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Redlands, CA, United States

Eerkens J.W.,University of California at Davis | Rosenthal J.S.,Far Western Anthropological Research Group | Stevens N.E.,University of California at Davis | Cannon A.,Statistical Research Inc. | And 2 more authors.
Journal of Island and Coastal Archaeology | Year: 2010

Production of marine shell beads in island and coastal settings was an important activity in prehistory, with important political and economic ties. Currently, there are few methods to track beads to their locus of production. Examining the spatial distribution of bead types provides one method of doing so. Chemical and stable isotopic methods provide an additional and independent means of testing hypotheses generated by spatial distributions. We use stable oxygen, carbon, and strontium isotope data to reconstruct provenance zones for 18 Olivella biplicata beads from the Los Angeles Basin and San Nicolas Island, California. We compare the results to isotopic data from modern and radiocarbon-dated whole shells collected along the Pacific Coast. Results indicate that all 18 beads were manufactured from shells growing in open coast locations south of Point Conception. Differences in isotopic composition between bead types suggest that not all were produced in the same location. Some, such as callus beads (K1), have highly variable composition, suggesting production in a range of locations. Others, such as thin lipped (E1), seem to have been produced in more restricted regions. © 2010 Taylor & Francis Group, LLC.

Sherwood S.C.,Sewanee: The University of the South | Windingstad J.D.,Statistical Research Inc. | Barker A.W.,University of Missouri | O'Shea J.M.,University of Michigan | Sherwood W.C.,James Madison University
Geoarchaeology | Year: 2013

While extensive Pleistocene loess deposits have been identified across Eurasia, Holocene age loess (typically nonglaciogenic) is rarely recognized. We explore possible loess deposits in the Mureş River Valley of western Romania, providing a regional signal of increased aridity during the mid-late Holocene. This proposed aridity may be responsible for the abandonment of Middle Bronze Age tell settlements along the major drainages of the eastern Carpathian Basin (Pannonian plain). This hypothesis centers on a proposed aeolian deposit (the "Pecica deposit"), a ca. 50-80 cm thick, relatively homogeneous, gray layer blanketing the top of the Bronze Age tell of Pecica-Şanţul Mare. Comparing the morphological, geochemical, and physical characteristics of this specific tell deposit with two representative profiles near the site containing glaciogenic calcareous loess and potential Holocene loess deposits developed in Chernozems, we find significant similarities to support this hypothesis. We then review various forms of proxy data published from elsewhere in Central and Eastern Europe suggesting a warming trend during this period. The temporal placement of the Pecica deposit is bracketed using diagnostic artifacts, radiocarbon dates, and the degree of soil development, suggesting a period of increased aridity likely occurring soon after the 17th century B.C. © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

Reddy S.N.,Statistical Research Inc. | Erlandson J.M.,University of Oregon
Journal of Archaeological Science | Year: 2012

Carbonized macrobotanical remains from a trans-Holocene archaeological and paleontological sequence at Daisy Cave provide important insights into the use of food plants by Paleocoastal people as well as later groups on California's Northern Channel Islands. Small seeds are rare among the macrobotanical remains recovered in the cultural strata at Daisy Cave, which are dominated by charcoal from woody plants used as fuel. The recovery of Brodiaea-type corms from the Early and Late Holocene strata suggests, however, that geophytes were an important source of carbohydrates and calories for Channel Islanders throughout the Holocene. The proposed importance of geophytes is consistent with the abundance of Brodiaea in island vegetation communities recovering from more than a century of overgrazing, as well as the large numbers of digging stick weights found in island sites. © 2011 Elsevier Ltd.

Garraty C.P.,Statistical Research Inc.
Journal of Anthropological Archaeology | Year: 2011

The site of Finch Camp in the middle Queen Creek area of Arizona, southeast of Phoenix, has produced some of the earliest evidence of utilitarian pottery use in the US Southwest. Using multiple lines of evidence from vessel morphology, surface alteration, and minute fatty acid residues in vessel walls, I evaluate the nascent function of the earliest vessels (mostly neckless jars, or tecomates) and infer a diachronic process of functional expansion from about 350 B.C.-A.D. 400. This evidence provides robust evidence for evaluating various theoretical models of pottery origins. I argue that utilitarian pottery was initially adopted in connection with the intensification of small particulate plant foods (e.g., seeds, grains) and increasing household-level control over resources. Further, vessel functions may have expanded during the early centuries A.D. in response to women's task-scheduling conflicts stemming from increasing residential stability and growing reliance on low-level horticulture. © 2011 Elsevier Inc.

Huckleberry G.,University of Arizona | Onken J.,University of Arizona | Graves W.M.,Statistical Research Inc. | Wegener R.,Statistical Research Inc.
Geomorphology | Year: 2013

Recent archaeological excavations along the lower Salt River, Arizona resulted in the unexpected discovery of buried late Pleistocene soils and cultural features dating 5800-7100cal YBP (Early Archaic), the latter representing the earliest evidence of human activity in the lower Salt River floodplain thus far identified. Because the lower Salt River floodplain has been heavily impacted by recent agriculture and urbanization and contains few stratigraphic exposures, our understanding of the river's geological history is limited. Here we present a late Quaternary alluvial chronology for a segment of the lower Salt River based on 19 accelerator mass spectrometry 14C and four optically stimulated luminescence ages obtained during two previous geoarchaeological investigations. Deposits are organized into allostratigraphic units and reveal a buried late Pleistocene terrace inset into middle-to-late Pleistocene terrace deposits. Holocene terrace fill deposits unconformably cap the late Pleistocene terrace tread in the site area, and the lower portion of this fill contains the Early Archaic archaeological features. Channel entrenchment and widening ~900cal YBP eroded much of the older terrace deposits, leaving only a remnant of fill containing the buried latest Pleistocene and middle-to-late Holocene deposits preserved in the site area. Subsequent overbank deposition and channel filling associated with a braided channel system resulted in the burial of the site by a thin layer of flood sediments. Our study confirms that the lower Salt River is a complex mosaic of late Quaternary alluvium formed through vertical and lateral accretion, with isolated patches of buried soils preserved through channel avulsion. Although channel avulsion is linked to changes in sediment load and discharge and may have climatic linkages, intrinsic geomorphic and local base level controls limit direct correlations of lower Salt River stratigraphy to other large rivers in the North American Southwest. © 2012 Elsevier B.V.

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