Presentations and Publications

Welcome to our archive of professional presentations! At professional conferences, archaeologists present research findings in several ways, usually through spoken papers and posters.

2022 Society for American Archaeology 87th Annual Meeting: Chicago Illinois

ARI Contributions

Title: 

Beyond four Walls: Seeking early Fort Ancient households through refitted vessel fragments  

Authors: 

Sara J. Polk (ARI), Benjamin J. Cross (ARI), and Marcus A. Schulenburg (ARI).  

Abstract:  

Households are constructed through people’s relationships within and beyond the residential structure. These relationships are reflected in the archaeological record. In this study, we examine the presence of households within an early Fort Ancient village in southeastern Indiana. The Guard Site (12D29) is home to 30-40 structures and presumably a similar number of households. We are presented with the opportunity to study two adjacent structures and the intervening space through the lens of households. By investigating the spatial distribution of features and associated pottery vessels, we examine household functions and roles beyond four walls. Our results offer insights into small-scale social relations within a larger village structure during a dynamic period of cultural change in the Ohio River Valley.  

Title:  

Unearthing Menstruation: Locating and assessing potential menstrual structures in a Fort Ancient context  
 

Authors: 

Bailey Raab (ARI), Adrienne Frie (University of Wisconsin – Oshkosh), Marcus Schulenburg (ARI) 

Abstract:  

The experience of menstruation is shared by many women at some point in their lives. Despite this near universality the topic has not been extensively investigated outside offhand identification of purported menstrual huts. This trend is especially apparent in the Ohio Valley where the tradition is upheld by a single structure with small posts. By examining accounts of menstrual structures and their presence in the archaeological record across the world, we can develop a plan to identify these structures locally using a combination of ethnography, historical accounts, and archaeology.  Finally, we apply our methods to an early Fort Ancient village site, Guard (12D29), in southeastern Indiana. Guard was selected due to its size, the presence of permanent architectural structures, and its extensive excavation history. This method of detecting menstrual structures within sites could be used at precontact sites in the Midwest to further our overall understanding of menstruation and women within archaeology. 

Title:  

Developing a Multivocal, Sustainable Land Stewardship Plan for Archaeological Sites: A case study from the Archaeological Research Institute, Lawrenceburg, IN 

Authors: 

Christina Emery (ARI), Aaron Comstock (University of Indiana East), Logan York (ARI) 

Abstract: 

In the American Midwest, farmers tend to be hesitant to notify authorities that there is an archaeological site on their property since many believe they will be told to cease cultivating due to the presence of artifacts or burials. This perceived threat to agricultural livelihood creates a divide between farmers and archaeologists, who seek to document, understand, and preserve archaeological remains, many of which are found in today’s farm fields. Most importantly, in these situations the perspectives of Tribal members are rarely, if ever, included into the study and preservation of archaeological sites, an exclusion that perpetuates a tragic colonial legacy. This project reflects a template for bringing together these stakeholder communities into a mutually beneficial and ultimately sustainable solution to preserve the Guard site, the remains of a Fort Ancient village near Lawrenceburg, Indiana. By working with Tribal colleagues, the Indiana Department of Natural Resources, local farmers, and the Lawrenceburg community, we developed, implemented, and are documenting a new landscape model. This model incorporates respectful commemorative gardens, minimally invasive cash crops, and a native species pollinator compartment to transform an agricultural field that was slowly destroying a unique precontact site into a sustainable, respectful, stewarded landscape.  

Title: 

Neighbor Dynamics: Examining the relationships between potential Fort Ancient households and their intermediate area using paleoethnobotanical remains. 

Authors: 

Christina Emery (ARI), Benjamin Cross (ARI), Marcus Schulenburg (ARI) 

Abstract: 

The Guard Site (12D29), an early Fort Ancient village, was occupied ca. AD 1000-1250 at the onset of the shift from Eastern Agricultural Complex (EAC) to maize agricultural subsistence. This period saw people experimenting with and implementing villages and year-round settlement centered around dependence on maize agriculture. Previous work on structures in Guard has shown that there are patterns in the material culture and subsistence practices across different parts of the village and throughout it’s occupation. A small-scale, additional study will add nuance to the pre-existing dataset. Recent excavations have focused on two structures and an intermediate area. In this poster we examine the macrobotanical assemblages of intra- and inter-structural space in an attempt to identify any differential use of spaces. Currently, we have a limited understanding of the use of space at Fort Ancient villages, in particular in relation to household subsistence activities. This study, through its focus on paleobotanical remains found in both intra- and inter-structural spaces, allows us the unique opportunity to clarify future interpretations of spatial patterns at Fort Ancient villages. 

Title: 

Testing Eastern Woodlands Metallurgy: Reconstructing a conducive history  

Authors:  

Logan York (ARI), Marcus Schulenburg (ARI), Evan Rouse (University of Cincinnati), Aaron Comstock (Indiana University East) 

Abstract: 
Native America has a history of copper working extending back 8,500 years, making early Native coppersmiths contemporary with early copper work documented at Yarim Tepe and the Timna Valley in southwest Asia. The archaeology of coppersmithing in the Midwest has identified quarries in Michigan’s Keweenaw Peninsula, and a workshop in Cahokia, where it is assumed copper was worked in open fires. With these open fires they supposedly created both sheets of copper to be chiseled into artful pieces and crafted utilitarian copper tools. Based on these finished pieces, we seek to examine the efficacy of working copper in open fires by experimentally reproducing both sheet copper art and copper tools. Our methods are guided by a combination of the archaeological record, previous experimental archaeology, and oral traditions of copperwork maintained among descendant communities. The data derived from this study provide both empirical and experiential insights into the time, energy, and methods that likely accompanied Native copper production and frame future investigations by our team. 

LAND ACKNOWLEDGEMENT STATEMENT:

The Archaeological Research Institute (ARI) recognizes that the land we study and steward is the homeland of many peoples. We acknowledge the myaamia (Miami), Shawanwa (Shawnee), Peewaalia (Peoria), Kiikaapoi (Kickapoo) and the multitude of nations who call this their homelands.  

ARI recognizes the violence inflicted upon the indigenous Nations of the Ohio Valley, including their forced removal following treaties such as Fort Finney and Greenville. ARI condemns the intentional destruction of their languages and cultures. ARI condemns the continuous discrimination against the living Native peoples throughout the United States.  

ARI recognizes that these peoples are not of the past, but are vibrant living nations. ARI recognizes that Native Americans are a diverse, resilient people with a deep enduring history worth knowing.  In that light ARI extends our respect to all Native peoples both past and present.  

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