From western forts to Victorian mansions and pivotal battlegrounds, the Texas Historical Commission's 20 state historic sites exemplify a breadth of Texas history. Come explore the real stories at the real places.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Caddo Mounds Site Improvements

By Jennifer L. Price, Caddo Mounds site manager

At Caddo Mounds State Historic Site, a cleanup project of the natural spring bed is currently underway. This spring was a prime resource for Caddo Indians from A.D. 700–1400, pioneers traveling along the El Camino Real de los Tejas, and Civilian Conservation Corps operations; later, it was the source of the Texas Forest Service's Indian Mound Nursery irrigation system for soil hydration. Today, managed by the Texas Historical Commission's (THC) Caddo Mounds State Historic Site, plans are in motion to provide future hiking trails leading visitors to the spring and other nearby features for an enhanced experience.

Another improvement at the site is the replacement of all property fences bordering the north side of Highway 21 with cedar split rail fencing. The fence was previously a combination of split rail and barbed wire. This project began in September 2010 with an archeological survey of the fence post holes to prevent any disturbance to sensitive archeological areas at Caddo Mounds.

Finally, a project that also began in 2010 will enhance the future of Caddo Mounds, visitor experiences, and Texas history. On April 26, 2010, the THC purchased the former 304 acres of the Texas Forest Service Indian Mound Nursery from Texas A&M University. This property is now being examined through the use of a magnetometer to identify any significant cultural remains beneath the soil. The magnetometer is a device capable of recording features under the surface of the ground that may indicate where the ancient Caddo Indians built houses or used cooking hearths. The survey is being conducted by Archaeo-Geophysical Associates, LLC.

Caddo Mounds State Historic Site is located outside Alto, Texas, 26 miles west of Nacogdoches. The site is part of the lush Pineywoods landscape of the Texas Forest Trail Region.

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