Archaeology At Historic Nance Farm: Data Recovery And Analysis At A Nineteenth-century Agricultural Homestead In Desoto, Texas




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Excavations at the Historic Nance Farm were undertaken as part of a 2002 University of Texas at Arlington field school. The research design included questions surrounding the rotation of the house, how material culture changed as a result of the railroad system, and whether historical data can be used to check the archaeological data. Intrasite stratigraphic integrity was significantly compromised, but inspection of the artifacts revealed patterns suggesting a narrowly defined period during which the site was first occupied. As a result, the debate over the privileging of anthropology over history, which was once thought to be central to this thesis, has since been reviewed. It was determined that a conjunctive approach for historical sites, especially those with compromised site integrity, is the best course of action. This also raised the issue of perspective when investigating historic archaeological sites and the difficulty in remaining objective in these endeavors.