Archaeological Investigations for the Nashville Sounds Baseball Stadium
TRC conducted archaeological monitoring to ensure significant archaeological deposits were not impacted during site development.
The new Nashville Sounds minor league baseball stadium was planned for an urban site on the Cumberland River in Nashville known as Sulpher Dell, which was considered likely to contain evidence of an extensive late prehistoric Native American settlement. The presence of extensive layers of 19th to early 20th century fill limited access to the area, however, and made conventional archaeological investigations impossible.
Capital Project Solutions, Inc. retained TRC to conduct archaeological monitoring during earthmoving at the site in order to ensure that significant archaeological deposits were not impacted while allowing for continued site development.
TRC Services provided:
- TRC staff monitored removal of the historic fill layers, and collected representative examples of 19th to early 20th century materials for possible interpretation at the new ball park.
- Deep beneath what would soon be third base, an intact prehistoric land surface was encountered, in the form of a dark midden containing charcoal, ash, mussel shell, and burned earth in association with numerous large, thick ceramic sherds.
- The materials proved to be the remains of a late prehistoric salt extraction area, in which naturally occurring brine was processed to produce salt for local use and possible trade.
- Since the surviving site was at or just below the maximum depth needed to construct the ball field, TRC conducted limited documentation prior to the reburial of the surface under sterile fill.
The archaeological monitoring and excavations allowed work on this urban redevelopment project to proceed on schedule, while also providing important information on a little-known aspect of Nashville area prehistory.
Capital Project Solutions, Inc.
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