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TESTING PROCEDURES

A broad variety of procedures are available for investigating archaeological sites. Buildings structures or objects do not usually go through a “testing” phase to determine significance. With buildings, structures and objects significance is usually established through archival study and physical inspection. Archaeological sites, both prehistoric and historic, are subject to a different procedure.

The ability to advance our knowledge about the past can be impaired if an archaeological site has been badly disturbed, chemically contaminated, or otherwise compromised. This is offset by other factors, such as the rarity of the type of archaeological site under consideration. The purpose of testing in an archaeological site is to determine the condition of the deposit, and the ability of the site to advance our knowledge about the past.

A separate consideration for prehistoric sites is the potential for the presence of Native American human interments. The disinterment of Native American human remains, no matter how respectfully accomplished, is always a very sensitive subject. We can identify the potential for human interments in any archaeological deposit. Once the presence or absence of human interments has been established, other factors can be more easily resolved.

Archaeological testing can determine the importance of an archaeological site, its ability to enhance our knowledge of the past, and define its general constituents, including the presence or absence of human remains.

Archaeological Resource Service
613 Martin Avenue, Suite 101 Rohnert Park, California 94928
Phone: (707) 586-2577 Fax: (707) 586-2580
Email: info@digsmart.com

Copyright 2003-2017 Archaeological Resource Service
The information provided herein is for general background purposes only and is not intended as a definitive statement of either the presence or absence of archaeological deposits on any particular property or the handling thereof.  It is not a substitute for professional investigation and advice and should not be relied upon as such.

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