Sponsored by: Sam Houston Museum
The Sam Houston Museum welcomes archeologist Jeff Girard, retired faculty at Northwestern State University and regional archaeologist for the Louisiana Division of Archaeology for more than 25 years. Early in June 2017, a remarkable prehistoric dugout canoe was discovered on the banks of the Red River north of Shreveport, Louisiana. At 10.2 m (about 34 feet) in length, it is the largest yet discovered in Louisiana, and one of the largest in the Southeastern United States. A radiocarbon date indicates that the canoe was constructed in the 14th century, contemporary with an extensive Caddo settlement on the east side of the river. This presentation summarizes the challenges that confronted researchers and local volunteers for extracting the canoe from the riverbank and transporting it to Texas A&M university for conservation; and provides information about nearby Caddo village and ceremonial sites whose past inhabitants might have made and used the boat. Also to be discussed is the nature and importance of visitation, gift giving, and trade among Caddo societies of the 14th century. Exhibits and refreshments 6:30 pm with hour-long presentation and questions starting at 7:00 pm.