Mark Leach inside the Chesterfield Valley Shelter. The scale on the left side is 1 meter. Vandals have defaced the walls of the shelter and looters have disturbed the soil deposits.
The Chesterfield Valley Shelter (23SC2254) overlooks the Dampier village site (23SL2296) that was occupied during the Moorehead Phase, approximately AD 1200 to 1275. The shelter allows a clear view for over 10 kilometers in both directions of the Missouri River Valley; the site includes a red ochre pictograph. Assigning the shelter and pictograph to the Mississippian period is based upon the projectile points and pottery sherds eroding from the fill illegally disturb inside the shelter. Mark Leach discovered the pictograph and rock shelter during his systematic survey of the area around Chesterfield, MO. The shelter was recorded with the Missouri Speological Survey during 1976 by John Schwartz and John Oberschelp. The site is situated on private property and is not open to the public. The onsite research during 2020 has been conducted with the property owner who is interested in understanding and protecting the site.
Photographs taken by Mark Leach as I try not to fall off the narrow ledge while documenting the pictograph at the Chesterfield Valley Site. The site is very dangerous to reach because it is situated on a bluff face high above the Missouri River floodplain. The site is on private property and is not open to the public.
Pen and ink drawings done by Professor Gary Gackstatter, St. Louis Community College - Meramec.
Website constructed 12 April 2020
Shell tempered body sherd with a red slip on the exterior. Thickness = 5.2 mm and weight = 7.41 grams. Medium to fine shell temper. 2.5YR4/6 red exterior; 2.5YR5/4 reddish brown core and 2.5 YR3/2 Dusky red interior.
Shell tempered body sherd from the Chesterfield Valley Shelter. Thickness = 4.3 mm and weight = 4.85 grams. Medium to coarse shell temper. 10YR7/2 light gray exterior and core; 10YR6/3 pale brown interior.
Red Ochre pictograph to the right of the 20 cm. scale. Vandals have spray painted many areas of the cliff face at the Chesterfield Valley Shelter. This one, undamaged exposure of Burlington Limestone still retains a faint pictograph that was discovered by Mark Leach. Scale is 20 cm.
Cahokia point with two notches. Length = 17.4 mm, width = 14.6 mm, Thickness = 2.0 mm, and weight = 0.67 grams. A very delicate point possible broken during manufacturing; the morphology of this point is identical to several Cahokia points from the Dampier Site (23SL2296).
Cahokia point with two notches. Length = 21.7 mm, width = 13.8 mm, Thickness = 3.6, and weight = 0.92 grams.
The morphology of this point is identical to several Cahokia points from the Dampier Site (23SL2296).
Cordmarked body sherd with limestone temper from Chesterfield Valley Rockshelter. Thickness = 5.0 mm and weight = 3.76 grams. Fine limestone temper. 10R5/6 red interior and core; 10R5/2 weak red interior.
Chert flake that was repurposed into a very small projectile point; possibly, for a child's toy/practice arrow. Length = 12.5 mm, width = 8.4 mm, thickness = 1.5 mm and weight = 0.14 grams.
Cahokia point base. Length = 16.6 mm, width = 13.7 mm, thickness = 3.3 mm, and weight = 0.9 grams.
DStretch image of the pictograph above the Chesterfield Valley Rock Shelter. Scale is 20 cm.
Rice Side Notched point associated with the Chesterfield Valley Shelter. Length = 61.6 mm, width = 34.7 mm, thickness = 11.5 mm and weight = 25.19 grams.