The Adena culture was a Pre-Columbian Native American culture that existed from 1000 to 200 BC, in a time known as the Early Woodland period. The Adena culture refers to what were a number of related Native American societies sharing a burial complex and ceremonial system; the Adena lived in an area including parts of present-day Ohio, Wisconsin, West Virginia, New York and Maryland. The Adena Culture was named for the large mound on Thomas Worthington's early 19th-century estate located near Chillicothe, which he named "Adena", Adena sites are concentrated in a small area - maybe 200 sites in the central Ohio Valley, with another 200 scattered throughout Wisconsin, Kentucky, West Virginia and Maryland, although those in Ohio may once have numbered in the thousands; the importance of the Adena complex comes from its considerable influence on other contemporary and succeeding cultures. The Adena culture is seen as the precursor to the traditions of the Hopewell culture, which are sometimes thought as an elaboration, or zenith, of Adena traditions.
The Adena were notable for their agricultural practices, artistic works, extensive trading network, which supplied them with a variety of raw materials, ranging from copper from the Great Lakes to shells from the Gulf Coast. Lasting traces of Adena culture are still seen in the remains of their substantial earthworks. At one point, larger Adena mounds numbered in the hundreds, but only a small number of the remains of the larger Adena earthen monuments still survive today; these mounds ranged in size from 20 feet to 300 feet in diameter and served as burial structures, ceremonial sites, historical markers, gathering places. These earthen monuments were built using hundreds of thousands of baskets full of specially selected and graded earth. According to archaeological investigations, Adena earthworks were built as part of their burial rituals, in which the earth of the earthwork was piled atop a burned mortuary building; these mortuary buildings were intended to keep and maintain the dead until their final burial was performed.
Before the construction of the earthworks, some utilitarian and grave goods would be placed on the floor of the structure, burned with the goods and honored dead within. The earthwork would be constructed, a new mortuary structure would be placed atop the new earthwork. After a series of repetitions, mortuary/earthwork/mortuary/earthwork, a quite prominent earthwork would remain. In the Adena period, circular ridges of unknown function were sometimes constructed around the burial earthworks. Although the mounds are beautiful artistic achievements themselves, Adena artists created smaller, more personal pieces of art. Art motifs that became important to many Native Americans began with the Adena. Motifs such as the weeping eye and cross and circle design became mainstays in many succeeding cultures. Many pieces of art seemed to revolve around shamanic practices, the transformation of humans into animals—particularly birds, wolves and deer—and back to human form; this may indicate a belief that the practice imparted the animals' qualities to the wearer or holder of the objects.
Deer antlers, both real and constructed of copper, wolf and mountain lion jawbones, many other objects were fashioned into costumes and other forms of regalia by the Adena. Distinctive tubular smoking pipes, with either flattened or blocked-end mouthpieces, suggest the offering of smoke to the spirits; the objective of pipe smoking may have been altered states of consciousness, achieved through the use of the hallucinogenic plant Nicotiana rustica. All told, Adena was a manifestation of a broad regional increase in the number and kind of artifacts devoted to spiritual needs; the Adena carved small stone tablets 4 or 5 inches by 3 or 4 inches by.5 inches thick. On one or both flat sides were gracefully composed stylized zoomorphs or curvilinear geometric designs in deep relief. Paint has been found on some Adena tablets, leading archaeologists to propose that these stone tablets were used to stamp designs on cloth or animal hides, or onto their own bodies, it is possible. Unlike in other cultures, Adena pottery was not buried with the dead or the remains of the cremated, as were other artifacts.
Adena pottery was tempered with grit or crushed limestone and was thick. The vessel shapes were flat-bottomed jars, sometimes with small foot-like supports; the large and elaborate mound sites served a nearby scattering of people. The population was dispersed in small settlements of one to two structures. A typical house was built in a circle form from 15 to 45 feet in diameter; the walls were made of paired posts tilted outward, that were joined to other pieces of wood to form a cone shaped roof. The roof was covered with bark and the walls may have been bark and/or wickerwork, their sustenance was acquired through the cultivation of native plants. Hunted deer, black bear, beaver, turkey, trumpeter swan, ruffed grouse. Gathered several edible seed and nuts. Cultivated pumpkin, squash and goosefoot; the Adena ground stone axes. Somewhat rougher slab-like stones with chipped edges were used as hoes. Bone and antler were used in small tools, but more prominently in ornamental objects such as beads and worked animal-jaw gorgets or paraphernalia.
Spoons and other implements were made fro
Glacial Kame Culture
The Glacial Kame Culture was a culture of Archaic people in North America that occupied southern Ontario, Michigan and Indiana from around 8000 BC to 1000 BC. The name of this culture derives from its members' practice of burying their dead atop glacier-deposited gravel hills. Among the most common types of artifacts found at Glacial Kame sites are shells of marine animals and goods manufactured from a copper ore, knows as float copper; the type site for Glacial Kame is the Ridgeway Site near the village of Ridgeway in Hardin County, Ohio. The site was discovered in 1856 by workers building a railroad line nearby, who mined the kame for ballast. Archaeologists specializing in Ohio became familiar with Glacial Kame sooner than with the state's other cultures. Other regional cultures include the Maple Creek Culture of southwestern Ohio, Red Ocher Culture and Old Copper Culture of Wisconsin. For a time, it was thought that the Glacial Kame Culture did not produce ceramics, but this understanding was disproven by the discovery of basic pottery at the Zimmerman Site near Roundhead, Ohio.
Excavation of Glacial Kame sites yields few projectile points — some of the most important sites have yielded no projectile points at all — and their few points that have been found are of diverse styles. For this reason, it appears that different groups of Glacial Kame peoples independently developed different methods of manufacturing their projectile points; this diversity appears in the culture's heartland in Champaign and Logan counties in western Ohio. Keller, Christine K. Glacial Kame sandal-sole shell gorgets: an exploration of manufacture, use and public exhibition. 2008. Indian Culture History of Ohio
The Clovis culture is a prehistoric Paleo-Indian culture, named for distinct stone tools found in close association with Pleistocene fauna at Blackwater Locality No. 1 near Clovis, New Mexico, in the 1920s and 1930s. It appears around 11,500–11,000 uncalibrated radiocarbon years before present at the end of the last glacial period, is characterized by the manufacture of "Clovis points" and distinctive bone and ivory tools. Archaeologists' most precise determinations at present suggest this radiocarbon age is equal to 13,200 to 12,900 calendar years ago. Clovis people are considered to be the ancestors of most of the indigenous cultures of the Americas; the only human burial, directly associated with tools from the Clovis culture included the remains of an infant boy researchers named Anzick-1. Paleogenetic analyses of Anzick-1's ancient nuclear, Y-chromosome DNA reveal that Anzick-1 is related to modern Native American populations, which lends support to the Beringia hypothesis for the settlement of the Americas.
The Clovis culture was replaced by several more localized regional societies from the Younger Dryas cold-climate period onward. Post-Clovis cultures include the Folsom tradition, Suwannee-Simpson, Plainview-Goshen and Redstone; each of these is thought to derive directly from Clovis, in some cases differing only in the length of the fluting on their projectile points. Although this is held to be the result of normal cultural change through time, numerous other reasons have been suggested as driving forces to explain changes in the archaeological record, such as the Younger Dryas postglacial climate change which exhibited numerous faunal extinctions. After the discovery of several Clovis sites in eastern North America in the 1930s, the Clovis people came to be regarded as the first human inhabitants who created a widespread culture in the New World. However, this theory has been challenged, in the opinion of many archaeologists, by several archaeological discoveries, including sites such as Cactus Hill in Virginia, Paisley Caves in the Summer Lake Basin of Oregon, the Topper site in Allendale County, South Carolina, Meadowcroft Rockshelter in Pennsylvania, the Friedkin site in Texas, Cueva Fell in Chile, Monte Verde in Chile.
The oldest claimed human archaeological site in the Americas is the Pedra Furada hearths, a site in Brazil that precedes the Clovis culture and the other sites mentioned by 19,000 to 30,000 years. This claim has become an issue of contention between North American archaeologists and their South American and European counterparts, who disagree on whether it is conclusively proven to be an older human site. A hallmark of the toolkit associated with the Clovis culture is the distinctively shaped, fluted-stone spear point, known as the Clovis point; the Clovis point is bifacial and fluted on both sides. Archaeologists do not agree on whether the widespread presence of these artifacts indicates the proliferation of a single people, or the adoption of a superior technology by diverse population groups; the culture is named after artifacts found between 1936 at Blackwater Locality No. 1, an archaeological site between the towns of Clovis and Portales, New Mexico. These finds were deemed important due to their direct association with mammoth species and the extinct Bison antiquus.
The in situ finds of 1936 and 1937 included most of four stone Clovis points, two long bone points with impact damage, stone blades, a portion of a Clovis blade core, several cutting tools made on stone flakes. Clovis sites have since been identified throughout much of the contiguous United States, as well as Mexico and Central America, into northern South America. Clovis people are accepted to have hunted mammoths, as well as extinct bison, gomphotheres, tapir, camelops and other smaller animals. More than 125 species of plants and animals are known to have been used by Clovis people in the portion of the Western Hemisphere they inhabited; the oldest Clovis site in North America is believed to be El Fin del Mundo in northwestern Sonora, discovered during a 2007 survey. It features occupation dating around 13,390 calibrated years BP. In 2011, remains of gomphotheres were found; the Aubrey site in Denton County, produced an identical radiocarbon date. The most held perspective on the end of the Clovis culture is that a decline in the availability of megafauna, combined with an overall increase in a less mobile population, led to local differentiation of lithic and cultural traditions across the Americas.
After this time, Clovis-style fluted points were replaced by other fluted-point traditions with an uninterrupted sequence across North and Central America. An continuous cultural adaptation proceeds from the Clovis period through the ensuing Middle and Late Paleoindian periods. Whether the Clovis culture drove the mammoth, other species, to extinction via overhunting – the so-called Pleistocene overkill hypothesis – is still an open, controversial, question, it has been hypothesized that the Clovis culture had its decline in the wake of the Younger Dryas cold phase. This'cold shock', lasting 1500 years, affected many parts of the world, including North America; this appears to have been triggered by a vast amount of meltwater – from Lake Agassiz – emptying into the North Atlantic, disrupting the thermohaline circulation. The Younger Dryas impact hypothesis, or Clovis comet hypothesis proposed that a large air burst or earth impact of a comet or comets from outer space initiated the Younger Drya
La Brea Tar Pits
The La Brea Tar Pits are a group of tar pits around which Hancock Park was formed in urban Los Angeles. Natural asphalt has seeped up from the ground in this area for tens of thousands of years; the tar is covered with dust, leaves, or water. Over many centuries, the tar preserved the bones of trapped animals; the George C. Page Museum is dedicated to researching the tar pits and displaying specimens from the animals that died there; the La Brea Tar Pits are a registered National Natural Landmark. Tar pits are composed of heavy oil fractions called gilsonite. In Hancock Park, crude oil seeps up along the 6th Street Fault from the Salt Lake Oil Field, which underlies much of the Fairfax District north of the park; the oil reaches the surface and forms pools at several locations in the park, becoming asphalt as the lighter fractions of the petroleum biodegrade or evaporate. The tar pits visible today are from human excavation; the lake pit was an asphalt mine. The other pits visible today were produced between 1913 and 1915, when over 100 pits were excavated in search of large mammal bones.
Various combinations of asphaltum, dust and water have since filled in these holes. The asphalt appears in vents, hardening as it oozes out, to form stubby mounds; these can be seen in several areas of the park. This seepage has been happening for tens of thousands of years. From time to time, the asphalt would form a deposit thick enough to trap animals, the surface would be covered with layers of water, dust, or leaves. Animals would wander in, become trapped, die. Predators would enter to eat the trapped animals and become stuck; as the bones of dead animals sink into the asphalt, it soaks into them, turning them a dark-brown or black color. Lighter fractions of petroleum evaporate from the asphalt, leaving a more solid substance, which encases the bones. Dramatic fossils of large mammals have been extricated from the tar, but the asphalt preserves microfossils: wood and plant remnants, rodent bones, mollusks, seeds and pollen grains. Examples of some of these are on display in the George C. Page museum.
Radiometric dating of preserved wood and bones has given an age of 38,000 years for the oldest known material from the La Brea seeps. The pits still ensnare organisms today, so most of the pits are fenced to protect humans and animals; the Native American Chumash and Tongva people living in the area built boats unlike any others in North America prior to contact by settlers. Pulling fallen Northern California redwood trunks and pieces of driftwood from the Santa Barbara Channel, their ancestors learned to seal the cracks between the boards of the large wooden plank canoes by using the natural resource of tar; this innovative form of transportation allowed access up and down the coastline and to the Channel Islands. The Portolá expedition, a group of Spanish explorers led by Gaspar de Portolá, made the first written record of the tar pits in 1769. Father Juan Crespí wrote, While crossing the basin the scouts reported having seen some geysers of tar issuing from the ground like springs; the scouts reported that they had come across many of these springs and had seen large swamps of them, they said, to caulk many vessels.
We were not so lucky ourselves. We christened them Los Volcanes de Brea. Harrison Rogers, who accompanied Jedediah Smith on his 1826 expedition to California, was shown a piece of the solidified asphalt while at Mission San Gabriel, noted in his journal that "The Citizens of the Country make great use of it to pitch the roofs of their houses"; the La Brea Tar Pits and Hancock Park are situated within what was once the Mexican land grant of Rancho La Brea, now part of urban Los Angeles in the Miracle Mile district. For some years, tar-covered bones were found on the Rancho La Brea property but were not recognized as fossils because the ranch had lost various animals–including horses, cattle and camels–whose bones resemble several of the fossil species; the original Rancho La Brea land grant stipulated that the tar pits be open to the public for the use of the local Pueblo. They mistook the bones in the pits for the remains of pronghorn antelope or cattle that had become mired. Union Oil geologist W. W. Orcutt is credited, in 1901, with first recognizing that fossilized prehistoric animal bones were preserved in pools of asphalt on the Hancock Ranch.
In commemoration of Orcutt's initial discovery, paleontologists named the La Brea coyote in his honor. Contemporary excavations of the bones started in 1913–1915. In the 1940s and 1950s, public excitement was generated by the preparation of recovered large mammal bones. Subsequent study demonstrated the fossil vertebrate material was well preserved, with little evidence of bacterial degradation of bone protein, they were believed to be from the last glacial period, believed to be about 30,000 years ago. After radiocarbon dating redated the last glacial period as still occurring 11 to 12,000 years ago, the fossils were redated to be 10–20,000 years old. Methane gas escapes from the tar pits. Asphalt and methane appear under surrounding buildings and require special operations for removal to prevent the weakening of building foundations. In 2007, researchers from UC Riverside discovered that the bubbles were caused by h
Calf Creek culture
Calf Creek Culture was a nomadic hunter-gatherer people who lived in the southcentral region of North America in the area of what is today Oklahoma and surrounding states, artifacts having been found in such places as Beard's Bluff and Sand Springs, Oklahoma. The Calf Creek culture was active during the early to middle Archaic period in the Americas 7,500 to 4,000 years ago; the Calf Creek people were noted for their use of heat-treated flint spearheads. The Calf Creek point was first named and described in an Arkansas amateur archaeological journal by Don Dickson in 1968, for examples found at Calf Creek cave in Searcy County Arkansas; the cave was named for a perennial stream that runs nearby. In 2003, a 5,120±25-year-old bison skull was found on the banks of the Arkansas River by Kim Holt; this find was featured on History Detectives. The skull had a Calf Creek culture spearhead embedded just over the orbital of the right eye socket; the size of the spearhead, the wound it inflicted further suggest that the Calf Creek used atlatls
Archaic period (North America)
In the classification of the archaeological cultures of North America, the Archaic period or "Meso-Indian period" in North America, taken to last from around 8000 to 1000 BC in the sequence of North American pre-Columbian cultural stages, is a period defined by the archaic stage of cultural development. The Archaic stage is characterized by subsistence economies supported through the exploitation of nuts and shellfish; as its ending is defined by the adoption of sedentary farming, this date can vary across the Americas. The rest of the Americas have an Archaic Period; this classification system was first proposed by Gordon Willey and Philip Phillips in the accepted 1958 book Method and Theory in American Archaeology. In the organization of the system, the Archaic period followed the Lithic stage and is superseded by the Formative stage; the Lithic stage The Archaic stage The Formative stage The Classic stage The Post-Classic stageNumerous local variations have been identified within the cultural rankings.
The period has been subdivided by region and time. For instance, the Archaic Southwest tradition is subdivided into the Dieguito-Pinto, Oshara and Chihuahua cultures. Since the 1990s, secure dating of multiple Middle Archaic sites in northern Louisiana and Florida has challenged traditional models of development. In these areas, hunter-gatherer societies in the Lower Mississippi Valley organized to build monumental earthwork mound complexes as early as 3500 BC, with building continuing over a period of 500 years; such early mound sites as Frenchman's Bend and Hedgepeth were of this time period. Watson Brake is now considered to be the oldest mound complex in the Americas, it precedes. More than 100 sites have been identified as associated with the regional Poverty Point culture of the Late Archaic period, it was part of a regional trading network across the Southeast. Across what is now the Southeastern United States, starting around 4000 BC, people exploited wetland resources, creating large shell middens.
Middens developed where the people lived along rivers, but there is limited evidence of Archaic peoples along the coastlines prior to 3000 BC. Archaic sites on the coast may have been inundated by rising sea levels. Starting around 3000 BC, evidence of large-scale exploitation of oysters appears. During the period 3000 BC to 1000 BC, shell rings, large shell middens that more or less surround open centers, were developed along the coast of the Southeastern United States; these shell rings are numerous in South Carolina and Georgia, but are found scattered around the Florida Peninsula and along the Gulf of Mexico coast as far west as the Pearl River. In some places, such as Horr's Island in Southwest Florida, resources were rich enough to support sizable mound-building communities year-round. Four shell or sand mounds on Horr's Island have been dated to between 4,870 and 4,270 Before Present. Early Archaic8000 BC: The last glacial ends, causing sea levels to rise and flood the Beringia land bridge, closing the primary migration route from Siberia.
8000 BC: Sufficient rain falls on the American Southwest to support many large mammal species--mammoth, a bison species-—that soon go extinct. 8000 BC: Hunters in the American Southwest use the atlatl. 7500 BC: Early basketry. 7560—7370 BC: Kennewick Man dies along the shore of the Columbia River in Washington State, leaving one of the most complete early Native American skeletons. 7000 BC: Northeastern peoples depend on deer and wild grains as the climate warms. 7000 BC: Native Americans in Lahontan Basin, Nevada mummify their dead to give them honor and respect, evidencing deep concern about their treatment and condition. Middle Archaic6500 BC–200 AD: The San Dieguito-Pinto tradition and Chihuahua Tradition flourish in southern California, the Southwest, northwestern Mexico. 6000 BC: Ancestors of Penutian-speaking peoples settle in the Northwestern Plateau. 6000 BC: Nomadic hunting bands roam Subarctic Alaska following herds of caribou and other game animals. 6000 BC: Aleuts begin to arrive in the Aleutian Islands.
5700 BC: Cataclysmic eruption of Mount Mazama in Oregon. 5500 BC–500 AD Oshara Tradition, a Southwestern Archaic Tradition, arises in north-central New Mexico, the San Juan Basin, the Rio Grande Valley, southern Colorado, southeastern Utah. Natives of the Northwestern Plateau begin to rely on salmon runs. 5000 BC: Early cultivation of food crops began in Mesoamerica. 5000 BC: Native Americans in the Pacific Northwest from Alaska to California develop a fishing economy, with salmon as a staple. 5000 BC: The Old Copper Culture of the Great Lakes area hammers the metal into various tools and ornaments, such as knives, awls, bracelets and pendants. 5000 BC–200 AD: The Cochise Tradition arises in the American Southwest. Native Americans in the northern Great Lakes produce copper tools and utensils traded throughout the Great Plains and Ohio Valley. Shell ornaments and copper items at Indian Knoll in Kentucky evidence an extensive trade system over several millennia. 4000 BC: Inhabitants of Mesoamerica cultivate maize while Peruvian natives cultivate beans and squash.
4000–1000 BC: Old Copper Complex emerges in the Great Lakes region 3500 BC: The largest, oldest drive site at Head-Smashed-In Buffalo Jump, Canada. 3500–3000 BC: Construction of extensive mound complex built at Watson Brake in the floodplain of the Ouachita River near Monroe in northern Louisiana. Shell ornaments and copper items at Indian Knoll, Kentucky evi
Fort Walton culture
The Fort Walton culture is the term used by archaeologists for a late prehistoric Native American archaeological culture that flourished in southeastern North America from 1200~1500 CE and is associated with the historic Apalachee people. The Fort Walton culture was named by archaeologist Gordon Willey for the Fort Walton Mound site near Fort Walton Beach, based on his work at the site. Through more work in the area archaeologist have now come to believe the Ft. Walton site was built and used by people of the contemporaneous Pensacola culture; the peoples of the Ft. Walton culture used sand, grog, or combinations of these materials as tempering agents in their pottery, whereas the Pensacola culture peoples used the more typical Mississippian culture shell tempering for their pottery. Using this unique combination of sand/grit/grog tempering as its criterion Fort Walton culture is now defined within the geographical area stretching from the Aucilla River in the east to a Pensacola–Fort Walton transitional area around Choctawhatchee Bay in the west and north into the interior of south Alabama and Georgia, 107 miles up the Apalachicola River and 50 miles up the Chattahoochee River.
1000 to 1200 CE local Weeden Island peoples began adapting and adopting intensive maize agriculture, the building of platform mounds for ceremonial and religious purposes and making a new variety of ceramics, changes influenced by contact with the major Mississippian culture centers to the north and west. Early archaeologists thought that the Fort Walton culture represented the intrusion of peoples from Mexico or Mississippian cultures from the northwest replacing the indigenous Weeden Island peoples, but by the late 1970s this theory was discounted. Layouts and locations for Fort Walton sites are similar to other Mississippian culture sites, with the exception of sites in the Tallahassee Hills area which because of the local geography are located around lakes and swamps instead of rivers. Settlement types include single family homesteads, multi family hamlets, small single mound centers, large multimound centers; the hierarchical settlement patterns suggests. By the Late Fort Walton period increased contact with Lamar Phase peoples from central Georgia saw another change in styles of decoration and manufacture of ceramics.
This new phase is known as the Leon-Jefferson culture. This period sees the collapse of the chiefdoms as aboriginal populations declined following contact with European explorers and colonizers, such as the Hernando de Soto Expedition in 1539; the Fort Walton and Leon-Jefferson peoples are the direct ancestors of the Apalachee peoples. The Lake Jackson Mounds site in Leon County is the largest known ceremonial center of the Fort Walton culture, although there are eight other known ceremonial sites in the Apalachee Province, it was occupied during the entire Fort Walton period, but abandoned at about 1500 CE when the capital of the chiefdom was moved to nearby Anhaica, the capital when the de Soto entrada encamped there in the winter of 1539. Another large site located nearby is the Velda Mound, occupied from 1450 to 1625. Other sites include the Yon Mound and Village Site in Liberty County, the Thick Greenbriar Site in Jackson County. Woodville Karst Plain Project Gabrielle Shahramfar. Determining Fort Walton burial patterns and their relationship within the greater Mississippian world.
University of South Florida