Historic Images from the National Forests and Grasslands in Texas

The photo archive of historic images from the National Forests and Grasslands in Texas  (NFGT) has been digitized, and the images are available for download under a Creative Commons License in ScholarWorks – https://scholarworks.sfasu.edu/nfgt_general/

Using modern tools, a composite image of the grounds where the current NFGT Supervisor’s Office resides was assembled, providing a view of that landscape from 1938 (below and header). By using the embedded Google Map, and clicking on show satellite imagery at the bottom left of that map, you can see just how much this site has changed through the years.


There are some important images associated with regional history that are included in the gallery. A great example of this an image of the El Camino Real that passed through the Sabine National Forest (click on the images below to learn more, including the option to download them at multiple resolutions).


El Camino Real – Sabine National Forest.
Photographer: Unknown

Another important moment in history for the NFGT was the introduction of prescribed burns. There are a few great images of prescribed fires included in the gallery; however, it appears that they may have a photograph of the first prescribed fire on the Angelina National Forest, along with some of the Civilian Conservation Corps volunteers who were learning how to conduct the burns.

Controlled burn – Fire #1 – Angelina National Forest.
Photographer: Erwin A. Heers
Hose Fire CCC – Angelina National Forest.
Photographer: Unknown

Another noteworthy image is of the first house that was built in Shelby County, Texas. There are several other images of local architecture that are included in the gallery, to include the interior of the first Protestant Church in East Texas, examples of special use cabins, and some images of the Aldridge Saw Mill ruins in 1935.

The first house to be built in Shelby County, Texas – Built about 150 years ago [before the image was taken in 1938]. Photo shows present tenant and her youngest child – Close to Sabine National Forest.
Photographer: Muir, Bluford

For the archaeologists and historians, there is even an early (ca. 1938) image of Mound C at the George C. Davis site included in the gallery, which is not restricted only to the forests, but also includes additional historic images from the surrounding area.

Davis Site – Mound C- An Indian Mound of the Neches [Caddo] Indians. This mound is located close to Kings Highway, Route 21, and is just outside the boundary of Davy Crockett National Forest. Recreational Assistant Heers is standing on top of the mound. The Indians were expelled from here in 1839 – Near Davy Crockett National Forest.
Photographer: Muir, Bluford

In total, there are over 1500 images included in the digital gallery. The images are organized chronologically (earliest images will be in the last pages), and those images without a date appear in the first few pages. I encourage you to browse the gallery, and share or download some of these important records of local regional heritage.

This project was funded through Participating Agreement 15-PA-11081300-32 between the Center for Regional Heritage Research at Stephen F. Austin State University, and the National Forests and Grasslands in Texas. All images are available for download on ScholarWorks, and are distributed under a Creative Commons Attribution-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.






robert z selden jr, caddo, archaeology, biface, george c davis, caddo mounds state historic site, nagpra, museum studies, lithic, stone tool, archaeology, culture heritage, cultural heritage, history

Preprint available for study of Gahagan biface morphology

New paper in-press at Digital Applications in Archaeology and Cultural Heritage with John Dockall and Harry Shafer on the morphological variability of Gahagan bifaces. View and download the preprint here, or by clicking on the image below.


This analysis of Gahagan biface morphology enlists the three largest samples of Gahagan bifaces, to include that of the type site (Gahagan Mound) as well as the Mounds Plantation and George C. Davis sites. Results indicate a significant difference in Gahagan biface morphology at the Mounds Plantation site when compared with Gahagan bifaces from the Gahagan Mound and George C. Davis sites. Tests for allometry and asymmetry were not significant. The test of morphological disparity indicates that Gahagan bifaces produced at the Mounds Plantation site occupy a more restricted range of morphospace than those produced at Gahagan Mound, providing evidence for standardisation and diversity in Caddo biface production. While the sample includes a wide range of variability, the test of morphological integration indicates that Gahagan bifaces are significantly integrated, meaning that those traits used to characterise their shape (blade and base) vary in a coordinated manner. These results articulate with a shift in Caddo bottle morphology over the same geography, potentially indicating two previously unrecognised and morphologically-distinct lithic and ceramic production areas.



Archaeology Maxent ENMeval predictive model site potential model

Call for Volunteers–Test of an Archaeological Site Potential Model

The National Forests and Grasslands in Texas and the Center for Regional Heritage Research would like to invite you to participate in a large public archaeology/outreach opportunity from February 18 – March 3, 2018 (two one-week sessions) to test and evaluate an archaeological site potential model for the Davy Crockett National Forest (http://www.passportintime.com/site-testing-on-the-davy-crockett-2018.html). This is a national call for volunteers, and is limited to 40 participants; however, we wanted to open the opportunity to locally-interested colleagues and students in advance of the formal announcement (no prior experience required). Registration is required by January 1, 2018 for all participants through the USFS Passport in Time website. Register by visiting the link above and filling out the short application using the Apply Now tab immediately below the image of the dart points.

Additional information included in the link above.



‘1999 Reburial at Mission San Juan Capistrano, San Antonio, Texas’ by Steve A. Tomka and José E. Zapata


On November 15, 1999, the Center for Archaeological Research (CAR), The University of Texas at San Antonio, returned 122 curation boxes containing human remains of between 103 and 125 individuals to Monsignor Balthazar Janacek, Archdiocese Director, Old Spanish Missions. These remains had been obtained during two previous Witte Memorial Museum excavations at Mission San Juan Capistrano. Subsequently, CAR returned the majority of the burial goods associated with these human remains to Monsignor Janacek. CAR then entered into an agreement with the Archdiocese of San Antonio to locate and monitor the excavation of the two reburial areas that were to coincide with two previously excavated areas. The location and monitoring of the reburial areas began on November 22, 1999. The reburial of the human remains and associated artifacts occurred on November 27, 1999. Present at the reburial ceremony were representatives of the Archdiocese of San Antonio, the National Park Service, the American Indians of Texas at the Spanish Colonial Missions, a member of CAR, and member of the press and public.



robert z selden jr, geometric morphometric, reverse engineer, 3d, 3d scan, 3d model

RevEng/Grave Markers

This article discusses how to create (using free software) 3D models of historic grave markers, which can be used to explore the effects of various preservation treatments, tracking slope in markers that may soon become unstable, and reverse-engineering elements that may have been lost or damaged. This is the first in a series of articles that will focus on grave markers from the Oak Grove Cemetery in Nacogdoches, Texas. Many thanks to those that offered comments on this manuscript while in prep. Additionally, I would like to thank Ben Ford and the folks at the Society for Historical Archaeology’s Technical Briefs in Historical Archaeology for their willingness to push the boundaries of traditional publication by including 3D figures.

To download the article, simply click on the image of the first page below. To activate the 3D content, you will need to save it to your computer, then open it in Adobe Acrobat or Adobe Reader.


There are a variety of how-to videos distributed by Autodesk that highlight how to make your own 3D models (see below). I encourage you to get out and give it a try!

123D Catch – Create your first project –> click here

123D Catch – Create Your Own 3D Model: Planning your shoot –> click here 

123D Catch – Shooting and Image Upload –> click here 

123D Catch – Navigating your model –> click here 

123D Catch – Manual Stitching –> click here

123D Catch – Creating Animations –> click here 

123D Catch – Mesh Details –> click here 

123D Catch – Reference Points –> click here 

123D Catch – Custom Coordinate System –> click here 

123D Catch – Custom Scene Scale –> click here

Autodesk 123D – 3D Printing your 123D Catch with a MakerBot –> click here