Update W: Looking Sharp at Souza Mound Preserve

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Cory Wilkins, Western Regional Director, working hard at removing the graffiti
Working hard at removing the graffiti

The Archaeological Conservancy’s Western office recently tended to an important maintenance issue at the Souza Mound Preserve.  This preserve is located in a neighborhood of Sacramento and amazingly still contains the remains of a 2,000 year old large village site quietly underneath the surface.

Since the Souza Mound Preserve is in a residential neighborhood, it is very important to keep the property looking presentable and clean.  A maintenance company mows the lawn every so often when the grass gets too long.  And last July, TAC staff spent the day at the preserve cleaning up fallen tree limbs and cutting back unwanted vegetation.

The graffiti prior to attempted removal.
The graffiti prior to attempted removal.

Recently, TAC’s Western staff heard from the Steward that the preserve’s retaining wall, adjacent to the sidewalk, had fresh graffiti on it.  The preserve’s steward is a neighbor living near the mound.  The steward keeps an eye on the property, informs TAC when the hired maintenance company mows the mound, and reports any unusual or unwanted activity.  It is important that all our sites not only remain protected, but also in good respectable condition. We couldn’t do it without our fantastic Site Stewards.

TAC’s Western personnel went to the preserve last week to try to remove the graffiti.  While a pressure washer would have been more effective at removing it, there is no convenient water or electric hook up close to the preserve.  Instead, they attempted to remove the graffiti with paint remover, a hard bristle brush, and a water pump sprayer.  Unfortunately, this method was not effective in completely removing the graffiti.  After consulting with the steward, he indicated that the closest neighbor to the preserve has offered the use of his water hookup.  TAC staff will be returning to the mound in the next week or so to complete the graffiti removal with a high pressure washer.   Soon we will be looking sharp again!

Cory Wilkins, Western Regional Director, working hard at removing the graffiti
Cory Wilkins, Western Regional Director, working hard at removing the graffiti

Souza Mound

The results: faded but still present.
The results: faded but still present.

–Deanna Commons, Western Regional Field Representative

Learn about other protect California Village sites: Prehistoric Site of Lorenzen,  Workplace at Mojave and Portuguese Bench

Read about more Amazing TAC Volunteers: Our East St. Louis Clean-up Team, The Right Team: Our Eyes and Ears in the Ground and How We Save Sites with Elbow Grease and Teamwork

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