A branch in the tree of human development: subsistence methods at Ohio Archaic and Fort Ancient cultural period sites.


Harrison Stanley
Kenneth Tankersley


By Harrison Stanley, Archaeology

Advisor: Kenneth Tankersley

Abstract: Subsistence related artifacts from a late Archaic and a middle Fort Ancient cultural period site, excavated by the University of Cincinnati during the 1970s were examined to determine if hunting and gathering practices changed over a period of ~4,000 years (between 2750BCE and 1200CE). During this time, Indigenous populations living in southeastern Ohio developed a maize-based agricultural economy. Despite this economic shift through time, a statistical analysis (t-test) of flaked-stone, vertebrate and invertebrate remains, and botanical remains, show that human livelihood remained dependent on hunting wild game and gathering wild plants for food. The data shows no significant difference (p < .05) between proxies of late Archaic and middle Fort Ancient subsistence. With this information, we can continue working towards developing a better understanding of the contributing components of subsistence change in indigenous populations. Further, with this statistical insight we can quantitatively reevaluate previous investigations to determine their potential future relevance.


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