Date of Award

6-1978

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts

Major

Anthropology

Major Professor

Charles H. Faulkner

Committee Members

Jeff Chapman, Walter E. Klippel

Abstract

A cultural history of the middle Nolichucky River Basin has been defined based on data obtained during a 1977 survey of 41 prehistoric archaeological sites. The area was sparsely occupied during the Paleo-Indian period, at least 10,000 years ago. More intensive occupations followed during the Early Archaic through Mississippian periods. Representative areas within four generalized biogeographic zones were examined with particular emphasis on locating prehistoric archaeological sites and lithic raw material sources. The small size of the cultural material sample and limited number of sites examined do not provide sufficient data to make specific conclusions about patterns of settlement and subsistence for individual cultural periods. However, patterns of physiographic distribution of sites and changes in preference of lithic materials were evident for each of the broad cultural periods. Distribution of sites within the biogeographic zones reflects the type of subsistence pattern practiced during each cultural period. Local materials were used almost exclusively in the production of lithic implements. Marked changes in lithic preference are directly related to the relative sizes of naturally occurring raw materials and the implements made from them.

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Anthropology Commons

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