Date of Award

8-2010

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts

Major

Anthropology

Major Professor

Walter E. Klippel

Committee Members

Gerald F. Schroedl, Kandace Hollenbach

Abstract

Abstract

This study seeks to expand the knowledge of Woodland subsistence practices in the Alabama River valley by presenting an analysis of the faunal assemblage from the Indian Hill site, 1WX15. Additionally, this study presents a comparison of 1WX15 to other sites from the Tombigbee, Alabama, and Coosa river valleys in order to present a broad picture of Woodland subsistence in and near the Eastern Gulf Coastal Plain.

An intra-site comparison revealed the primary vertebrate resources exploited were mammals and turtles. The substantial amount of turtle fragments suggested the site was occupied during warm months, with a fall and winter occupation possible as well. Feature 38, a domestic dog skeleton, was of special interest. Characteristics of this feature indicated both intentional burial and post-mortem modifications consistent with food refuse.

An inter-site comparison demonstrated that three variables were influencing the composition of the faunal assemblages from the Tombigbee, Alabama, and Coosa river valleys. These three variables were seasonality, geography, and time. Seasonality and geography appeared to have greater influence than time.

This study has revealed three areas in which Eastern Gulf Coastal Plain faunal analyses are inadequate. There are few Middle Woodland faunal assemblages; those available have very small sample sizes. There are no faunal analyses available outside of alluvial valleys. Finally, there are very few winter assemblages; assemblages in which winter occupation is indicated are mixed with warm season material. Rectifying these shortcomings with future research will provide a more comprehensive picture of Woodland subsistence and variability thereof.

All Sites.xls (134 kB)
File 1

1WX15.xls (2029 kB)
File 2

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