish style horseshoe; Guerrero Battalion shako plate; sword hanger buckle and much more.

    In preparation. The official announcement made a worldwide media splash with some 25-30 newspapers in the US and other countries carrying the story. The site is likely the location where Colonel Juan Almonte gathered together 200-400 fleeing Mexican soldiers. Accounts indicated that he got them into ranks and ordered them to drop all their gear and weapons. He then proceeded to march them out of the woods and surrender to the Texans. Further surveys in the area should better define the limits of the site. It is also likely that similar, albeit smaller sites might exist in the area.

  • December-January 2006 - Ground truthing for the magnetometer and GPR studies

    Ground truthing for the magnetometer and GPR studies was undertaken on a Saturday and Sunday – this area was around the cemetery and very near the Battleship Texas. It was conducted by Douglas Mangum, Moore Archaeological Consulting, Inc. This project was funded by grants and donations obtained by The San Jacinto Battleground Association who also provided volunteer metal detectorists. Battle related artifacts found in the area included a brass stirrup, many dropped lead musket balls that appeared to be Mexican, and a silver Mexican coin that seemed to be a one half real. These Mexican artifacts, found near the Texian cemetery, could be at or near the Mexican prisoner-of-war camp.

  • November-December 2006 - Magnetometer & Ground penetrating radar studies

    Magnetometer and Ground Penetrating Radar (GPR) studies conducted in the area of the Texian campsite and Mexican prisoner of war camp on the bank of Buffalo bayou near the location of the Battleship Texas. This project was funded through grants and donations obtained by The San Jacinto Battleground Association. The magnetometer study noted one hundred fifty six anomalies. Two of the anomalies were suspected to be possible cannon balls or canister; two were felt to be possible campfire remains; two were interpreted to have a signature suggestive of burials. The GPR study revealed numerous buried features which were suspected including possible graves, fire hearths or burned areas, a rectangular structure of unknown significance, multiple buried metal objects and possible metal scatters.

    The report for the magnetic study is San Jacinto Battleground State Historic Site Magnetic Survey, Harris County Texas by Kendal McDonald, M.A., November 28, 2006 – December 4, 2006. The report for the GPR is Report on Ground Penetrating Radar Surveys: San Jacinto Battleground, Deer Park, Texas – January 5, 2007, prepared by Jennie Sturm. A summary of the reports: Synthesis and Summary on Geophysical Surveys: San Jacinto Battleground, Deer Park, Texas – January 5, 2007, prepared by Jennie Sturm, TAG Research by Sturm Inc.

  • February 11, 2006 - Large scale survey of the prairie area

    This large scale survey of the Prairie area to the Southeast of previously surveyed locations near the Sam Houston marker. The areas surveyed were toward the head of Boggy Bayou. Lead by Roger Moore and Douglas Mangum of Moore Archeological Consulting, Inc. and Michael Strutt of Texas Parks & Wildlife. The San Jacinto Battleground Association obtained needed grants and donations and provided volunteer metal detectorists. A few musket balls were located over a very wide area. Surprisingly few artifacts were found in an area that seemed to have been possible locations for the breastworks or one of the prime pathways of the fleeing Mexican soldiers. Some of the areas seemed disturbed but for the most part the soils appeared to be intact.

  • November 5, 2005 - Search for Texian Camp

    The search for evidence of the location of the Texian camp on the San Jacinto Battleground was headed by Roger Moore, PhD and Douglas Mangum of Moore Archeological Consulting, Inc. The San Jacinto Battleground Association obtained needed grants and donations and provided volunteer metal detectorists. The small area surveyed was near the Headquarters buildings of the park, to the North, along Buffalo Bayou. We were looking for evidence of the Texian camp but no specifically battle related artifacts were found. There were many iron artifacts and some concrete suggestive of previous nineteenth or twentieth century structures. The large iron artifacts could represent blacksmith or farming in the area.

  • May 7 - August 2005 - Peggy Lake Survey

    Peggy Lake Survey lead by project archeologist, Douglas Mangum and Principal Investigator, Roger Moore, Moore Archeological Consulting, Inc; Michael Strutt, Texas Parks & Wildlife. The San Jacinto Battleground Association obtained needed grants and donations and provided volunteer metal detectorists. This survey was a continuation of the Peggy Lake shore survey undertaken by Hicks and Company in the summer of 2003. Multiple lead musket balls were found along with two brass buckles, a percussion cap, and some lead sheets. The most interesting item was a decorated copper plate of unknown origin.

  • April 23, 2004 - Battle of San Jacinto Symposium

    The Battle of San Jacinto Symposium held at the University of Houston. Speakers included Jim Burton, Ted Hollingsworth and Michael Strutt from Texas Parks & Wildlife. A press conference announced that archeology was being conducted at San Jacinto Battleground and multiple artifacts had been found. Note: The videos of the platform speakers can be found on this website under the Symposium tab. The symposium was funded through grants, donations, and tickets. It was organized and conducted by The San Jacinto Battleground Association.

  • January-June 2004 - Archeology investigation to locate Mexican Army campsite

    Archeology investigation on the San Jacinto Battleground with the specific goal of locating artifacts that would lead to the Mexican Army campsite. Lead by Moore Archeological Consulting, Inc., Roger Moore, PhD principal investigator; Joe Sanchez, Project Archeologist, Texas Parks & Wildlife – Michael Strutt. The San Jacinto Battleground Association provided volunteer metal detectorists. January 31, 2004 was the first official day of archeology on the San Jacinto Battleground: four musket balls, all dropped (showing no signs of having been fired), one Texan and three Mexican, one Mexican Eagle button. For the next five months, investigations were in the area of the Mexican campsite/retreat, mostly southeast of the San Jacinto Monument. A large number of artifacts were found, the most exciting of which incuded: an eight real silver coin – minted in Zacatecas in 1834; two Guerrero Battalion chest plates; two Cazadores horn emblems; another Mexican coin; ramrods; a bayonet; brass buckles; a spur; many musket balls – some having been fired and a few with imbedded bone; and two iron canister plates that likely were part of canister shot fired from the Twin Sisters. The results of this controlled survey actrually did not pinpoint the exact site of the Mexican campsite or the Mexican breastworks. It did, however, prove that a large number of artifacts remained from the battle. As a result of this work, the reenactment of the battle was moved to the Northwest side of the property.

  • Summer 2003 - Metal Detecting – Along the bank of Peggy Lake

    The project was lead by Hicks & Company, Supervisory Archeologists. The principal investigator was James Karbula, PhD. Project requested by Texas Parks & Wildlife – Michael Strutt. The San Jacinto Battleground Association provided volunteer metal detectorists. More musket balls were found. They appeared to be dropped balls consistent with the fact that this should be in the area of the “flight” of the Mexican Army; A silver coin with the inscription “…atta Regina.”; a flat brass button; a brass ramrod pipe; metal strap buckle-all pictured it the report. Other various artifacts that appear to be related to the battle and flight were found as well.

    Reports: Archeological and Historical Research at the San Jacinto Battleground: Vol I – The Roads to San Jacinto; Research Investigations for the Harrisburg-Lynchburg and New Washington Roads. Rachael Feit & John Clark, Hicks and Company; Archeological and Historical Research at the San Jacinto Battleground: Vol II – Metal detecting Along the Path of the Mexican Retreat at San Jacinto, James W. Karbula, Jonathan Jarvis and Rachel Feit, Hicks and Company, June 2004.

  • October 2, 2002 - Metal Detecting – Scouting Expedition

    Metal detecting in the area of Peggy’s Lake area and Buffalo Bayou. This was a one day project requested by Texas Parks & Wildlife to determine if artifacts still exist from the Battle of San Jacinto. The San Jacinto Battleground Association provided volunteer metal detectorists. There were a small number of artifacts found along Peggy Lake – A Mexican Eagle Button; Texian Trigger Guard; brass sling buckle; brass cartridge box buckle; spoon handle with a stamped Mexican Eagle; several musket balls. Along Buffalo Bayou (near the park restrooms are located) – one large lead musket ball.

    A photo only report was prepared by Terry Kisler. Intensive Metal Detecting on Peggy Lake, Harris County, Texas, by Douglas Mangum and Roger Moore dated September 2006, the appendix includes the Kisler photos. Report submitted to Texas Parks and Wildlife.


PLEASE NOTE: IT IS ILLEGAL IN TEXAS TO CONDUCT ARCHEOLOGICAL SURVEYS OR METAL DETECTING ON PUBLIC LAND WITHOUT AN ANTIQUITIES CODE PERMIT FROM THE TEXAS HISTORICAL COMMISSION. THESE LAWS ARE STRICTLY ENFORCED. FOR MORE INFORMATION, VISIT: TEXAS HISTORICAL COMMISSION.




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