While our physical offices are closed until at least April 13 due Austin's COVID-19 "shelter-in-place" order, the Handbook of Texas will remain available at no-cost for you, your fellow history enthusiasts, and all Texas students currently mandated to study from home. If you have the capacity to help us maintain our online Texas history resources during these uncertain times, please consider making a 100% tax-deductible contribution today. Thank you for your support of TSHA and Texas history. Donate Today »


Edward B. Jelks

BLUM ROCKSHELTER. Blum Rockshelter, an archeological site near Blum in Hill County, was discovered by George Benson in 1951. Because it was to be covered by the flood-control pool of Lake Whitney, it was excavated in 1952 by Edward B. Jelks as part of a salvage program to save archeological evidence in danger of being destroyed. The rockshelter was formed as Nolan's River cut into a soft limestone bank. Eventually the course of the river shifted slightly to the east, leaving a shelter on the west bank. During floods the river deposited sediments on the floor of the shelter, thus producing a stratigraphic separation of the artifacts left there. Several chipped stone knives, scrapers, drills, and arrow points were found, as well as some bone tools and a few Caddoan-style pottery fragments. Excavation of these artifacts provided the first evidence of a clear temporal separation between two divisions of the Central Texas Aspect. Scallorn-type arrow points, which are a defining feature of the Austin Focus, were found mainly in the lower levels of the excavation. Perdiz-type points, diagnostic of the Toyah Focus, were found only in the upper levels. This suggested that the Toyah Focus was the later of the two divisions and possibly developed out of the Austin Focus. The chronology was corroborated by a substantially larger sample of artifacts subsequently found at the Kyle Rockshelter. The artifacts and field notes from Blum are stored at the Texas Archeological Research Laboratory, J. J. Pickle Research Center, University of Texas at Austin.


Edward B. Jelks, "Excavations at the Blum Rockshelter," Bulletin of the Texas Archeological Society 24 (1953). Edward B. Jelks, The Kyle Site (Austin: University of Texas Department of Anthropology, 1962). Dee Ann Suhm, "A Review of Central Texas Archeology," Bulletin of the Texas Archeological Society 29 (1958).

Image Use Disclaimer

All copyrighted materials included within the Handbook of Texas Online are in accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107 related to Copyright and “Fair Use” for Non-Profit educational institutions, which permits the Texas State Historical Association (TSHA), to utilize copyrighted materials to further scholarship, education, and inform the public. The TSHA makes every effort to conform to the principles of fair use and to comply with copyright law.

For more information go to: http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/17/107.shtml

If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond fair use, you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.


The following, adapted from the Chicago Manual of Style, 15th edition, is the preferred citation for this article.

Handbook of Texas Online, Edward B. Jelks, "BLUM ROCKSHELTER," accessed April 09, 2020, http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/bbb01.

Uploaded on June 12, 2010. Modified on April 22, 2019. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.
visit the mytsha forums to participate

View these posts and more when you register your free MyTSHA account.

Call for Papers: Texas Center for Working-Class Studies Events, Symposia, and Workshops
Hi all! You may be interested in this call for papers I received from the Texas Center for Working-Class Studies at Collin College...

Katy Jennings' Ride Scholarly Research Request
I'm doing research on Catherine Jennings Lockwood, specifically the incident known as "Katy Jennings' Ride." Her father was Gordon C. Jennings, the oldest man to die at the Alamo...

Texas Constitution of 1836 Co-Author- Elisha Pease? Ask a Historian
The TSHA profile of Elisha Marshall Pease states that he wrote part of the Texas Constitution although he was only a 24 year-old assistant secretary (not elected). I cannot find any other mention of this authorship work by Pease in other credible research about the credited Constution authors...