Front Cover
 Table of Contents
 Editor's page
 Analysis of skeletal material from...
 The Joseph reed shell ring - Michael...
 A reduction deduction - A clovis-like...
 Book reviews
 About the authors
 Back Cover

Group Title: Florida anthropologist
Title: The Florida anthropologist
Full Citation
Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00027829/00089
 Material Information
Title: The Florida anthropologist
Abbreviated Title: Fla. anthropol.
Physical Description: v. : ill. ; 24 cm.
Language: English
Creator: Florida Anthropological Society
Conference on Historic Site Archaeology
Publisher: Florida Anthropological Society.
Place of Publication: Gainesville
Frequency: quarterly[]
two no. a year[ former 1948-]
Subject: Indians of North America -- Antiquities -- Periodicals -- Florida   ( lcsh )
Antiquities -- Periodicals -- Florida   ( lcsh )
Genre: periodical   ( marcgt )
Summary: Contains papers of the Annual Conference on Historic Site Archeology.
Dates or Sequential Designation: v. 1- May 1948-
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00027829
Volume ID: VID00089
Source Institution: University of Florida
Holding Location: Department of Special Collections and Area Studies, George A. Smathers Libraries, University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier: oclc - 01569447
lccn - 56028409
issn - 0015-3893

Table of Contents
    Front Cover
        Front Cover 1
        Front Cover 2
    Table of Contents
        Page 57
    Editor's page
        Page 58
    Analysis of skeletal material from Calico Hill, Florida - A question of paleopathology vs. taphonomy - Rachel K. Smith
        Page 59
        Page 60
        Page 61
        Page 62
        Page 63
        Page 64
        Page 65
        Page 66
    The Joseph reed shell ring - Michael Russo and Gregory Heide
        Page 67
        Page 68
        Page 69
        Page 70
        Page 71
        Page 72
        Page 73
        Page 74
        Page 75
        Page 76
        Page 77
        Page 78
        Page 79
        Page 80
        Page 81
        Page 82
        Page 83
        Page 84
        Page 85
        Page 86
        Page 87
        Page 88
    A reduction deduction - A clovis-like fluted base from the Chipola river - Louis D. Tesar and Jeff Whitfield
        Page 89
        Page 90
        Page 91
        Page 92
        Page 93
        Page 94
        Page 95
        Page 96
        Page 97
        Page 98
        Page 99
        Page 100
        Page 101
        Page 102
        Page 103
        Page 104
    Book reviews
        Page 105
        Page 106
        Page 107
        Page 108
    About the authors
        Page 109
    Back Cover
        Back Cover
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JUNE 2002


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NOTE: In addition to the above Editorial Review Board members, the review comments of others knowledgeable in a manuscript's
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Volume 55 Number 2
June 2002


Editor's Page. Ryan J. Wheeler 58


Analysis of Skeletal Material from Calico Hill, Florida:
A Question of Paleopathology vs. Taphonomy. Rachel K. Smith 59
The Joseph Reed Shell Ring. Michael Russo and Gregory Heide. 67

A Reduction Deduction: A Clovis-Like Fluted Base from the Chipola River
Louis D. Tesar and Jeff Whitfield 89


Bonney and Paredes: Anthropologists andIndians in the New South. Brad M. Biglow 105

Moore: The Southern and Central Alabama Expeditions of Clarence Bloomfield Moore.
Greg S. Hendryx 106
Smith: Coosa: The Rise and Fall of a Southeastern Mississippian Chiefdom.
Jeffrey M. Mitchem 107

About the Authors 109
Cover: Claystone figurine excavated from Calico Hill by Vernon Lamme, replica by J. Clarence Simpson

Copyright Notice: Authors retain all copyrights to materials published in this journal, other materials are copyrighted
by the Florida Anthropological Society.

Published by the
ISSN 0015-3893


This issue contains three articles and three book reviews.
The articles cover a diverse range of subjects, geographic
areas, and time periods. Most readers should find something
they can relate to and enjoy.
Rachel Smith's article presents information on several
burials recovered from the enigmatic Calico Hill area, an
upland with several important precontact period sites adjacent
to the Wacissa River. Smith reexamines an earlier contention
that several of these burials exhibited lesions indicative of
multiple myeloma. She argues that these lesions are actually
postmortem damage to the bone caused by palmetto roots,
rather than evidence for this rare condition. Archaeologists
will appreciate this paper, especially those of us who have dug
in sites that are heavily laden with palm and palmetto roots,
as will laboratory workers who may be confronted with
skeletal material that has similar damage.
Mike Russo and Greg Heide, in the second article, present
a condensed version of their research at the Joseph Reed Shell
Ring in coastal Martin County. Mike and Greg have been
steadily investigating extant shell ring sites throughout the
Southeast, including those in Florida. Once thought to be a
site type associated with coastal South Carolina and Georgia,
it has become clear that cultures well into southern Florida
were constructing shell rings. The Joseph Reed site research
has an added twist-unlike most other Late Archaic shell rings

that are ceramic or have fiber-tempered ceramics, this site
has examples of sherds with spiculate paste associated with
rather early dates. Unfortunately, it is difficult to assess
Russo and Heide's findings since the Archaic of southeastern
Florida is so poorly known. Hopefully this pioneering
research will lead to further work in the area and more
investigations of early sites, including the Joseph Reed site.
The final article, by Louis Tesar and Jeff Whitfield, will
appeal to many of us who have found broken examples of
very rare artifacts. In this case Tesar and Whitfield attempt
to reconstruct some of the stages in the life of a Clovis point
found in the Chipola River, including manufacture, use,
breakage, and loss. I think many readers will enjoy this
article, as it tries to get at the human behaviors that are
behind material culture.
Look for the next issue of The Florida Anthropologist,
which will include more timely articles as well as notes on
this years FAS award recipients and abstracts of papers
presented at the FAS annual meeting.
There also are book reviews by Brad Biglow, Greg
Hendryx, and JeffMitchem. Enjoy!



JUNE 2002

VOL. 55(2)



Department ofAnthropology, Florida State University, Tallahassee, FL 32301
E-mail: rksofd@hotmail.com

Calico Hill is a large sand dune that stretches approxi-
mately 2 kilometers along the western bank of the Wacissa
River in Jefferson County, Florida. For many years, the site
has been a target for amateurs seeking ceramic and lithic
remains from Native American archaeological sites. Profes-
sional excavations have yet to be undertaken, although several
sites have been recorded (8JE708, 8JE186, 8JE801). The area
has been extensively logged for pine stumps, which were
utilized in the production of gunpowder (Dunbar, personal
communication 2001). Site files obtained from the Florida
Bureau of Archaeological Research report several individual
mound sites within the extensive dune deposit. According to
a report by Calvin Jones in September of 1988, the majority of
the ceramics found among these sites consist primarily of early
Weeden Island-style pottery, primarily plain and Wakulla
Check Stamped sherds. Numerous other ceramic styles have
been collected from the area, including Deptford, Archaic
(early, middle, and late), Norwood, and Safety Harbor. Lithics
found within the dune include pre-form points indicative of the
Paleoindian period. According to Jones (1988) the range in
style for both ceramics and lithics indicate the occupation of
Calico Hill dates within the range of 10,000 years ago to circa
AD 1500. Lacking provenience information, an exact date for
the skeletal remains considered here is unknown.
The skeletal remains were obtained during a salvage
excavation undertaken in the early 1970s. No records of the
excavation have been located, thus the only information
concerning provenience are the burial numbers on the storage
containers. An article, by Morse et al. (1974) appeared in the
Bulletin of the New York Academy of Medicine describing
several prehistoric sites in Florida containing skeletal material
exhibiting lesions indicative of multiple myeloma. The
skeletal remains from Burials One and Two from Calico Hill
were included among the material diagnosed with this condi-
tion, based on small, circular lesions found on the cranial
material from Burial Two and the cranial and postcranial
material from Burial One. However, following detailed re-
analysis of the remains, this diagnosis was called into ques-

Material and Methods

Both burials are extremely fragmentary. Burial One was
the only burial that contained significant amounts of post-
cranial material. The remaining burials contained minimal
amounts of fragmented skeletal material. The remains from

Burial One and Two had been repeatedly treated with Krylon
following excavation (Morse et al. 1974). Following excava-
tion and treatment, each bag was labeled with burial and bag
number when multiple bags were utilized.
In October 2001, the contents of each bag were inventoried
and cranial and post-cranial measurements were obtained
when possible. Dental measurements, dental attrition, and
sexing for the burials were scored according to Buikstra and
Ubelaker (1994) and stature was calculated for Burial One
according to Steele and Bramblett (1988). Lacking proveni-
ence information, it is unclear whether the individual burials
were isolated from each other, since Burial One contains two
atlases (C-1) and two axes (C-2). A minimum number of
individuals (MNI) was calculated based on the designation of
six separate burials, with an MNI of seven individuals repre-
sented within the site. The following section contains infor-
mation obtained from the analysis of each burial and the
descriptions of the physical remains, scored for completeness
according to Steele and Bramblett (1988). The burials are
labeled according to the information provided on the original
storage bags.

Analysis of Burials

The following section provides a brief description of the
skeletal material identified within each burial. The individual
elements, as well as scores for completeness, are included in
Table 1.

Burial One

Burial One contains an MNI of two based on the presence
of two first and second cervical vertebrae. The majority of the
remains represent a young, adult female. Sex assessment was
based on morphology of the mandibular mental eminence, the
greater sciatic notch, and the right mastoid process. Age was
determined to be that of a young adult based on degree of
closure of the ecto- and endocranial sutures. Teeth were intact
and measurable.
The molars exhibit full cusp removal, with the exception
of the third molars, which are only moderately worn. The
remaining teeth in the maxilla exhibit full cusp removal on the
molars with the exception of the third molar and moderate
cusp removal of the premolars. There is no dentin exposure.
The mandible contains two extra premolars that are impacted
within the lingual surface of the mandible (Figure 1).


VOL. 55(2)


JUNE 2002


Table 1. Burial inventory.

Burial 1
Maxilla, right (5) containing C, PM3, PM4, Ml, M2, M3
Mandible (5) containing right II, right 12, right C, right
PM1, right PM2, right Ml, right M2, right M3; left I1, left
12, left C, left PM1, left PM2, left Ml, left M2, left M3;
Frontal bone (4)
Parietal, left (4)
Parietal, right (3)
Occipital (2)
Petrous pyramid, left (5)
Temporal, right (2)
Femur, right (4)
Femur, left (4)
Humerus, right (4)
Calcaneous, right (2)
First rib, left (4)
Proximal end of radius (1)
Os coxae, left (2)
Os coxae, right (2)
3 UID ribs two left, one right (2)

Burial 2
Calotte (4)
Temporal, left (2)
UID cranial fragments (1)
Maxilla, right (2)
3 upper molars RM1, RM2 LM1

Burial 3
UID femur shaft (2)
Mandible, left (1) containing: LM2, LM3, and a fragment of
UID loose molar in heavy concretion
UID skeletal fragments in heavy concretion

Burial 4
Parietal, left (4)
Parietal, right (1)
Temporal, right (2)
Temporal, left (2)
UID os coxae (1)
Sacrum (1)
Acetabulum, right (2)
Tibia, right (1)
Tibia, left (3)

Burial 5
Occipital (2)
Temporal, left (2)
Femur, right (2)
Humerus, right (1)
UID os coxae (1)
UID vertebra (1)
UID cranial fragments (1)

Burial 8
Frontal (2)
Parietal, right (2)
Occipital condyle (1)
Temporal, right (4)
Temporal, left (3)
Maxilla (5) containing LP1, LP2, LM1, LM2,
LM3, RP2, RM1, RM2
Mandible (4) containing LC, LP1, LP2, LM1,
LM2, RM1, RM2
Atlas (3)
Axis (3)

Bag of Burnt Bones
Head of femur, right; distal end of humerus, left;
proximal end of radius; proximal end of ulna; UID
vertebral fragments; UID long bone fragments.

NOTE: Scoring for completeness: (1) element only represented by a few fragments: (2) element less than half intact: (3) -
approximately half the element intact: (4) element approximately three-quarters intact: (5) element complete.

Burial Three

Burial Two contains the remains of a young adult female.
Sex assessment was based on morphology of the supra-orbital
ridge/glabella. Age was determined by ecto- and endocranial
suture closures. There is full cusp removal on all molars with
no dentin exposure.

Burial Three contains heavily concreted, fragmentary
remains. The remains were embedded in hardened matrix,
making detailed analysis impossible. No sex or age determina-
tion was obtained, due to the nature of the remains. Full cusp
removal was exhibited on all molars present, although unable
to gauge exposure of dentin due to weathering of remains.
Enamel rims appear complete. Full dentin exposure was

Burial Two

2002 VOL. 55(2)


Figure 1. Mandibular supernumerary premolars from Burial One.

Figure 2. Endocranial surface of the calotte from Burial Two showing
"punched out" lesions and root damage. Note roots still adhering to the
vault surface.

exhibited with the enamel rim intact on the UID loose molar.
Based on extreme attrition of the molar surfaces, this appears Ace
to be the remains of an older adult. myelon
the craig

Burial Four

Burial Four contains the fragmentary
remains of an adult male. Sexing was
based on morphology of the mastoid
processes. Age was determined based on
ectocranial suture closures.

Burial Five

Burial Five contains the fragmentary
remains of a single adult. Sex was am-
S biguous based on morphology of the
mastoid process and nuchal crest.

Burial Eight

Burial Eight contains the remains of
an elderly adult male. Sex assessment
was based on morphology of the supra-
orbital ridge/glabella and mastoid pro-
cesses. Age was determined by palatine
and ectocranial sutures, which showed
significant closure. There is full dentin exposure
with enamel rims still intact on all remaining teeth
within the mandible and maxilla. Only one third
molar has erupted, located within the left side of
maxilla. There are multiple (two) mental foramen
on the left side of the mandible.


The skeletal remains therefore represent a total
of seven individuals: two young adult females from
Burial One and Two, one adult male from Burial
Five, one elderly male from Burial Eight, and the
remaining three individuals of indeterminate sex and
age. Also included with the remains from Calico Hill
is a bag of burnt skeletal fragments, removed from
the site at the time of excavation. There are no
records of provenience for the remains, so it is
unknown whether they were excavated or recovered
from surface collection. Identifiable human frag-
ments are included in Table 1. All are charred, and
if not associated with the unburned burials, represent
minimally an additional individual.
Table 2 provides dental measurements of the
Calico Hill material. Table 3 provides comparisons
of these measurements. The metrics available from
Calico Hill are comparable to other dental material
from prehistoric Florida sites.

Paleopathology or Taphonomy

ording to Morse et al. (1974) the diagnosis of multiple
la was based on numerous circular lesions present on
nial and postcranial remains of Burials One and Two.




Table 3. Comparisons of dental measurements. Blanks indicate no data. All measurements in millimeters.

P1 P2 M1 M2 M3

Mesiodistal Diameters of the Mandible
Burial 1 6.96 6.95 10.45 9.87 11.26
7.19 11.04 10.19 10.53

Burial 3 12.31
Burial 8 6.99 6.59 10.36 10.84
Average 6.97 6.91 10.61 10.30 11.36
Standard Deviation 0.02 0.30 0.36 0.49 0.89
Mesiodistal Diameters of the Maxilla
Burial 1 6.71 9.13 9.53
Burial 2 9.94
Burial 8 6.61 6.51 11.23 9.55 9.82
7.25 9.29

Average 6.82 11.23 9.32 9.76
Standard Deviation 0.38 0.21 0.21
Buccolingual Diameters of the Mandible
Burial 1 7.42 7.99 10.95 9.22 10.39
7.37 7.88 11.00 10.38 10.04

Burial 3 11.74 10.45
Burial 8 8.66 9.44 11.89 10.93 11.77

Average 7.81 8.43 11.28 10.89 10.66
Standard Deviation 0.73 0.87 0.52 1.16 0.76
Buccolingual Diameters of the Maxilla
Burial 1 9.14 10.71
Burial 2 11.64 11.69
Burial 8 10.04 9.32 12.03 9.34
Average 9.23 10.58
Standard Deviation 0.12 1.18

analysis, the skeletal remains from Calico Hill provide
additional information about the early inhabitants of northern


I wish to thank the following people: Dr. Glen Doran, for
suggesting the analysis of the Calico Hill remains and for his
continued support: Dr. Chris Stojanowski, for his guidance
and assistance throughout the analysis: Dr. Dave Dickel, for
his assistance in analysis and for providing comparative
material: Dr. Anthony Falsetti, for his assistance and profes-

sional opinion: and Jim Dunbar, for always being so generous
with his time and information.

References Cited

Aufderheide, Arthur C. and Conrad Rodriguez-Martin
1998 The Cambridge Encyclopedia ofHuman Paleopatho-
logy. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge.

Buikstra, Jane E., and Douglas H. Ubelaker (editors)
1994 Standards for Data Collection from Human Skeletal
Remains. Arkansas Archeological Survey Research

2002 VOL. 55(2)



Table 2. Dental measurements, continued.

Burial 8
measurements Mesiodistal Diam. Buccolingual Diam. Crown Height
LM2 10.84 10.93
LM1 10.36 11.89
LP2 6.59 9.44
LP1 6.99 8.66
LC 6.83 8.18
RM3 11.77
RM2 12.19
LM3 9.82 9.34
LM2 9.55 12.03
LP2 6.51 9.32
LP1 6.61 10.04
RP2 7.25
RM1 11.23
RM2 9.29

completely lytic dissolution of bone without reactive new bone
formation (Aufderheide and Rodriguez-Martin 1998:352).
Although the appearance of the lesions on the remains from
Burials One and Two meet this criterion, the other diagnostic
factors associated with multiple myeloma argue against it.
The tumor is rarely found in individuals below the age of 40
years and, in fact, 90% of cases are found in individuals
between the ages of 50 and 60 years of age (Roberts et al.
1995). Close to 98% of patients with multiple myeloma are
older than 40 years of age, with a peak incidence in the
seventh decade (Mirra 1989). There is a great prevalence of
males over females (Ortner and Putschar 1981:264). Authori-
ties suggest that more than 70% of all cases of multiple
myeloma affect males (Reichs 1986). According to a US
National Cancer Survey, the rate of incidence of multiple
myeloma was two to three in 100,000 in 1973 and appears to
be on the increase (Webb 1995).
The diagnostic criteria of multiple myeloma make this
diagnosis highly questionable. The sex and age of the remains
indicate these would be considered rare cases, and the proba-
bility of finding two rare cases of this disease within one burial
site is very low.
The remains were taken to The C.A. Pound Lab at the
University of Florida to be examined by Dr. Anthony Falsetti,
as well as to the Florida Bureau of Archaeological Research,
where they were examined by Dr. Dave Dickel. Falsetti and
Dickel both confirmed a diagnosis of taphonomy due to root
boring. Dickel was able to produce a cranium from his
collections that exhibited the same type of lesions as those seen

on the Calico Hill remains, as well as a cranium displaying
extensive root damage, with roots still in place, protruding
through the vault wall. The margins of the lesions of all of
these cases appear identical.


Calico Hill represents a Native American site in northern
Florida that spans several cultural phases. The lithics and
ceramics recovered from the site indicate that early Floridians
were living and hunting along the shores of the Wacissa River
for an extensive period of time, although whether the site was
a permanent settlement or one of seasonal use is unknown.
Calico Hill also represents the type of case regularly encoun-
tered by anthropologists: remains lacking provenience,
artifacts of extensive temporal designation, and poorly
preserved remains.
Calico Hill is a prime example of the importance of
maintaining collections so as information and diagnostic tools
improve over time remains from earlier excavations may be re-
examined and earlier diagnoses re-evaluated. With the
reburial of skeletal remains, the possibility of reinterpretation
is lost and the ability for additional analysis is impossible.
Calvin Jones' brief site survey of Calico Hill described the
topography, artifacts recovered, and the damage inflicted by
commercial logging and amateur excavators. Only through
more extensive investigation will additional chronological,
cultural, and behavioral information be obtained. In spite of
poor preservation and the sparse data obtained from their



Table 3. Comparisons of dental measurements. Blanks indicate no data. All measurements in millimeters.

P1 P2 Ml M2 M3
Mesiodistal Diameters of the Mandible
Burial 1 6.96 6.95 10.45 9.87 11.26
7.19 11.04 10.19 10.53
Burial 3 12.31
Burial 8 6.99 6.59 10.36 10.84
Average 6.97 6.91 10.61 10.30 11.36
Standard Deviation 0.02 0.30 0.36 0.49 0.89
Mesiodistal Diameters of the Maxilla
Burial 1 6.71 9.13 9.53
Burial 2 9.94
Burial 8 6.61 6.51 11.23 9.55 9.82
7.25 9.29
Average 6.82 11.23 9.32 9.76
Standard Deviation 0.38 0.21 0.21
Buccolingual Diameters of the Mandible
Burial 1 7.42 7.99 10.95 9.22 10.39
7.37 7.88 11.00 10.38 10.04
Burial 3 11.74 10.45
Burial 8 8.66 9.44 11.89 10.93 11.77

Average 7.81 8.43 11.28 10.89 10.66
Standard Deviation 0.73 0.87 0.52 1.16 0.76
Buccolingual Diameters of the Maxilla
Burial 1 9.14 10.71
Burial 2 11.64 11.69
Burial 8 10.04 9.32 12.03 9.34
Average 9.23 10.58
Standard Deviation 0.12 1.18

analysis, the skeletal remains from Calico Hill provide
additional information about the early inhabitants of northern


I wish to thank the following people: Dr. Glen Doran, for
suggesting the analysis of the Calico Hill remains and for his
continued support: Dr. Chris Stojanowski, for his guidance
and assistance throughout the analysis: Dr. Dave Dickel, for
his assistance in analysis and for providing comparative
material: Dr. Anthony Falsetti, for his assistance and profes-

sional opinion: and Jim Dunbar, for always being so generous
with his time and information.

References Cited

Aufderheide, Arthur C. and Conrad Rodriguez-Martin
1998 The Cambridge Encyclopedia ofHuman Paleopatho-
logy. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge.

Buikstra, Jane E., and Douglas H. Ubelaker (editors)
1994 Standards for Data Collection from Human Skeletal
Remains. Arkansas Archeological Survey Research

2002 VOL. 55(2)



Series no. 44, Fayetteville.

Jones, Calvin
1988 Survey of Two Large Weeden Island Sites on Calico
Hill in Jefferson County, Florida. Unpublished
report on file, Florida Bureau of Archaeological
Research (8JE186).

Milanich, Jerald T.
1994 Archaeology of Precolumbian Florida. University
Press of Florida, Gainesville.

Mirra, Joseph M. L.
1989 Bone Tumors: Clinical, Radiologic, and Pathologic
Correlations. Lea & Febiger, Philadelphia.

Morse, Dan, R.C. Dailey, and Jennings Bunn
1974 Prehistoric Multiple Myeloma. Bulletin ofNew York
Academy ofMedicine 50 (4):447-458.

Ortner, Donlad J., and Walter G.J. Putschar
1981 Identification of Pathological Conditions in Human
Skeletal Remains. Smithsonian Contributions to
Anthropology no. 28, Smithsonian Institution Press,

Roberts, Charlotte, and Keith Manchester
1995 The Archaeology of Disease. Cornell University
Press, Ithaca.

Webb, Stephen
1995 Palaeopathology ofAboriginal Australians: Health
and Disease across a Hunter-gatherer Continent.
Cambridge University Press, Cambridge.



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Johnson Building, Suite 120, Tallahassee, FL 32310


The Joseph Reed Shell Ring (8MT13) is a semi-circular
piling of oyster shell rising up to 2 meters in height. The site
is surrounded by mangrove swamp on all sides except the east
where it abuts an Atlantic Ocean beach dune (Figure 1'). The
site was first recorded in 1965 by William Sears and Charles
Hoffman in the University of Florida Archaeology Laboratory
(UFAL) files (Ryan Wheeler, personal communication; see
also Sears and Hoffman 1965 as cited in Carr et al. 1995:54-
55). It was listed in the Florida Master Site File (FMSF) in
1979 as the Joseph Reed Mound, but we refer to it in this
paper as the Joseph Reed Shell Ring. In 1966, Wm. Jerald
Kennedy completed a contour map, apparently with the help
of Sears (Carr et al. 1995:54). This was later published in
Fryman et al. (1980) who suggested a number of possible
functions for the unusually shaped site, including Sears'
opinion that the site was similar to the famous shell rings
known in Georgia and South Carolina (Fryman et al. 1980:20,
41). Alternatively, they suggested the ring might be related to
the prehistoric Belle Glade circular earthworks commonly
found in the nearby Everglades and dating between 2800 and
1200 B.P. Or, based on local oral accounts, it may have been
an historic construction a dike used to prevent flooding of an
orange grove in the interior of the ring (Fryman et al.
Our limited investigation of the site was preceded by only
one reported investigation conducted in 1979. In that investi-
gation, a shallow test unit was placed in mounded shell to a
depth of 30 cm where a "heavy degree of compaction" halted
the investigation. The test yielded "oyster and clam shell and
one St. Johns Plain sherd" (Fryman et al. 1980:40). Much
later, Kennedy and Wheeler (1998:2) state that Sears, at some
unspecified time, had collected from the surface three other St.
Johns and one sand-tempered plain sherd from the site. Carr
et al. (1995:54) confirm that St. Johns sherds were indeed
collected by Sears (Sears and Hoffman 1965). At one point
Fryman et al. (1980) characterized the site's total assemblage
as containing not the one sherd they found, but a "few pot-
sherds" indicating, perhaps, that the authors were also aware
of Sears' earlier collection, notes of which were then available
at the Florida Master Site File (Ryan Wheeler, personal
communication). In either case, the report concludes that
"pottery is very scarce" at the site (Fryman et al. 1980:41, 46).
Carr et al. (1995) found no ceramics or other artifacts on the
surface of the site, although no systematic, intensive investiga-
tion was conducted.

Ultimately, Fryman et al. (1980) characterized the site as
a shell ring of a diameter typical of those found in South
Carolina and Georgia (but more "steep sided"). In actuality,
it is four times the size of the average, and nearly three times
the diameter of the largest of the Georgia/South Carolina rings
(Figure 2). In fact, based on the Kennedy (in Fryman et al.
1980) contour map, the site appears to be, at least in interior
diameter, the largest shell ring in North America. What is
unusual about the ring is its ceramics. Most Florida Late
Archaic ceramic-bearing shell rings contain exclusively fiber-
tempered pottery, not Glades or St. Johns pottery types found
typically in more recent prehistoric contexts in South and
Northeast Florida, respectively. This brings into question the
site's cultural affiliation. Carr et al. (1995:55) have suggested
that the few St. Johns ceramics found on the surface and near
surface environments, as well as the fact that the site is a shell
ring, relates it to the Orange culture of Northeast Florida. But
recently shell rings have also been found in South Florida
(Dickel 1992; Houck 1996; Russol991; Russo and Heide
2001). Whether in Northeast or South Florida, however, no
other ring has yielded either Glades or St. Johns pottery from
undisturbed contexts.

1999 Excavations at the Joseph Reed Shell Ring

Four 1 x 1 meter excavation units were placed at the ring
site. Two were placed on the southern arm of the half circle,
one on the northern arm, and one in the non-shell midden
central area. Except the first meter of Unit 2 which was dug
in arbitrary 10 cm levels and Unit 3 which was dug in natural
levels, all unit proveniences were dug in arbitrary 20 cm
levels. All midden was dry screened through 14" mesh ,
artifacts were collected from the screens, and fauna was
discarded except as noted below. One small feature sample
was screened through 1/16" mesh and is described below (see
Russo and Heide 2000 for a full description of methodology).

Excavation Unit 1

A thin layer of humus overlies the dense oyster midden that
constitutes the upper levels of the ring in Unit 1. The underly-
ing midden consists of dense oyster, which extends from the
surface (at approximately 2 meters above mean sea level) to 90
cmbd (Figure 3). It is a single deposit of shell distinguished
into two zones, 1 and 2, only by slight differences in
pedogenically colored thin soil matrices. In other words,
Zones 1 and 2 represent visually indistinguishable cultural


VOL. 55(2)

JUNE 2002


Figure 1. The Joseph Reed Shell Ring (after Kennedy 1966, in Fryman et al. 1980).

deposits, possibly a single deposit of shell.
Below Zone 2 is a 15 cm thick strata of white sand (Zone
3). It is unclear whether this deposit is natural (i.e., aeolian or
wave deposited) or of human origin, but it contains no midden
material. Below it lies Zone 4 (Feature 1 and la), a dark layer
of sand filled with scattered charcoal and dense oyster shell.
Initially this was identified in the field as a feature because it
appeared in plan view as a dark streak against the white sand
background (Russo and Heide 2000). Upon further excavation
the charcoal laden soil spread across the entire unit. Conse-
quently, it more accurately is described as a stratum or
horizon, perhaps a living floor, whose sand is stained dark by
charcoal and other discarded organic matter.
Below this midden floor lies Zone 5, another deposit of

clean (free of artifacts and shell), white sand between 5 and 25
cm thick similar to Zone 3. Below Zone 5 lies Feature 2 which
consists of charcoal impregnated sands. Near the south and
west walls of the unit, a small pit feature (Feature 3) was
contiguous with, but distinguishable from Feature 2 by the
inclusion of greater amounts of oyster shell. Both features
were lithified within a calcium carbonate matrix formed from
dissolved shell (cf. Palmer and Williams 1977; Russo and
Heide 2000; cf. Iceland 2000a). We identified only the edges
of these features. The remaining portions lay outside the unit
as indicated in the wall profiles. Thus, the complete shapes
and functions of the two features remain unknown. We
interpret their surfaces to be an activity floor similar to Zone

2002 VOL. 55(2)


Table 1. Radiocarbon dates from Joseph Reed Shell Ring, early non-fiber-tempered ceramic bearing sites, and other sites mentioned in the text.

Un- Radiocarbonl
Lab Un Conven- 13C Maximum of Calibrated Age Ranges B.P. Associated Radiocarbon/
Provenience Number Material corrected tional Age :(intercept) 1 sigma [2 sigma] Ceramics Archaeological
Age BP Reference
Joseph Reed Shell Ring (8Mt13)
Unit 1, Feature 2 GX-26118 charcoal 2880+/-130 2850+/-130 -26.6%o [3354] 3206 (2951) 2784 [2746] above 1 spiculate
Unit 1, Feature 3 WK 7435 oyster 2868+/-58 3280+/-60 -0.2%o [3306] 3208 (3131) 3022 [2933] 1 spiculate
Unit 1, 80-190 cmbd GX 25976 oyster 3060+/-80 3455+/-80 -0.6%o [3527] 3426 (3340) 3245 [3139] none
Unit 2, 48 cmbd GX 25977 oyster 3010+/-75 3425+/-75 +0.3%. [3464] 3379 (3318) 3210 [3103] 4 spiculate
Unit 2,155 cmbd WK 7436 oyster 2935+/-55 3340+/-60 -0.6%. [3351] 3298 (3205) 3116 [3014] 3 spiculate
Unit 4, 0-20 cmbd GX 26119 oyster 2880+/-80 3280+/-80 -0.7%. [3335] 3232 (3131) 2989 [2875] above spiculate & s-t
J-5 (8Ja6)
Zone 9 M-394 charcoal 3150+/-250 b3150+/-253 -25%. [3979] 3679 (3375, 3369, 3363) 2999 [2754] 18 S.J.; 186 Orange Bullen 1958:341
Mulberry Midden (8Cr697)
EU1, Level 2 Beta 50711 mercenaria 2990+/-70 '3391+/-70 0.0%. [3428] 3349 (3264) 3179 [3068] s-t plain Lee et al. 1993
EU1, Level 2 Beta 53141 busycon 3000+/-80 3430+1-80 +0.55%. [3472] 3387 (3321) 3210 [3095] s-t plain Lee et al. 1993
Caxambas Point (8Cr107x1)
T3/S109, 60-80cmbd 1-4573 charcoal 3400+/-100 3400+/-108 -25%. [3957] 3827 (3675, 3673, 3638) 3476 [3386] s-t plain Buckley & Willis 1972
T2/S100, 60-80cmbd 1-4569 charcoal 3155+/-100 b3155+/-108 -25%. [3633] 3471(3376) 3265 [3078] s-t & Orange Buckley & Willis 1972
T3/S109, 20-40cmbd 1-4571 charcoal 3375+/-105 b3375+/-112 -25% [3893] 3814 (3633, 3615, 3613, 3594, 3594) s-t & Orange Buckley & Willis 1972
3471 [3364]
Palmer/Hill Cottage Midden (8So2)
Test A, 2-2.5' bd G-597 mercenaria 3225+/-120 -3626+/-120 0.0 % [3832] 3677 (3533) 3379 [3256] s-t, S.J. & Orange Bullen & Bullen 1976
Test A, 1' bd G-596 busycon 3350+/-120 '3751+/-120 0.0%. [3987] 3834 (3678) 3539 [3382] s-t, S.J. & Orange Bullen & Bullen 1976
Ft. Center (80113)
M.B. 3820L490, L-5 1-3556 charcoal 2400+/-105 2400+/-105 -25%. [2794] 2711 (2357) 2338 [2154] 23 S.J., s-t, sf-t plain Sears 1982
MAR 8 (8Cr112)
80 cmbs 1-6550 charcoal 4965+/-100 b4965+/-1081 -25%. [5927] 5888 (5660) 5596 [5475] S.J., Perico, Orange Widmer 1974
Mt. Elizabeth (8Mt30)
TU-A, Level 11 Beta-11651 busycon 3195+/-70 0.0%. [4141] 4059 (3928) 3837 [3729] no ceramics Janus 1998
TU-A, Level 3 Beta-11650 mercenaria 3970+/-50 0.0%. [4124] 4060 (3965) 3886 [3824] 1 Orange Janus 1998
Scheurich Midden (8PB9261)
Level 9 Beta-141466 shell 3370+/-601 3771+/-60 0.0%. [3869] 3809 (3692) 3627 [3551] no ceramics
'S.J. = St. Johns; s-t = sand-tempered; sf-t = semi-fiber-tempered
bit is unclear if the reported age is uncorrected or corrected. For the purposes of this report, the reported age was treated as uncorrected and normalized for "C at -25%. for
charcoal samples resulting in the same age for uncorrected and conventional ages, but often slightly different sigma. The conventional ages were then calibrated.
eThe date was obtained from shell and was reported as uncorrected or is assumed for this paper to be an uncorrected date. "C was assumed to be 0.0%. +/-0 and normalized to
-25%. to obtain conventional age. This process and calibration was conducted through Calib 4.3 (Stuiver and Reimer 1993).
The age was reported as conventional; i.e., no uncorrected date given.
All calibrated ages were determined with Calib 4.3 (Stuiver and Reimer 1993) whose calibration data is found in Stuiver, Reimer and Braziunas 1998 and Stulver et al. 1998.


Bonita Bay


Sapelo Cannon's

Skidaway Island West
Cr I
Oemler Busch Knck


Joseph Reed


Horr's Island
111 V "

South Carolina

Large Ford Lighthouse Horse Island Ftg Island 3
0 0 C Fig Island 1
Auld Buzzard Creek Sewee ) Plae
0 Fig Island 2 o0 ao
Sea Pines Chester Hanckel meters

Figure 2. Florida, Georgia, and South Carolina Archaic
shell rings.

Below these features lies another deposit of white sand,
Zone 6, interrupted only by two small oyster midden deposits
(Features 4 and 5) in between 115 and 140 cmbd, both of
which lay partially outside the unit. Due to time constraints,
excavation of the unit was terminated at 150 cmbd. However,
a posthole test was placed in the southeast corner of the unit
and dug to 200 cmbd. Another deposit of dense oyster and
calcium carbonate (Zone 7) was encountered at 190 cmbd, but
its bottom was not reached.
A 1C adjusted (conventional) radiocarbon age of 3455 +/-
80 B.P.2 (3340 cal B.P.) was obtained from the lowest shell-
containing strata, the ceramic Zone 7. Whether ceramics are
actually absent from Zone 7 (Figure 3) or the sample was too
small to assure representative artifact recovery cannot be
determined.3 Conventional dates were obtained from adjacent
Feature 3 (3280 +/-60 B.P.) and Feature 2 (2850 +/-130 B.P.)
some 60 cm above Zone 7 (Table 1). The Feature 2 age is
based on charcoal, and Feature 3 is based on shell making
their dates most comparable with calibration. When cali-
brated, the two ages overlap between 3022 and 3206 cal B.P. at
one sigma (Table 1) and could be contemporaneous.
Few artifacts were recovered from the unit one unworked
piece of sandstone, twenty-five pottery sherds, and three small
lithic flakes. The sandstone and twenty-three of the potsherds
were from the upper oyster midden, Zone 2 (Figure 3). One
sherd was recovered from the living floor (Zone 4) and another
from Feature 3. All artifacts were recovered from shell-
bearing strata. No sherds or other artifacts were recovered
from the sand zones (3, 5 and 6). Chalky plain wares were
found stratigraphically lower than sand-tempered wares.
The three small lithic flakes were recovered from a 1/16"
screened sample of Feature 3. All three are small pressure

flakes, one of which has been thermally altered. Along with
oyster shell and vertebrate bone remains, numerous calcium
carbonate fragments and thermally fused sand particles
identified as fulgurites were also present in the feature (Russo
and Heide 2000).

Excavation Unit 2

Unit 2 was placed 40 meters northwest of Unit 1 on top of
a high point in the shell ring approximately 2 meters above sea
level (Figure 1). The unit was excavated to 180 cmbd with a
smaller posthole test placed in the southeast corer to 240
cmbd (Figure 4). Observable midden strata (consisting mostly
of dense oyster) are indicated by slight differences in the color
and amount of soil mixed with the shell. These differences in
Zones 1 and 2 were likely produced pedogenically rather than
culturally. That is, Zones 1 and 2 represent visually indistin-
guishable deposits of oyster shell with lesser amounts of soil in
the lower zone likely due to reduced migration with depth
from the surface. The source of the soil matrix in Zone 3, on
the other hand, likely comes from the sterile sand of Zone 4
below it and upon which the shell was placed. Difference in
soil color among all the zones is minimal and is not likely the
result of cultural activities. While conventional radiocarbon
dates from Zones 2 and 3 appear out of sequence, when
calibrated, they overlap at one sigma (3210-3298 cal. B.P.),
suggesting the oyster from both levels could have been
deposited close in time (Table 1).
Thirty-five potsherds were recovered from Unit 2. As in
Unit 1, all are either chalky or sand-tempered plain with the
chalky wares being stratigraphically lower. A large secondary
flake was recovered from Zone 2. The flake is agatized coral
whose nearest possible quarry sources lie between Tampa Bay
and Tallahassee (Iceland 2000b) indicating a non-local origin
for the artifact. The flake is gray to black in color, is 5.4 cm
long, 3.4 cm wide and 0.9 cm thick, has attached cortex, and,
based on its waxy appearance, was likely heat treated. No
evidence of wear on the platform or use wear is present.
Iceland (2000b) believes it was struck from a biface.
Two fragments of bone pin were recovered from Unit 2
(120-140 cmbd), a tip and a base. The base is slightly ex-
panded. Remnants of a vascular groove are still apparent
confirming that the base fragment was made from a metapo-
dial of a whitetail deer (Odocoileus virginianus). The color of
the pin fragments and the congruities in the cracks in the bone
suggest that the two fragments may be parts of the same pin.
However, they could not be joined (Figure 5).

Excavation Unit 3

Unit 3 was placed about 40 meters north of Unit 1, off the
shell ring in the relatively flat interior (Figure 1). According
to Kennedy's 1966 contour map, the unit was placed in an area
at or below sea level. However, based on our observations, the
unit seems to lie a meter or so above high tide, behind a
coastal sand dune, and is inundated only during storm surges.
The unit was dug to a depth of 150 cmbd whereupon a

2002 VOL. 55(2)



0 I

north wall

east wall

160 GX26118: 2850 +/-130 BP

180- GX25976: 3455 +/-80 BP


oyster in 10 YR 3/2 Wk7435: 3280 +/-60 BP

dense oyster in 10 YR 6/1 calcium carbonate/sand

Figure 3. Excavation Unit 1 wall profiles.

posthole test was excavated in the southeast corner to a depth
of 175 cmbd. The matrix sand was the same from top to
bottom large grained particles mixed with highly ground,
water worn beach shells indicating deposition by wave action.
No artifacts were recovered. We conclude that the sand was
deposited during storm activity and that the original ground
surface of the interior shell ring, if still present, was not
reached by our excavations. Ground water penetration at 160
cmbd prevented further excavation.4

Excavation Unit 4

Unit 4 was placed on the north arm of the shell ring at a
height a meter or so above mean sea level (Figure 1). The unit
was situated in the middle of a dense mangrove swamp only 50
cm above standing water in the surrounding swamp. It was
dug to 90 cmbd with two posthole tests being excavated in the
northeast and southeast corners to a depth of 140 cmbd.
Dense amounts of oyster shell extended from the surface to
80 cmbd (Figure 6). Two zones, 1 and 2, were apparent in the
upper shell midden, distinguishable only by slight changes in
color of the soil matrices. A thin layer of sand with moderate
amounts of oyster (Zone 3) separated zones 1 and 2 from Zone
4, a dense deposit of oyster shell in a dark sandy matrix. At 70
cmbd groundwater seepage interfered with the maintenance of
context. Shovel and trowel excavations were terminated at 90
cmbd and posthole tests placed from 90 to 140 cmbd in the
northwest and southeast corners of the unit. These revealed
that midden deposits (Zone 4) extended to 130 cmbd. Al-
though sterile sands were reached at 130 cmbd, it is unclear if
they represent a C horizon or a sand stratum above more shell

deposits similar to the situation found in the lower levels of
Unit 1. One conventional radiocarbon date on oyster from an
upper level indicates that the ring deposits occurred on or
before 3280 +/-80 B.P. (Table 1).
Only three sherds were recovered from Unit 4. As with the
other units, the ceramics consisted solely of sand-tempered and
chalky plain wares. No other artifacts were recovered from the


All sherds were examined by the authors (Russo and Heide
2000) macroscopically for determinations of sand and chalki-
ness. Cordell (2000) examined the sherds microscopically
under 45x magnification along fresh breaks and other longitu-
dinal sections to identify the presence of sponge spicules, sand,
and other temper or inclusions. General observations on the
size and abundance of spicules and sand were made with
occasional measures of spicule size being undertaken (Cordell
Only two types of ceramics were identified. One, typically
called St. Johns Plain, is characterized by the presence of
abundant sponge spicules, and is referred to here as spiculate
or chalky wares (n=44) due to the fact Joseph Reed lies outside
the St. Johns region, the accepted home territory of the type
(Figure 7). The other, typically called Glades Plain in South
Florida, is characterized by abundant fine to medium sized
sand particles, and is referred to here as sand-tempered plain
(n= 19) due to the fact they have been identified outside their
temporal norm. None of the chalky wares contain sufficient
sand of a coarseness to be classified under the type name Belle

south wall

west wall



Figure 4. Excavation Unit 2 wall profiles.

Glade as defined by Cordell (1992). In Units 1 and 2, and to
a lesser extent Unit 4, chalky wares alone were found in the
lower levels while both chalky and sand-tempered wares were
found in the upper levels. Samples are too small to apply
definitive stratigraphic significance to this distribution.
Only three rims and two bases were recovered. The base
fragments were chalky plain wares from Unit 2. The bases of
both vessels were relatively thick (ranging between 13-16 mm;
Figure 8-D indicates the largest base fragment). They were
similar to Late Archaic period, fiber-tempered flat bottomed
vessels (cf. Sassaman 1993:145, Figure 22) and the Transi-
tional period vessels described in Bullen (1958:338, 1959:45,
1971:67). One chalky plain rim sherd with a flat lip and little-
to-no curvature (Figure 8-A) suggests a straight sided, deep
vessel also found in the Late Archaic, or Transitional periods
(Bullen 1959:45, 1971:67). Of the only other rims, one was
flat lipped and spiculate (Figure 8-B) and one was round
lipped and sand-tempered (Figure 8-C). Both were too small
to determine vessel form or size.

Faunal Remains

Based on observations of all deposits during excavations,
judgmental collections of large fragments of bone from WA"
screen, and analysis of a small sample of fauna from Feature
3, the occupants of the Joseph Reed Shell Ring consumed
oyster in greater numbers than other faunal species. All
vertebrate remains collected from the 4" screens (see Russo

and Heide 2000 for a complete list) were of taxa also found in
a 1/16" screened sample from Feature 3 (Table 2) except for the
following (numbers of fragments in parentheses): deer (7),
mammal (3), bird (1), soft-shell turtle (1), and Jack crevalle
(4). Most of the W" screen recovered bone consisted of fish
(213) and turtle (50). Mammal contributed only ten frag-
ments, out of a total of 275 fragments identifiable beyond
vertebrata classification (Russo and Heide 2000).
Feature 3, a small pit feature, had far greater numbers of
vertebrate remains than any other context encountered,
suggesting that vertebrate resources played a variably signifi-
cant role in the diet of the shell ring occupants. Table 2 lists
all vertebrate taxa identified from the feature as well as non-
commensal/incidental shellfish. Analysis indicates that
freshwater environments were exploited for bowfin, gar, and
at least three kinds of turtle, while the Atlantic Ocean and
beach provided the likely exploitable environments for sea
turtle. However, estuarine environments yielded most of the
fish and shellfish recovered from Joseph Reed.
Hard clam (Mercenaria spp.) was identified in all units,
although it was present in large numbers only in Unit 4.
Analysis suggested a summer period of collection for the clams
from Unit 4 (Russo and Heide 2000). Analysis of a limited
sample of Boonea impressa, a parasite of oysters, suggests a
fall collection of the oyster in Feature 3 (Russo and Heide
2000). Biologists atHobe Sound/Loxahatchee Wildlife Refuge
have determined that the most sea turtles today nest on the
beach between February and May (Leatherbacks, Dermochelys


2002 VOL. 55(2)


Table 2. Faunal remains from Unit 1, Feature 3, Joseph Reed Shell Ring.

Common name Taxon NISP Grams MNI
Oyster Ostreidae 56,169 1,4056.6 0
Crested oyster Ostrea equestris 10 11.41 10
Eastern oyster Crassostrea virginica 1,322 12,116.87 709
Crab Brachyura 3 .09 3
Blue crab Callinectes sapidus 1 1.22 1
Commensal/ 26 taxa, mostly land snail, 5,265 226.44 1,300
incidental shellfish barnacle, mussel
Vertebrata Vertebrates 16,566 99.64 0
Requiem shark Charcharhinidae 12 65.5 1
Bony fishes Osteichthyes 1,998 29.03 0
Gar Lepisosteus spp. 5 .11 1
Bowfin Amia calva 1 .02 1
Herring Clupeidae 3 .01 1
Sea catfish Ariidae 31 4.53 3
Grunts Haemulon sp. 1 .04 1
Atlantic croaker Micropogonias undulatus 3 .19 2
Grouper Mycteroperca sp. 1 .3 1
Drums/sea trout Sciaenidae 1 .43 0
Red drum Sciaenops ocellatus 1 .15 1
Mullet Mugil spp. 17 .71 1
Turtles Testudines 17 30.94 0
Mud turtle Kinosternidae 1 .21 1
Cooter/slider Chrysemys spp. 2 2.98 1
Sea turtle Chelonidae 3 8.1 1
Snake Colubridae 4 .7 1

coriacea), and May and June (Green turtles, Chelonia mydas;
Loggerheads, Caretta caretta) with occasional members of the
latter two species extending nesting into August (Marion
Bailey, personal communication). Assuming the sea turtle
remains found at the site were collected in the spring/summer
when they come ashore to lay eggs, then the preliminary
picture we get is of a multiple seasonal occupation (spring,
summer, fall) at Joseph Reed. Certainly more seasonal
analysis is needed to provide definitive evidence of seasonal,
or possibly year-round, occupation.

Joseph Reed Shell Ring: Subsistence and Feasting

The Joseph Reed Shell Ring represents a Late Archaic
shell ring built around an average conventional age of 3300
B.P. (cal. 3527-2746 B.P.), near the end of the Archaic shell
ring building tradition (Figure 10). At 250 meters across it is
among the largest shell rings in North America. In size and
shape it fits most closely to the Rollins Shell Ring in North-
eastern Florida, which also has an outside diameter of approxi-
mately 250 meters (Figure 2) and was occupied on a conven-
tional radiocarbon average around 3500 B.P.

It has been suggested that the Rollins Shell Ring func-
tioned as a site where ceremony and feasting took place (Russo
and Saunders 1999; Saunders 1999). What ceremonies
occurred coincident with the feasting are unknown. With the
exception of ceramics and worked bone, artifacts are few, with
exotic items limited to occasional chipped stone flakes. Like
all other Archaic shell rings, little to no evidence of social
hierarchy, extensive trade, or inter-regional interaction is
evident in the artifact assemblage.5 Pottery and bone pins
seem mostly mundane and utilitarian. When elaborated, most
of the decorations such as incising on bone pins and ceramics,
seem not to differ from those on similar artifacts found in non-
ceremonial contexts. Utilitarian artifact assemblages also
characterize two other Late Archaic Florida shell rings, Horr's
Island and Bonita Bay, both of which yielded undecorated,
mostly utilitarian shell tools, but lacked ceramics. In compari-
son, the small samples from the Joseph Reed Shell Ring did
not produce shell tools. But the handful of undecorated
ceramics, bone pin fragments, and lithic flakes, like most other
Late Archaic shell rings, do not, at first view, indicate uses
beyond utilitarian needs
The four excavation units placed at the Joseph Reed Shell



Ring established that the ring was
built during the Late Archaic by
peoples who manufactured or
received chalky and sand-tem-
Spered plain pottery, with, per-
0 cm 1 haps, chalky wares preceding the
introduction of sand-tempered
wares. The initial stages of the
shell ring, have not yet yielded
evidence of pottery (see Russo
and Heide 2000), and, thus, it
remains unclear if ceramic peo-
ples built the first stages of the
ring. Too, it remains unknown if
the central open area of the ring
remains intact beneath storm de-
posited sands or has been swept
: away by storm waves and tides.
And it is unknown if the ring ever
C m formed a completed circle prior to
re line () erosion, as has been suggested by
oral history (Fryman et al. 1980).
The ring as it stands today is an
asymmetrical half circle, evi-
dently eroding on its eastern
edges from wave and storm action
with widely varying amounts of
shell in terms of thickness and
height distributed along its re-
maining circumference (Figure
At other ring sites evidence of
S subsistence/feasting in the form of
S hearths, roasting pits, storage
pits, and midden deposits have
Figure 5. Bone pin been found under and on the inte-
fragments from Unit 2. rior edge of the ring, indicating
use of the area prior to shell depo-
sition (Russo and Saunders 1999;
Trinkley 1980, 1985, 1997). At Joseph Reed, excavation units
were of inadequate depth and size to make definitive determi-
nations of site use prior to shell mounding for ring construc-
tion. Only in Unit 1, did lower levels suggest non-shell
mounding activities prior to ring construction, i.e., thin
deposits of shell midden indicative of activity floors, pits, and
charcoal features (Features 1-5) that alternated with deposits
of clean, white sand. The use of white sands in Florida
Archaic sites has been linked to ritual contexts (Aten 1999;
Russo 1991, 1994). It is possible that the alternating white
sand deposits between Features 1-5 were ritual deposits
prefatory to the massive mounding of shell that makes up most
of the shell ring above these features (Figure 3). However, no
similar evidence of ritual activity was apparent in the lowest
levels of Units 2 and 4. Although white to lightly colored
sands (the color possibly due to pedogenesis) were identified
in the lowest levels in both units, whether they represent
natural or cultural deposits is unclear due to the small (post-

hole) size of the excavations at these levels.
Save for slight differences in color and amounts of soil in
the main shell deposits which make up the bulk of the ring, the
shell deposits appear largely undifferentiated and suggestive
of large piles of refuse dumped in short periods of time, a
characteristic of public feasting (Hayden 1996; VanDerwarker
1999). That is, rather than accretion of small scale domestic
and/or ritual activities, the larger episodes of mounding of
shell are indicative of larger scale feasting.
Because vertebrate and other shellfish remains are found
among the oyster dominated zones and features, it is not likely
that the Joseph Reed site served only as an oyster feasting
arena or as an oyster processing station. A number of subsis-
tence/feasting activities can be inferred from the kinds and
manner of distribution of the faunal remains. The most
abundant numbers of faunal specimens come from oysters and
small fish. Even those species offish that can obtain relatively
large size such as gar, bowfin, grouper, redfish, and requiem
sharks were of small sizes in the Feature 3 assemblage.
Mullet, herring, grunts, and croaker are smaller sized school-
ing fish. Along with sea catfish, they are among the most
productive of inshore, estuarine fish. We can assume that
factors of plenty, convenience, expedience, and reliability of
capture were primary reasons behind their selection as food
items. Although species of larger sizes such as deer and sea
turtle were utilized at Joseph Reed, they are uncommon at the
site and were certainly not relied upon to feed the masses their
daily rations. These species are only seasonally present or are
otherwise rare on small barrier islands such as Jupiter Island
on which the Joseph Reed Shell Ring lies.
Somewhat surprising is the presence of freshwater species
of turtle, including mud turtles, cooters, and soft-shells, and
fish such as bowfin and gar. Today there is no natural
freshwater habitat that would support these animals on Jupiter
Island in any significant numbers. Their presence at the site
suggests either some significant environmental change
resulting in the removal of former, nearby freshwater habitats
(not altogether unlikely given sea rise over the last 4,000
years, the perpetual process of opening and closing of inlets
due to storm activity and longshore drift, and modern environ-
mental disturbance, e.g., the adjacent construction of the
Intracoastal waterway), or that the animals were brought to the
site from some mainland freshwater source. In freshwater
streams and ponds, the species identified at Joseph Reed are
quite common and easily captured, particularly during low
water levels brought upon by drought when turtles, bowfin and
gar are among the last faunal resources to survive.
In summary, while the large mounded piles of shell in the
ring primarily consist of oyster, the presence of other species
indicates that oysters were not the only faunal species provid-
ing subsistence at the site. Easily captured and common
freshwater and saltwater species of fish and turtle were
utilized. However, for every fish or turtle eaten, thousands of
oysters were consumed. The massive intake of oysters left
behind a far greater residuum than the remains of all other
species combined. It is most likely, and is supported by the
limited evidence from the three midden units, that Joseph Reed


2002 VOL. 55(2)


south wall west wall
oyster in 10 YR 413

was built in a manner similar to that evidenced at the more
intensively investigated Rollins Shell Ring. Mounded piles of
shell coalesced through successive feasting episodes in which
oysters contributed the greatest amount of discard.
The size and nature of feasts varied at the site. Any large
single pile of oyster at Joseph Reed could have provided a
meal's worth of subsistence for hundreds of people, while
within these large piles occasional and concentrated remains
offish, turtle, deer, and other shellfish indicate smaller feasts
or quotidian household consumption occurred. Feature 3
reflects subsistence sufficient only for a handful of people. In
the smaller scale feature we find evidence for a greater
diversity of species and inclusion of freshwater species which
were likely exotic to the site and took more energy to recover
than locally available shellfish. However, regardless of the
size of individual deposits of faunal remains, oyster was the
primary subsistence item in terms of frequency of use, in
virtually all midden contexts.
It is important to note, however, that oyster was not only a
food item and its residual shell, an incidental discard.
Intentional mounding of oyster shell provided the foundation
for the ring and organizing framework for ceremonies at the
site. The piling of shell was not equally distributed around the
circumference of the ring. The southeastern corner of the
remaining ring structure, for example, contains far more shell,
as measured by height, than western portion of the ring
(Figure 1). We suggest that this differential mounding was
intentional as was the circular pattern in which the shell was
placed. These points are critical to understanding the function
and appearance of pottery at the mound, and are addressed

Comparing Joseph Reed to Other Shell Rings

Were the people who built the Joseph Reed Shell Ring
related to any of the other shell ring producing cultures in the
Southeast? To date, the Southeast Late Archaic coastal
landscape manifests upwards of 60 shell rings and an un-

counted number of what seem to be distinctive shell ring-
producing cultures distinguished by their unique shapes,
artifact assemblages, and dates of occupation (Figures 2, 9,
and 10).

South Carolina

Along the central South Carolina coast, Thom's Creek
sand-tempered pottery producers constructed a number of shell
rings between 4200 to 3200 B.P. (Sassaman 1993; Trinkley
1985; Figure 10). Rings vary widely in size from 30 to over
100 meters in diameter (Saunders 2001) and are generally
circular to semi-circular. While Thom's Creek peoples were
contemporaneous with Joseph Reed occupations and did make
sand-tempered pottery, they are among the most distant shell
rings from South Florida. In addition, the Thom's Creek
pottery is often poorly fired and decorated with punctations,
incisions, and other designs (Trinkley 1976), unlike the plain
sand-tempered wares from Joseph Reed. Ceramics are often
very abundant and variably include fiber-tempered types and
clay balls; worked bone objects are common; while chipped
lithic tools and exotics are rare.


Near the Savannah River and south into coastal Georgia,
the St. Simons culture built circular to semi-circular shell
rings up to 90 meters in diameter from 4300 B.P. to at least
3700 B.P., somewhat earlier than Joseph Reed although dated
sites are rare and may not cover the full range (Figure 10).
The ceramic assemblages differ from Joseph Reed in that they
are often abundant, consist of fiber-tempered wares, and often
exhibit designs. Other common artifacts often include bone
pins, while less frequently baked clay, ground stone, shell
tools, and chipped lithics are found (Marrinan 1975; Waring
and Larson 1968).


Figure 6. Excavation Unit 4 wall profiles.




Figure 7. East and South Florida culture regions (St. Johns after
Milanich 1994, Indian River after Rouse 1951, East Okeechobee
after Carr and Beriault 1984, South Florida after Widmer 1988).

Northeast Florida

Some 270 miles north of Joseph Reed at the Oxeye site, a
non-pottery producing culture whose members cooked with
clay balls, built a circular shell ring over 150 m in diameter at
the mouth of the St. Johns River around 4500 B.P. (Russo and
Saunders 1999; Figure 10). Virtually no artifacts have been
recovered other than a few fragments of baked clay and a few
lithic flakes. The early date precludes a direct connection to
Joseph Reed, while the absence of ceramics, presence of baked
clay objects, and paucity of artifacts precludes affirming any
derivative connections between their material cultures.
Nearby, a fiber-tempered ceramic producing group, the
Orange culture, built a large ring at the Rollins site around
3700 to 3500 B.P. (Russo 1992; Russo and Saunders 1999;


>1i JV
I I // ,
St,/ J/ ,n'

The Florida panhandle contains at least two
horseshoe-shaped shell middens, the Elliott's Point period
Buck Bayou site and Late Archaic Meig's Pasture site measur-
ing 125m and ca. 100 m respectively (Curren 1987; Thomas
and Campbell 1991). These structures, however, seem
distinctively different in shape Meig's Pasture being a series
of shell piles and pit features in a circular arrangement and
lacking ceramics, while Buck Bayou is a mounded midden.
Meig's Pasture seems the older site at around 3900 B.P.
(Figure 10), but both are marked by a lack of ceramic pottery
(except near the surface at Buck Bayou [Thomas and Campbell
1991:116]) and the presence of baked clay objects suggesting
that their cooking styles were distinct from those at Joseph
Reed which lacks baked clay. The sites also have lithic tools,
both chipped stone and ground stone including steatite, and
other exotics that distinguish them from Joseph Reed. How



Russo et al. 1993; Saunders 1999). Fiber-tempered
pottery manufacturers also constructed the Guana River
shell ring, some 30 miles south of Rollins. That site,
which is currently under investigation by the authors
and other members of the Northeast Florida Anthropo-
logical Society, has yielded two conventional radiocar-
bon dates from oyster of 3860 +/-60 and 3600 +/-50 B.P.
(Beta 154816 and Beta 154817, respectively). The
Rollins and Guana shell rings are roughly circular and
are large, 240m and 160 m in greatest diameter respec-
tively (Figure 2). Both have large openings on their
southeast sides. Pottery from undisturbed contexts is
solely fiber-tempered and relatively abundant at both
sites, but abundances vary throughout the rings. Bone
pins are fairly common, but lithics and other artifacts

Southwest Florida

On the southwest Florida coast one or possibly two
distinct and unnamed cultures produced shell rings at
Horr's Island and Bonita Bay between 4400 and 4100
B.P. (Figure 10). Although these rings are geographi-
cally the closest to Joseph Reed (Figure 9), they are of a
period up to a thousand years earlier than Joseph Reed
(Dickel 1992; Houck 1996; Russo 1991, 1994). As is
the case at Joseph Reed, the sites have yielded sandstone
and/or limestone artifacts and bone pins. But an ab-
sence of pottery and the presence of shell tools at the
sites serve to distinguish them from Joseph Reed.
Although samples are small, to date Joseph Reed has
failed to yield shell tools and does not seem to contain
the abundance of shell tools found at Horr's Island.
Also, Horr's Island and Bonita Bay shell rings' associa-
tions with sand/shell ceremonial mounds and their
elongated U-shapes (150 m and 240 m in length respec-
tively) distinguish them from the semi-circular (and
presumably, formerly circular) Joseph Reed (Figure 2).

Northwest Florida

2002 VOL. 55(2)





Figure 8. Rim and base sherds from 8MT13.

common these items are is unclear (cf. Curren 1987:74;
Thomas and Campbell 1991:108, 112). The same may be said
of bone pins and shell beads and tools which are from indus-
tries termed "moderately active" at Elliott's Point sites in the
region, but whose abundance at Buck Bayou is not stated in
published accounts (Thomas and Campbell 1991:108).


The Late Archaic Cedarland and the Poverty Point period
Claiborne shell rings of coastal Mississippi, dating between
3200 to 3100 B.P., but perhaps as early as 4000 B.P. (these ages
are uncorrected and based on charcoal, cf. Bruseth 1991;
Gagliano and Webb 1970), may overlap in age with the Joseph
Reed Shell Ring. Before they were destroyed, both sites were
rather large, measuring between 165 and 250 meters in outside
diameter, respectively, and were semi-circular with openings
to the west. At least one author, however, sees the Cedarland
site as less a distinct shell ring with a sterile central plaza,
than a shell/earth midden with extensive deposits in the
interior and adjoining the exterior of a ring-like embankment
(Bruseth 1991:9). Significantly, Cedarland did not contain
pottery. Unlike Joseph Reed, both sites were remarkable for
their abundances of artifacts including exotic lithics and other
trade items. While Cedarland was comprised of oyster and
earth, Claiborne contained much more Rangia clam.

Joseph Reed: A Separate Shell Ring Culture

Archaeological cultures are defined by recurring assem-
blages of traits such as artifacts, burial methods, architecture,
subsistence patterns that serve to distinguish one group of sites
from others. While trait comparisons alone do not preclude
the possibility social relations between materially dissimilar
cultures (e.g., Sassaman 1993), they do serve as the basis for


0 2 4

distinguishing the level of material relatedness among archae-
ological cultures and among sites within the same culture.
With this in mind, and as the overview above has demon-
strated, we can identify at least seven and up to twelve distinct
Late Archaic cultural traditions, which have arisen around the
construction of shell rings in the Southeast during the period
4500-3000 B.P. These may include separate, but, perhaps,
related traditions at closely spaced sites such as Claiborne and
Cedarland, and Buck Bayou and Meig's Pasture; or more
widely geographically and temporally spaced traditions as
Horr's Island and the South Carolina rings. Undoubtedly,
even more distinct material traditions will be identified as
details on the numerous shell rings in Georgia and South
Carolina are obtained.
The Joseph Reed peoples participated in many of the Late
Archaic coastal traditions of the Southeast. These included the
massive consumption of and dependence on shellfish and fish,
the deposition of shell refuse in the shape of rings, the import-
ing and use of chipped lithic tools, the early use of pottery, and
the manufacture and use of bone pins. They share with many
other Late Archaic shell ring sites an absence or paucity of
exotic objects, easily definable prestige items, and burials.
Distinct from Joseph Reed are Bonita Bay, Horr's Island, and
Oxeye, which predate Joseph Reed by hundreds of years and
lack pottery. The shape of the rings and presence of mounds
also distinguish the southwest Florida sites. Also distinct from
Joseph Reed are the closest pottery yielding rings, Rollins and
Guana, and, in fact, most ceramic-containing Late Archaic
rings, which were built by people who manufactured fiber-
tempered wares. South Carolina rings were made by peoples
who produced sand-tempered pottery, but these wares were
decorated, often thicker, and more poorly fired (Trinkley
As such, we suggest that the Joseph Reed site was yet
another in the catalogue of distinct shell ring cultures that
dotted the Late Archaic landscape. The material culture is
characterized by the use of thin and thick walled, hard, sand-
tempered pottery; the use of spiculate wares; bone pins;
chipped lithics brought in from exotic regions; subsistence
dependent on shellfish and fisheries resources; and large scale
feasting and small scale consumption of these resources.
Other than the use of a large shell ring for ceremonies,
however, the regional settlement pattern is a mystery. No
contemporary sites are known from the region.

Early Non-Fiber-Tempered Pottery:
Joseph Reed and Florida'

Because the Joseph Reed pottery is unique among shell
rings, it suggests a totally distinct tradition. However, there
are some indications that extra-regional interactions did occur
in the ceramic realms. Although ceramic samples are very
small, they do so far suggest that flat bottom, steep sided
vessels are present, and these forms are typical of contempora-
neous fiber-tempered pottery used to the north. And, although
the ceramic pastes types are unusual, they are not unknown in
contemporary contexts outside the region of East Okeechobee.




Figure 9. Selected Archaic shell rings in the Southeastern U.S.

Archaeologists typically link the introduction of spiculate
pottery in North America to the St. Johns I period peoples of
the St. Johns region of East-central Florida between 2500 and
2000 B.P. While the heartland of that region lies 200 miles
north of Joseph Reed (Figure 7), peoples of the Indian River
Region, which abuts Joseph Reed, are also thought to have
begun using this pottery at about the same time (Milanich
1994; Rouse 1951). However, in East Okeechobee, the region
in which Joseph Reed lies, St. Johns spiculate wares have been
identified as indigenous only at the far more recent time of
1200 B.P. (Pepe and Jester 1995:20; Figure 11), while else-
where in South Florida they are usually considered to be trade
wares (Carr and Beriault 1984:6). In short, at 3300 B.P.,
spiculate pottery producing cultures are not known in the
Southeast U. S., and specifically, they are unknown for the East
Okeechobee region in which Joseph Reed lies. Fiber-tempered
variants are the only pottery wares widely accepted to have
been in use in Florida at this time. However, even fiber-
tempered pottery is largely unknown in most of South Florida
until 2500 B.P., being found only at a few marginal sites, in
small amounts, or as isolated extra-regional trade (Carr and
Beriault 1984; McGoun 1993:66; Pepe and Jester 1995:16;
Widmer 1988:72). In general, although a variety of pottery
types have been found in pre-2500 B.P. contexts in South
Florida, pottery of any type at 3300 B.P. is so rare or absent in
South Florida, archaeologists have had difficulty explaining its
occasional presence as anything other than limited extra-
regional exchange.
While the presence of spiculate wares in such early South
Florida contexts is puzzling, the sand-tempered wares from
Joseph Reed at such early dates are equally problematic. In
most of South Florida sand-tempered wares were not common
until after 2500 B.P. They become more widespread through
time, but at 3300 B.P., sand-tempered wares are not thought to
have been produced in South Florida (Carr and Beriault 1984;



McGoun 1993; Milanich 1994:301; Pepe and Jester 1995),
or, for that matter anywhere in the Southeast U.S. except
South Carolina. Initial development of sand-tempered
pottery in South Florida is traditionally placed around 2800-
2500 B.P. Sand-tempered wares are seen as South Florida's
autochthonous pottery, variants of which become the
primary component of all South Florida cultural pottery
assemblages that follow.
With this in mind, two aspects of the Joseph Reed
pottery run counter to existing views on ceramics in Florida.
One, the ceramics at Joseph Reed consist of both sand-
tempered and chalky wares at a time when most archaeolog-
ical chronologies indicate these wares are unknown else-
where in Florida. Two, chalky wares seem to precede or at
least co-exist with the production of sand-tempered wares
prior to 2800 B.P. in possible contradiction to the assumed
temporal priority of sand-tempered wares in the region. To
help resolve these apparent anomalies, we need to look at
the developmental process and uses of ceramic chronolo-
gies. They represent syntheses which, by necessity, over-
look exceptions to temporal trends to arrive at generalized
patterns of distribution through time. If we look at some of
the rarer ceramic types excluded from most generalized
Florida ceramic chronologies, then early sandy and chalky
wares at Joseph Reed do not, perhaps, appear as exceptional as
they do at first glance.
In Florida, non-fiber-tempered pottery produced during the
Late Archaic before 3000 B.P. is evidenced at a number of
sites. At the J-5 site in the panhandle, Bullen (1958) identified
St. Johns associated with Orange wares in a context dated to
3150 B.P. At the Caxambas site on Marco Island along the
southwest Gulf coast three charcoal samples from a shell
midden yielded conventional ages of 3155, 3375, and 3400
B.P. (Buckley and Willis 1972; Table 1). Associated with the
dates were sand-tempered plain and fiber-tempered wares.
Twenty miles north at Mulberry Midden, Lee et al. (1993)
dated two shell samples from the sand-tempered plain bearing
stratum which yielded conventional dates of 3390 and 3430
B.P. (Table 1). At the Palmer/Hill Cottage site Bullen and
Bullen (1976) described two levels in the large shell midden
as containing Orange, St. Johns, and sand-tempered wares.
Radiocarbon assays on shell from these levels yielded conven-
tional dates of 3625 and 3750 B.P. (Table 1). At the Cato site
70 miles north of Joseph Reed, Bullen et al. (1968) excavated
a St. Johns ceramic bearing shell midden with a date of 3195
B.P., a date within the range of dates from Joseph Reed.
Some of these dates can be easily dismissed. For example,
the direct association of the radiocarbon dated Cato material
with St. Johns pottery has been called into question (Heide
2000). On the other hand, early radiocarbon dates have been
rejected as associated with pottery only after much delibera-
tion. For instance, in a well reasoned article, Lee et al. (1998)
argued that at Heineken Hammock in Southwest Florida, three
dates (4000-4500 B.P.) on shell from the same levels as sand-
tempered wares did not date the pottery from the same levels.
The dates were dismissed, in part, because the thin site seemed
subject to causing pottery to migrate to lower levels, but also,

2002 VOL. 55(2)















Figure 10. Conventional radiocarbon dates of Southeastern U.S. Archaic shell ring and ring-like sites. Center point is the
average of all dates (number in parenthesis) from the ring. Vertical bars represent the range of the conventional dates.

in part, because the dates seemed too early (Lee et al.
1998:238). A date of 2500 B.P. seemed more reasonable
because and certainly fit the locally accepted chronology.
A number of the cited early pottery dates come from
"mixed" ceramic components. These have been linked to
Bullen's (1959) Transitional period, whose earliest beginnings
lie between 3000 to 2500 B.P. However, all of the radiocarbon
ages actually predate this period. Ultimately, Bullen came to
recognize that at least three "new" (i.e., non-fiber-tempered)
ceramic series existed in Florida before 3000 B.P., St. Johns
wares, Pasco or Perico limestone tempered wares, and
Norwood semi-fiber-tempered wares (i.e., tempered with fiber
and sand) (Bullen 1971:64). These early ceramic traditions,
however, have never been widely accepted for South Florida
(cf. Carr and Beriault 1984; Griffin 1974; Milanich and
Fairbanks 1980), and only one attempt to enter all these into
a formal chronology for South Florida has been presented
(Widmer 19887). While not everyone agrees with Widmer's
chronology (e.g., Milanich 1994; Lee et al. 1993:50), with
some specifying the contextual problems of the data upon
which it is built (Griffin 1988:132; Heide 2000; McGoun
1993:56, 76; Russo 1991), the significance of Widmer's

attempt to place South Florida's earliest dated pottery types
into a formal chronology is that it does deal with unusual
pottery occurrences. Some of these appear to have been
derived from sound contexts (e.g., Lee et al. 1993) that
accepted chronologies do not otherwise take into account.
Our point is that the ceramics from Joseph Reed may not
be as out of sequence as they first appear. Although unilinear
assumptions normally place fiber-tempered pottery preceding
non-fiber-tempered wares, in many areas of Florida various
ceramics co-existed with fiber-tempered pottery production.
This occurred not only during the so-called Transitional period
circa 3000-2500 B.P., but earlier. What is unusual about the
Joseph Reed site, perhaps as much as the earliness of the non-
fiber-tempered ceramics, is the absence of fiber-tempered
wares associated with them.

Ceramics and the East Okeechobee Area


As a distinct culture area, East Okeechobee was first
described by Carr and Beriault (1984; Figure 7). They


(1'~ (2~ 4'

(5) (6) (1) (6) (2) (2) (2) (2) (3) (1) (3) (5) (2) (3) (2)

\ .. ..



(4) ('

i i ii


recognized that it was "the least known region in southern
Florida" and, at the time, that it had no intra-regional radio-
carbon dates to even suggest periods of occupation and
ceramic production. Recently, however, radiocarbon dates
have been obtained from coastal sites in the region associated
with fiber-tempered pottery at Mt. Elizabeth (8MT30) circa
4000 B.P. just north of Joseph Reed (Janus 1998); and semi-
fiber-tempered pottery at the Scheurich Midden site
(8PB9261) circa 3800 B.P. just south of Joseph Reed (Wheeler
et al. 1997; Table 1). Aware of the presence of fiber-tempered
pottery on the coast, but its absence in the interior of South
Florida, Pepe and Jester (1995) have suggested that two
separate cultures occupied the East Okeechobee region around
4000 B.P. One, which we will call Coastal Archaic, was
located along the coast and used fiber-tempered pottery. Pepe
and Jester (1995:17) see this as the extreme southern extension
of Orange people migrating from the St. Johns region, but they
could be local groups trading with the Orange people. The
other, they call the Glades Archaic. It was located in the
interior Everglades, including the area between Lake
Okeechobee and the Atlantic Coastal Ridge in the East
Okeechobee region. People in this area at the time did not
produce ceramics.
Taking the coastal culture area concept as well as a late
prehistoric ceramic chronology already developed for the
region (Pepe and Jester 1995; Kennedy et al. 1993), and
adding the radiocarbon dates from Joseph Reed, Mt. Elizabeth
and Scheurich Midden, a tentative ceramic chronology for the
coastal section of East Okeechobee can be proposed (Figure
11). At the enormous shell complex at Mt. Elizabeth, fiber-
tempered ceramics associated with shell from an adjacent unit
yielded the earliest conventional date for ceramics in the
region at around 4000 B.P. (Janus 1998). Nearby, however,
another radiocarbon assay which was not associated with
ceramics came in at nearly an identical age. This suggests that
4000 B.P. may be a boundary between ceramic cultures and
fiber-tempered ceramic producing cultures either existing or
trading into the region.
By around 3800 B.P. fiber-tempered or semi-fiber-tempered
ceramics are found at the Scheurich Midden (Wheeler et al.
1997:27; Skye Wheeler, personal communication 2000; Table
1). So far, no fiber-tempered sites post-dating 3800 B.P. have
yet been identified in East Okeechobee. Was the area aban-
doned by Orange pottery producers or did interaction between
local and extralocal Orange groups stop? Did ceramic Glades
Archaic peoples move in (cf. Pepe and Jester 1995)? Our
samples are too small to answer these questions.
Sometime between 3500 and 3300 B.P. (maximum cal.
range, 3500-3000 B.P.; Table 1) the first chalky wares appear
at Joseph Reed (Unit 2). They are also found in Feature 3
(Unit 1), which dates to 3280 B.P. and above Feature 2, which
dates to 2850 B.P. The range, therefore, for early chalky wares
at Joseph Reed, and tentatively for the region, is somewhere
between 3450 and 2850 B.P. or maximum cal. range, 3500-
2700 B.P. (Table 1). This date is as much as 2,200 years
earlier than the suggested entry of spiculate wares in the
region (Pepe and Jester 1995) and as much as 900 years earlier

than the widely accepted entry of spiculate wares into the St.
Johns and Indian River regions to the north.
According to Pepe and Jester (1995:19) sand-tempered
pottery made its first appearance in the region around 2700
B.P., although no intra-regional dates have yet been obtained
to confirm these ages (cf. Pepe 1999 identified 2500 B.P. as the
initial introduction). At Joseph Reed, sand-tempered wares
are found above Feature 2 (Unit 2), which dates to 2850 B.P.
This is only slightly older than suggested by the Pepe and
Jester chronology. But sand-tempered pottery is also found
below the date of 3280 from Unit 4 which sets their appear-
ance back nearly 600 years. The tentative introduction for
sand-tempered plain pottery in the region, then, is placed at
3280 B.P. while the range of the wares from Joseph Reed is
from 3300-2800 B.P. or maximum cal. range, 3400-2800 B.P.
(Table 1).

Ceramics and the Joseph Reed Shell Ring

Who, then, were the people who built Joseph Reed Shell
Ring? The Joseph Reed folks did interact with other Archaic
peoples. A single lithic flake from central or northwestern
Florida; fiber-tempered vessel forms; two distinct types of
pottery, rare for the time, but occasionally found elsewhere in
the state contemporaneously; and the use of a common
architectural form, the shell ring suggests that the society
communicated on some level with others who traded lithics,
made pottery, and constructed shell rings. Conversely, the
Joseph Reed people manufactured both chalky and sand-
tempered pottery while their nearest neighbors to the south and
west, the Glades Archaic, may not have manufactured pottery
at all, and those to the north made fiber-tempered wares. The
absence of Orange wares at Joseph Reed suggests limited
interaction with the Orange cultures, or that our samples were
too small or were not placed in areas containing fiber-tem-
pered pottery. In either case, it can be definitively stated, the
Orange pottery was not used commonly at the site, if at all,
provoking the question, why?
The presence of chalky wares at Joseph Reed supports
Widmer's (1988) recognition of St. Johns pottery in early
contexts in southwest Florida (Figure 11), while the presence
of early sand-tempered wares coincide with times in which
pottery with similar pastes are found on Gulf coast sites
(Buckley and Willis 1972; Bullen and Bullen 1976; Heide
2000; Lee et al. 1993). These early ceramic sites suggest some
connection of Joseph Reed to Southwest Florida. The wide
dispersal and general rarity of the early pottery sites, unfortu-
nately, prevents easy assessments of the direction and nature
of the interactions. Unlike the situation with contemporary
fiber-tempered pottery, there seems to be no center of produc-
tion for chalky and sand-tempered wares before 3000 years
ago. So while fiber-tempered pottery finds in South Florida
are often attributed to trade from the intensely productive
fiber-tempered pottery producing St. Johns region, there seems
to be no central area to attribute possible trade of chalky or
sand-tempered wares into the region. Indeed, one might argue
that chalky and sand-tempered wares, albeit limited, seem

2002 VOL. 55(2)



B.P. South Florida Southwest coastal East Indian River St. Johns A.D.
Florida Okeechobee

X Sand-tempered





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\\ \ \'\ \


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. ,', \ \X v

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] Limestone-tempered

_I Fiber-tempered

Figure 11. Selected chronologies for dominant ceramics in south and East Florida compared to
a provisional chronology for Coastal East Okeechobee (based on Joseph Reed dates; Janus 1998; Pepe and Jester 1995; and
Beta 141466). Chronologies adapted from Widmer (1988)7 for Southwest Florida, Carr and Beriault (1984) for South Florida,
and Milanich (1994) for the Indian River and St. Johns regions.

more abundant at Joseph Reed than at most contemporary sites
in southwest Florida.
This leads to the conclusion that people at Joseph Reed
made or received pottery for use at the site. Why the unique

pottery assemblage is found solely at the site and not in the
surrounding region may be attributed to site function. If the
shell ring served as a ceremonial feasting center, then the early
pottery may have been manufactured and used initially for



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] Spiculate

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5000I -







ceremonial use. Hayden (1995a) suggests that early regional
use of pottery arose in settings of incipient socio-cultural
inequalities at competitive feasts where it was used as a
prestige item to affirm exchange relationships or advertise
wealth and success. Under such conditions, pottery may serve
as much for display as for subsistence, and may not commonly
be found at households outside of ceremonial or ritual con-
texts. Whatever the cause of pottery development, we do know
that so far no sites in the immediate region have been found to
be contemporary with Joseph Reed. This may be due in part
to the fact that no radiocarbon dates have been run on sites or
site components which lack ceramics, a deficiency that begs

Social Organization at Joseph Reed

We have suggested elsewhere that differential access to
food, pottery, and other items of prestige is evident at ring sites
(Russo n.d.; Russo and Heide n.d.). In hunter/gatherer
societies food is often the primary medium of status and
prestige, particularly in the absence of other valued material
objects (Woodburn 1981). At shell rings, including Joseph
Reed, the ability of certain members of society to accumulate
more food than others is reflected in differences in height of
shell deposits within the ring (Figure 1). Some portions of the
ring exceed 2 meters in height, while others lie on or below
current sea level. Units 1 and 2 were placed in portions of the
ring containing higher accumulations of shell than Unit 4.
Although samples were small, these units also yielded more
ceramics and variety of artifacts per volume of shell than
recovered from Unit 4. The correlation of large amounts of
food remains with artifacts suggests that economic and social
inequalities among ring members existed at Joseph Reed.
We cannot say under what form the social asymmetry
evident at Joseph Reed was manifest. Certainly more investi-
gations are needed before conclusive interpretation of the
functions and social and political organization of the occu-
pants of the site can be ascertained. However, the artifacts
recovered so far do not indicate a politically complex chief-
dom. Exotic or prestige trade at the site seems to have been
limited, suggesting that the ring was not a place led by
politically powerful, hereditary chiefs who accumulated great
numbers of elaborated objects or exotic items as symbols of
their power. While such items are commonly found among
later Woodland, and, in particular, Mississippian chiefdoms in
the Southeast, they do not characterize the remains from
Joseph Reed. Prestige burials, prestige goods, exotic trade
items indicative of complex political connections, regional
settlement hierarchy, elevated and separate house mounds,
temple mounds and other markers of high status we typically
associate with later prehistoric groups are not evident at
Joseph Reed. Supporting this interpretation is the absence of
subordinate chiefdoms (other ring sites?) or settlements which
might articulate with the large Joseph Reed site and suggest a
hierarchy among sites such as characteristic of politically
complex regional settlement.
Instead, we suggest that the social organization at the site

was certainly less stratified than politically complex hereditary
chiefdoms, but more complex than the simplest egalitarian
societies. Elsewhere, the forms of social organizations found
in this range have been termed transegalitarian8 and we use
that term here (Hayden 1995b, 1996). Whether the society
was a simple chiefdom, big man society, sequential hierarchy,
or some other organizational form is indeterminable given the
limited data. We can say, however, that social inequality did
exist at the site and that inequality provides a key to under-
standing the development of pottery utilization at the site.
The shell ring community was organized on a level
sufficient to bring in and feed numbers of people larger than
those identified at any other contemporary, single site in South
Florida. The size and shape of the ring site combined with
large scale feasting evidence suggests large populations
congregated at the site for ceremonies. Such ceremonial
elaboration may reflect increases in stress brought about by
population or organizational growth in which patterned
behavior through the imposition of ritual serves as a control-
ling mechanism to keep the society together (Johnson 1982;
Russo 1991). Such organization necessarily requires leader-
ship to obtain and distribute food resources, quell disputes,
orchestrate ceremonies, and otherwise run the place. These
leadership roles may be ascribed or achieved, permanent or
temporary, and their character likely differed among shell ring
sites, which vary greatly in size and organiza-
tional/architectural complexity. Due to the limited symbols of
status recovered at Joseph Reed (shell and mundane artifacts),
the highest status leadership roles were most likely achieved.
Leadership and other high status positions had to be worked
for. Pottery, so often seen solely as an adaptational/functional
innovation, within this social milieu served as a rare and novel
material item used to display and reify status and prestige
(Russo and Heide n.d.).


Joseph Reed site may be seen as a place where related
corporate groups met for the exchange of mates, marriage, gift
giving, the redistribution of foodstuffs, and/or other activities
associated with ritual, ceremony, and feasting (e.g., Dietler
and Hayden 2001; Weissner and Schiefenhovel 1996). The
size of the site could accommodate hundreds, if not thousands
of people. The site may have maintained a permanent popula-
tion with expansion occurring during times of feast and
ceremony. Large piles of oyster shell suggest large scale
feasting, while smaller deposits suggest smaller scale feasts or
daily maintenance activities. Within this expanded population
motivated individuals gained and signified their status through
the distribution and display of food (e.g., large amounts of
oyster) and pottery. The unusual shape of the site and the
early pottery set the Joseph Reed Shell Ring apart from all
other sites in the region. However, against the broader
backdrop of shell ring construction and indigenous pottery
development, these phenomena are understandable as a local
expression of a common cultural trajectory.


2002 VOL. 55(2)



'In order to show the general size and shape of the ring as we
observed it in the field, as well as to show the estimated position of
our test units, Kennedy's 1966 English measure topographic map was
digitized into AutoCAD using a metric scale, converted into X,Y,Z
coordinates and a contour map was created using the program Surfer.
Problem areas lacking elevation data on Kennedy's map (e.g., the
western interior of the ring, and the Atlantic Ocean) were given
estimated elevation values. The locations of our excavation units
were superimposed on this map based with their locations approxi-
mated. With these caveats in mind, the resulting map (Figure 1)
should not be seen as an accurate depiction of the ring as it stands
today, but rather as the closest approximation currently available.
2All radiocarbon dates are conventional ages unless otherwise noted.
Many dates based on assays of shell cited herein were not originally
published as conventional dates and have been corrected for "C
fractionation in this paper through the Calib 4.3 program (Stuiver and
Reimer 1993). This usually results in the addition of some 400 years
to their uncorrected age (cf Stuiver and Polach 1977:358). Archaeol-
ogists lacking this program have often added 400 years to an
uncorrected date to obtain a conventional age (e.g., Marquardt
1992:12;Russo 1991:424, 1992:110, 1996:183; Sassaman 1998:115).

3For South Florida, archaeologists recognize that there are non-
artifact bearing strata under ceramic components. Unfortunately,
radiocarbon tests on these contexts are rarely undertaken. We
suspect the full record of early ceramics remains largely hidden. Most
archaeology undertaken in the region has been conducted under
cultural resource management projects, the primary goals of which
are to meet minimum Section 106 requirements. The establishment
and refinement of new chronologies is simply not required or stressed
by researchers or reviewers. As such, the temporal placement of
plain chalky and sand-tempered ceramics is usually undertaken by
slipping them into a standard chronology rather than by dating their
contexts or those beneath them. Without more radiocarbon dating,
archaeologists will not be able to answer many of the questions
associated with the emergence of ceramics in the region.
40ne reviewer of an earlier draft of this paper suggested that we
present evidence with which to persuade the reader that the storms
capable of depositing sand in the middle of the ring did not deposit
shell "up slope" and "in-shore," i.e., that the large piles of oyster
which make up the ring were not due to or disturbed by post-
depositional factors. While we do not doubt that the storms which
have buffeted the Joseph Reed Shell Ring have dramatically affected
its shape, maybe have even removed the entire eastern half of the ring
(Fryman et al. 1980), in the three units we excavated within the ring
itself (Units 1, 2, and 4), no evidence of the crushed shell/sand
matrix typical of shorelines and the interior plaza area was found. In
addition, features with Unit 1 indicated that archaeological deposits
are undisturbed by storm activity. And radiocarbon dates from the
shell seem stratigraphically secure. If reworking of shell by storms
has occurred, it awaits for future archaeologists to discover it.

5Carr et al. (1995) note that a human bone was recovered by Sears in
thel960s according to Sears and Hoffman (1965) and that a 1962
newspaper article stated that human bones were found on the beach
near the site after a storm caused severe erosion. This suggested to
Carr et al. (1965:54-55) that the site "seems to contain several
burials." With this in mind, one of our reviewers suggested that we
might consider these remains in our discussion of site function. We
did consider them prior to writing the article, but chose to exclude
them from discussion, due, in part, to space constraints, but more

significantly due to the fact that the number and context of the
remains is unclear. One letter dated February 11 (no year) on file at
Florida Atlantic University (FAU) to William Sears mentions a
package being mailed to FAU which contains "what I think may be
part of a human skull which I found on the Reed Wilderness Sea-
shore." The point is that the Reed Wilderness Seashore, extended far
beyond the immediate vicinity of 8MT13. Assuming that this is the
bone to which Carr et al. (1995) refer, its later placement as having
come from 8MT13 is problematic. Assuming that it did come from
the site, the context is unclear and its association with the shell ring
builders is unknown. Other shell rings that the authors have worked
on or are currently working on have yielded burials and/or isolated
human bones that were intrusive (Russo 1991), or human bones have
been found along eroding shores that were associated with an
adjacent site, not the shell ring (Newman 2002).
We agree that human remains should always be considered
when investigating and modeling shell ring functions. In general,
however, shell rings are renowned for their absence or paucity of
human remains. As such, we hesitate to suggest that 8MT13 may be
a burial site, although discovering that it was, would not necessarily
alter our main hypothesis that the ring served as a place of small and
large-scale feasting in ceremonial contexts. Shell middens serving as
places of both burial and disposition of shell remains are common
among Archaic shell consuming cultures of the New World (Gaspar
1998; Goggin 1952).

6All dates and date ranges in the following section are from the cited
references. Few of these references identify whether the dates,
particularly those used to base ceramic chronologies on, were
uncorrected, corrected (conventional), or calibrated dates.
The reader is advised that corrected radiocarbon ages from shell
and those from charcoal are not directly comparable. Most of the
dates upon which the local chronologies cited herein have been based
were probably derived from charcoal assays. Comparison of
radiocarbon dates from shell to these chronologies thus is problem-
atic, not only for this article, but for archaeologists in general. We do
not purport to have solved this problem. We have, however, provided
calibrated dates from Joseph Reed (Table 1) and selected other sites
mention in the text. When comparing charcoal and shell dates,
calibrated ranges are best used, although conventional ages may be
useful for illustrative purposes.
The intent of this section is to demonstrate that pottery from
Joseph Reed is, indeed, earlier than most other secure dates proposed
for the earliest Glades and other non-fiber-tempered pottery in the
region. To that end, we included in Table 1 a calibration of the most
commonly cited date for the earliest Glades pottery and beginning of
Glades I period (e.g., Carr and Beriault 1984:6; Sears 1982; Widmer
1974;1988:75). Widmer (1988:75) cites the date of 450 +/-105 B.C.
identified in Sears (1982:116) as uncorrected. Converting this to
2400 B.P. for calibration purposes, a calibrated intercept of 2357 B.P.
is obtained, an intercept considerably younger than other sand-
tempered ceramic associated dates in Table 1.

7Widmer's chronology for Southwest Florida is included here for
heuristic purposes (Figure 11). It is important to note that Widmer
(1988:71) dismissed the early date from 8CR112 of 4965 +/-100 as
"too early" for ceramics at the site. We cannot determine from
written reports (Widmer 1974; 1988) exactly what the association of
the charcoal was with the ceramics found at the site. We advise
readers to seek the original sources Widmer based his chronology on
to render their own assessments of the validity of the dates (cf.
Griffin 1988:132; Heide 2000).
Since the development of Widmer's chronology, two large shell
ring sites, Bonita Bay (Houck 1996) and Horr's Island (Russo 1991)
have yielded radiocarbon dated material that suggests that major sites




in the region before 4000 B.P. lacked ceramics. Widmer (1988:65,
71) knew of the ceramic aspect of Horr's Island at circa 4000 B.P.,
yet he proposed ceramic traditions extending to at least 4500 B.P. and
possibly further back as early as 5000 B.P. (cf. Widmer 1988:58, 69).
He mitigates this apparent contradiction by noting that some Late
Archaic sites in South Florida seem to lack ceramics (Widmer
1988:68) (but does not offer suggestions as to the cause of this
phenomenon). We note that despite his variable chronologies for pre-
4000 B.P. pottery in South Florida, the earliest date for pottery from
the region that he accepts as valid is only 3500 B.P. (Widmer
1988:72). Problems of consistency, however, should not detract from
Widmer's major contribution: recognition of the early arrival of
pottery in South Florida. The chronology presented in Figure 11, is
one variant of Widmer's attempts.

8Transegalitarian is a catch-all term. Clark and Blake (1994) used
the term to define "emergent chiefdoms," but we prefer the wider
application "those between chiefdoms and true egalitarian societies"
used by Hayden (2001:44). This use overcomes the teleological
assumptions in "trans" suggestive that the societies are somehow
"trans-"itioning or "trans-"forming into chiefdoms. Evolutionarily
this may happen, but we do not suggest that is the case at Joseph
Reed. We see transegalitarian formations as exhibiting evidence of
social ranking, status, or power on a permanent or situational basis
beyond those hypothesized for pure egalitarian societies, but
exhibiting limited or no evidence of institutionalized, hierarchical
ranking on a regional scale. Under this definition, simple chiefdoms
or big men societies may be included, but not politically stratified
chiefdoms with fixed social classes and hierarchical settlement
patterns (Hayden 1995b:28). We could have used other terms to
describe the social formation we envision at Joseph Reed. Perhaps
equally useable under select circumstances are such terms as
incipient, intermediate, or emergent complex societies or
heterarchical or sequential hierarchical formations (Arnold 1996;
Clark and Blake 1994; Ehrenreich et al. 1995; Hayden 1995b;
Johnson 1982).


In the summer of 1999, members of the Southeast Florida
Archaeological Society, students and faculty from Florida Atlantic
University, and staff from the National Park Service's Southeast
Archeological Center in cooperation with the Hobe Sound National
Wildlife Refuge conducted a three day investigation at the Refuge's
Joseph Reed Shell Ring, the results of which are reported in this
article. The authors wish to thank all these folks for their selfless
contributions, in particular Sonja Gray and Joanne Talley, who made
for us some valuable connections. In addition, we would like to
thank Ann Cordell, Vicki Rolland, and Rebecca Saunders for their
analyses and discussions with us of the ceramics from the site. Harry
Iceland helped greatly in the field and took on the added responsibil-
ity of identifying the lithics from the site. Jerry Kennedy, Skye
Wheeler, Ryan Wheeler, and Jim Pepe made available hard-to-get
reports that provided the basis for our chronological interpretations.
They are, of course, not to be held accountable for any heresies we've
produced, but are thanked for doing ground-breaking work in a poorly
known region. Their discoveries are widely cited and helped us
interpret our puzzles. Funding was on a shoestring, and we'd like to
thank Southeast Archeological Center, the Fish and Wildlife Service,
the Louisiana State University Museum ofNatural Science, and Lynn
Shreve for their contributions.
Thanks to Ann Cordell and Jerry Milanich for their reading and
comments on the original draft report. Thanks to David Anderson
and Virginia Horak for review and comment on a draft of this paper.

Ken Sassaman and an anonymous reviewer of this article offered
helpful suggestions and sharp criticism that forced us to go places we
had not anticipated. While we haven't fully addressed all issues
brought up by the reviewers, most have been. Other of their
questions are addressed in greater detail in papers cited in the text.

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'Bureau of Archaeological Research, Division of Historical Resources, R. A. Gray Building, 500 South Bronough Street,
Tallahassee, Florida 32399-0250
E-mail: ltesar@mail. dos.state.fl. us

21955 Hoot Owl Bend, Marianna, Florida 32448
E-mail: whitfieldjs@digitalexp. cor

Over the years, river divers-from artifact collecting
hobbyists to professional archaeologists-have recovered
culturally significant artifacts and faunal remains from
Florida's waters, as well as from waters in other states. The
artifact (Figure 1) described in this article was reported to the
State of Florida, Division of Historical Resources, Bureau of
Archaeological Research in accordance with the provisions of
the Florida's Isolated Finds procedures, which govern the
avocational collection of artifacts in Florida's rivers.'
Some isolated finds merit reporting in journals and other
publications (c.f., Allen 1971; Chason 1987; Dunbar 1981;
Tesar and Lewis 1992; Waller 1969, 1970). Information on
artifacts, even those not individually described or depicted in
publications, has helped further our understanding of prehis-
toric technology, subsistence, settlement, trade, and regional
distinctions (Dunbar and Waller 1983; Waller and Dunbar
Both Tesar and Whitfield have been involved in flint
knapping, related native-style artifact replication and use wear
and breakage studies. However, Tesar freely admits that
Whitfield is more proficient than he in such activities. Our
replication experience is incorporated into aspects of this
We pose and offer our answers to several questions
pertinent to the artifact found by Whitfield. How does it
compare with similar Paleoindian artifacts? What are the
dimensions of the object? From what quarry locale was the raw
material to make the artifact obtained? What were the apparent
manufacture steps involved in the making of this artifact?
Did it break during manufacture or during use?

Artifact Type

Descriptions ofvarious fluted Paleoindian point types from
Eastern North America were reviewed to determine in which
subset the one found by Whitfield might be placed. These
include Bull Brook (Byers 1954:343; Perino 1985:53), Clovis
(Bacon 1977:118; Bell 1958:16-17; Callahan 1979:156; Perino
1985:78; Van Buren 1974:194-195), Clovis Parallel (Bacon
1977:118), Cumberland (Bacon 1977:118; Bell 1960:22-23;
Lewis 1954:7; Perino 1985:94; Van Buren 1974:200-201),
Folsom (Bell 1958:26-27), Redstone (Bacon 1977:118; Perino

1968:74-75, 1985:319), Ross County (Bacon 1977:118; Perino
1971:86-87, 1985:330), and many others identified by Van
Buren (1974).
Bull Brook fluted points are described as medium-sized
with "a parallel-sided to triangular blade ... only a suggestion
of 'ears' is noted on the basal corners of some points. Lateral
and basal edges of the stem are ground" (Perino 1985:53).
While somewhat larger than the norm, the point base de-
scribed in this report generally fits the Bull Brook fluted point
description and illustrations.
The Clovis fluted point type ranges in size from small to
large with "short to medium-long flutes. The blade has
parallel to slightly convex edges; the basal edge is concave or
sometimes V-shaped or recurved. The lateral edges and basal
edge of the stem are ground" (Perino 1985:78). The point base
described in this report fits within the Clovis fluted point
The Cumberland fluted point has "a long, thick, narrow
blade with recurved edges and expanded base..." (Perino
1985:94). The point base described in this report is does not
have any of the Cumberland point diagnostic attributes.
The Folsom fluted point is a "thin, small to medium-sized,
well-made lanceolate point (that) has convex sides, a concave
basal edge, sharp basal corners and ground stem edges, A
wide flute on each surface sometimes extends to the tip"
(Perino 1985:134). The point base described in this report
does not conform to Folsom fluted point parameters.
The Redstone "is a medium to large triangular, fluted style
with convex sides and a concave basal edge. Basal edge is
ground ... the base is thinned and fluted, flutes extending from
one-third to more than one-half the distance towards the tip"
(Perino 1985:319). The point base described in this report has
parallel to slightly convex edges, rather than the triangular
shape of Redstone points.
The Ross County fluted point is described as a "thick
medium to large fluted point ... sides constrict towards the
basal end, then are straight to slightly expanded at the basal
corners. Most are widest in mid-section. Flutes are short, the
stem edge ground" (Perino 1985:330). The point base
described in this report does not fit within the Ross County
fluted point description. It also falls outside the other point
descriptions omitted from this brief comparative review.



JUNE 2002

VOL. 55(2)







Figure 1. Scanned artifact images of the Clovis fluted projectile point base found by Jeff Whitfield in the Chipola River near
Altha, Florida.

The result of our review of various fluted point type
descriptions is that it confirmed our original impression that
the artifact most closely fits the definition for the classic Clovis
fluted point type. While its length and width are larger than
the norm, it is smaller than the Clovis points found at the
Richey/Roberts site in East Wenatchee, Washington.


The artifact described here (Figure 2) is the fluted base of
a large bifacially flaked lanceolate point with a concave base,
which was obliquely broken across the point's blade just
forward of the normal hafting area. The maximum length of
the artifact described here is 67.4 mm. The artifact was
measured with its ventral side up (Figure 3). Width and cross-
section thickness measurements were taken at three locations
along the artifact: 17 mm from the distal end break where a
cross-section measurement could be taken, 40 mm from the
distal end, and 60 mm from the distal end. A final thickness

measurement was taken at the center of the proximal end of
the flute.
The artifact's width is surprisingly uniform at all three
locations: 42.1 mm, 42.4 mm, and 42.1 mm, respectively,
along the artifact's ventral face. The flute on the side from
which the first flute was removed is centered on the point's
midline. However, the flute on the opposite face, the ventral
side, drifts off toward one side, the right side when viewed
from the base toward the tip, at an angle of roughly 10
beginning from the center of the base. The right side longitu-
dinal guide flake scar also angles off to the right. This asym-
metry affects thickness measurements somewhat.
Thickness measurements were taken at the outer edge of
the flute. The right side thickness measurements from distal
to proximal end are 5.9 mm, 6.8 mm, and 5.1 mm, while the
corresponding left side thickness measurements are 7.4 mm,
7.5 mm, and 4.2 mm. Artifact midline thickness measure-
ments within the flute from distal to proximal end are 6.4 mm,
5.5 mm, and 3.4 mm (near the base of the flute). The flute




Sc 4 6 8 10

Florida Bureau of Archaeological Research

1/4 3/4~ 2 4


2002 VOL. 55(2)


"~ --


Figure 2. Sketches of Clovis fluted point dorsal and ventral faces and lateral edge.

Figure 3. Outline of artifact ventral face depicting dimensions at various points of measurement.

thickness variation at the three arbitrarily selected locations
are of course affected by the ripples associated with the flute
(or of any) percussion or pressure flake detachment and by the
depression in flake scars resulting from the bulb of percussion.
When viewing the ventral face, the greatest artifact length
is on the right side and angles obliquely across the blade to the
left side. The area of basal edge dulling ends roughly 17 mm

from that distal end break on the right side and 3 mm on the
left side. Thus, the artifact broke just beyond the hafted area.
Because of the location of the break, we are unable to
determine the overall length of the artifact (beyond an esti-
mated 160 mm/6.5"), its form beyond the basal hafting area,
and the length of the flutes. This complicates identification of
the point type.

Ln E
N C:


5.1 mm thick

6.8 mm thick

5.9 mm thick



)/* A = 42.1 mm wide
B = 42.4 mm wide
C 42.1 mm wide
V = Ventral face; D = Dorsal face cross-section profiles
67.4 mm maximum length




The Find Locale

Jeff Whitfield found the Paleoindian fluted spear point base
described in this report. He found it while diving in the
Chipola River in an area located upstream from Peacock
Bridge, about 5 km (3 miles) from Altha where County Road
274 crosses the river (Figure 4). He is among the many
Jackson County residents, and others, who have followed in
the footsteps and snorkel bubbles of Hub Chason, who devoted
some sixty years to collecting artifacts in and around the
ChipolaRiver (Chason 1987). Chason(1987:130-131) depicts
six points that "represent the large sizes of the Clovis points in
my [his] Chipola River collection." Three of these have basal
fluting, but none are as large as the point represented by the
base found by Whitfield.
The Chipola River is the primary drainage basin for the
Marianna Lowlands in Jackson County, Florida. It originates
near the Florida-Alabama state line in the north and winds its
way southward across Jackson and Calhoun counties to
eventually connect with the Apalachicola River in an area
roughly east of Wewahitchika, Florida.

Quarry Locale

Geologically the Marianna Lowlands represent a karst
basin and the Chipola River is entrenched for much of its
course in surface exposed limestone. In northwestern Florida
the chert used by Native Americans to make stone tools
generally came from Suwannee and St. Marks limestone
outcrops. In a broad assessment of chert quarry locales
available to Native Americans, Upchurch et al. observe that:

.. There are literally thousands of exposures of chert that the
Indians may have worked. In addition, sea level rise,
mantling of the bedrock with Pleistocene and Holocene
sands, and modifications of the terrain by modem man have
certainly obscured many of the sites quarried by pre-historic
man. Thus, it is futile and not cost effective to try to identify
and sample specific sites in a comprehensive manner.

We have opted to sample and describe chert sources grouped
into quarry clusters. A quarry cluster is an area known to
contain numerous exposures of chert, some of which must
have been used by early man, and in which the chert is
expected to be relatively uniform in fabric, composition, and
fossil content. Quarry clusters are usually within the expo-
sure belt of a single formation or facies. (Upchurch et al.

Upchurch et al. (1982:12) also observe that "chert seems to be
restricted to the flanks of areas of uplift (positive tectonic
features), such as arches and domes. There are two major
positive areas in Florida: the Ocala Uplift/Peninsular Arch
complex and the Chattahoochee Anticline (Puri and Vernon,
1964). These positive areas represent relative uplift of strata
accompanied by accelerated erosion in the crests of the up-
lifts." It is the erosion that exposes the chert resources for
surface quarrying. Upchurch et al. (1982) describe the
location, origin and characteristics of nineteen quarry clusters

in Florida.
The material used to make the point found by Whitfield is
a translucent chert with opaque bands of foraminifera. The
glow of a strong light may be seen through the now patinated
surface material. The translucent chert would have ranged
from a somewhat amber-honey-to-brown color.
The nearest known aboriginal quarry locale for this
material is in the Flint River drainage basin and is referred to
as Flint River Chert. Modern flint knappers still obtain such
translucent (tan, brown and honey colored) St. Marks Forma-
tion "coastal plain" chert from that area. The quarry clusters
identified by Upchurch et al. (1982) in the Marianna Low-
lands/Jackson County, Florida area all contain poorer quality
Suwannee Formation cherts. Suwannee limestone underlies
the St. Marks Formation.
Given the cautionary note on the incompleteness of their
study (see Upchurch et al. 1982:9-10), we cannot discount the
possibility that an as yet unidentified St. Marks formation
quarry locale may be located along the Chipola River drainage.
For instance, the St. Marks formation quarry locale may have
consisted of isolated erosion exposed surface material that was,
in effect, mined to exhaustion, such that only waste rubble
would have remained. Furthermore, such surface exposed
material may have been removed during the modern era for
use as construction material, a practice common during the
early 1900s. Regardless, further investigation of area quarry
locales is warranted.

Manufacture Steps

The process of making bifacial stone artifacts using flint
knapping techniques is well described by Errett Callahan
(1979), D. C. Waldorf (1993), and John C. Whittaker (1994)
and demonstrated at the many "knap-ins" that occur regularly
throughout the country. Through such replication studies and
activities, archaeologists have gained a better understanding of
the factors involved in the manufacture, use, maintenance,
breakage, and discard of the artifacts that we seek to study, and
from those studies the people whose culture we hope to better
We recognize the speculative aspects of such studies. We
acknowledge that there were many possible variations on the
way a knapped stone artifact might be shaped. Thus, we note
that understanding a method does not mean that it necessarily
was "the" method used to make a particular artifact. However,
it is more likely to approximate reality than speculations in the
absence of such knowledge.
It is customary to describe a stone artifact in terms of
proximal and distal ends and dorsal and ventral surfaces. For
a stone flake, the proximal end is the striking platform end
where the object was struck to detach it from a larger rock.
The distal end is the opposite end, that is the end most distant
from the platform end. The dorsal surface is the outer face of
a flake-the side with cortex (outer layer) or overlapping flake
scars. The ventral surface is the side toward the rock from
which it was removed. The ventral side of a flake or blade has
a bulb of percussion at the proximal end and there are usually

2002 VOL. 55(2)



Figure 4. Topographic map of a segment of the Chipola River drainage in the vicinity of Altha, Florida near where the Clovis
fluted projectile point base was found.

discernable ripples radiating downward away from the
platform end. Both are the result of the force wave that
resulted in the flake's detachment. The ventral surface often
curves inward toward the surface from which it has been
detached. That is why single platform cores often become
cone-shaped. An artifact made from a flake generally retains
at least some evidence of the ventral surface with a curve
toward that face. As one of the article's reviewers, citing
Andrefsky (1998) notes, flake curvature is a function of the
parent core's surface morphology. Flakes from bifacial cores
and bifacial artifact manufacture thinning flakes tend to be
curved, as a result of bending fractures. Whitfield observes
that the flakes also are curved because the stone rolled/moved

during impact.
In this report the proximal end of a stone projectile
point/knife is considered to be the hafted end while the distal
end is the point end, the end away from the spear shaft,
foreshaft or handle. The ventral versus dorsal face of the
artifact being described in this report was determined by
placing a metal ruler against the artifact's lateral edge. There
is a faint curve toward one face, the ventral face, suggesting
that the blank from which this artifact was made was a large
flake. It is noted, however, that in making projectile points the
knapper's goal is to remove flakes in a manner that eliminates
or otherwise reduces any curvature in the finished artifact.
The process generally begins with a large flake, referred to




as a "blank." The blank is then percussion flaked to shape the
artifact's preformm." The preform progresses through several
reduction/shaping stages. The final stage preform then has the
final edge retouching, hafting area edge dulling, and so forth
done to complete the finished product, which in the case of
projectile points is then hated. Tesar prepared a speculative
reduction series of schematic sketches to depict the sequence
through which the artifact found by Whitfield may have been
During the making of abifacial artifact, the knapperbegins
by envisioning the final product he hopes to produce from a
flake or blank. The material and tools used and the skill of the
knapper affect the end result. The skill of the knapper can
overcome many obstacles, but is limited by the tools used and
the nature of the material being knapped. While for scrapers
and shaves a marked curve on the ventral face may be desired,
for projectile points straightness is desired for good aerody-
namic and target penetration reasons, as well as to lessen the
chance of impact stress breakage. The knapper will envision
the long axis of the bifacial artifact to be shaped, as well as
consider the final width and thickness ratios needed. The
knapper will then detach flakes in a sequence intended to
produce the desired end product.
Knapping is a reduction process. Thus, you cannot make
a six-inch-long point from a six-inch-long blank. Indeed, the
artifact described in this study, estimated to have been about 6
/2 inches (160 mm) long, likely was made from a nine-inch-
long flake (Figure 5 Top).
Manufacture of the study artifact, indeed of all bifacial
artifacts, progressed through a series of shaping reduction
stages. First the selected flake (or nodule) is modified to form
a blank. As the study specimen was made from a flake that
sequence is described.
The blank is often a flake that has had its edges knapped
from the ventral side to roughly shape it and to establish the
platform surface along the dorsal face lateral edge. A blank
often looks like it may have been a unifacial scraper. Indeed,
fragments of blanks that broke during manufacture have not
infrequently been identified as broken unifacial scra-
pers/shaves. In many instances that identification may
actually be correct.
While the conversion of a flake to a blank may occur
immediately, there is ample archaeological evidence to suggest
that such flakes were first used as expedient tools. Bradley
(1989) describes this process during which the flake first is
used as a raw-edged knife, then resharpened as a serrated
denticulatee) knife/saw, and then unifacially edged for use as
a scraper during animal butchering and hide preparation
activities, before finally achieving the steep unifacial edge of
the blank's platform (Figure 5 Middle). The unifacial plat-
form effectively shifts the lateral edge center line toward the
dorsal face.
The next steps involve converting the blank to an early
stage (stage 1) preform and then progressively shaping the
preform until the final desired form is achieved, at which time
final edging and details are applied to create the finished
artifact. The process has been determined through replication

studies and deduced through analysis of artifacts collected
from archaeological contexts, particularly manufacture failures
and lithic debitage.
From beginning to end, reforms progress through a series
of stages. During this process the roughly shaped stone is
knapped to remove flakes in an ordered sequence to achieve
the desired final form. We suggest that manufacture of the
Clovis point described above progressed through five preform
The process begins by striking the outer edge of the dorsal
face platform surface of the blank at spaced intervals. (Tradi-
tionally, a hammerstone or wooden or antler billet was used,
although modem knappers often use a copper hammer.) This
is done to remove thinning flakes from the ventral face. The
result is generally identified as a stage 1 (or stage 1A) preform
(Figure 5 Bottom). Because of the reduced size of the Figure
5 and 6 illustrations, these graphics have been simplified and
the edging detail exaggerated to show key features. The actual
process is more detailed and dynamic, as the knapper adjusts
the process to meet the characteristics of the stone and so
The stage 1A preform represents the beginning of the
bifacial thinning process. Next, the lateral edge of the dorsal
face is carefully unifacially knapped to establish slightly
projecting striking platforms at intervals along the ventral face
(Figure 6 Top Left). The result maybe identified as a stage 1B
Striking the prepared platforms along the ventral surface
removes thinning flakes across the dorsal face. The result is
here identified as a stage 2A preform (Figure 6 Top Right).
Again, as noted above, the process is more dynamic than the
knap one face, prepare the platforms to knap the opposite face,
and so forth sequence depicted here. In reality, more edge
preparation and shaping toward the final form occurs. The
sequence depicted here is simply intended to illustrate the
general process.
However, the next step generally involves preparing the
platforms along the dorsal face. That step is here identified as
a stage 2B preform (Figure 6 Bottom Left). Those platforms
are then struck near the dorsal face lateral edge to remove
more thinning flakes from the ventral face. The result is a
middle stage bifacial preform here identified as a stage 3A
preform (Figure 6 Bottom Right). The intended final shape of
the artifact is becoming more apparent. The base of the stage
3A preform ranges from roughly straight to slightly convex.
The knapper would have inspected the stage 3A preform to
determine from which side to detach the first flute. In this
case, as in most recorded instances, the first flute was removed
from the dorsal face, which as noted is usually more convex
than the ventral side. Its slightly greater thickness on the
dorsal face would have helped lessen the chance of breakage
when the first flute was detached. The flute down the central
axis of the dorsal face also served to remove excess thickness
from the central face area.
In preparing to detach the flute the knapper has two
options. One option used by modem knappers, at least, is to
rest the artifact on its distal end in a firmly held position and


2002 VOL. 55(2)


C q







Figure 5. Schematic representations of initial Clovis fluted point manufacture sequence from flake to blank to stage 1








Figure 6. Schematic representations of Clovis fluted point manufacture sequence from stage 1B through stage 3A reforms.


2002 VOL. 55(2)


use a chest crutch (or similar functioning device) to gradually
apply pressure to a prepared platform on its proximal end until
the flake spalls off the outward facing side. The second
method, which is essentially the same process used to detach
bifacial thinning flakes, is to strike a prepared platform at
close to a 1300 angle to the point of impact (cf., Waldorf
1993:55). In percussion flaking the flute flake or any other
flake is detached from the underside of the striking surface.
Each technique produces a flake ventral surface and mirror
image flute surface with distinctive ripple and other character-
istics that help identify which method was used.
In both instances, indeed throughout the knapping process,
the prepared platform will be angled downward (generally
between a 60-70 angle) toward the artifact face from which
the flake is to be removed. This places the edge of the pre-
pared platform "below" the artifact edge midline or plane. The
width of the flute flake is in part controlled by removing
additional material away from either side of the area to be
struck, thus leaving a rounded nipple-like projection in the
central platform area. Waldorf (1993:63) observes that "for
best results in fluting the edge of the tip of the nipple should
lie below the center plane, but not quite even with the highest
point on the medium hump."
The platform area is then further prepared by abrasion to
make its edge thicker (stronger) and to remove any micro-
projections. The platform edge is abraded (ground) in the
direction opposite of the planned flake removal. In addition to
side-to-side edge abrasion may occur, although it is not
essential. The edge dulling and very small edge flaking
produced by this process appears similar to use wear edge
Sandstone, quartzite or another granular stone is generally
used as an edge abrader. Knapper's edge abraders often
served a dual function, being used also as hammer stones. The
stone used as a knapper's edge abrader gradually has narrow
V-shaped grooves worn into its surface by the stone being
abraded. The surface abraded against the edge of the artifact
being prepared becomes somewhat smooth with micro stria-
tions detectable only under magnification. The narrow, V-
shaped grooves on the knapper's edge abrader, appearing
somewhat like V-shaped saw marks, cannot be mistaken for
the generally deeper and rounded grooves occurring on
grooved abraders used to shape shell and bone points, pins,
beads and similarly ground artifacts.
The platform edge is prepared before knapping in order to
thicken (strengthen) and make regular, that is to isolate, the
surface to be struck or upon which to apply pressure. If that is
not done then the initial force used to detach a flake is dimin-
ished and misdirected as the unprepared edge is crushed and
projections alter the striking wave force used to detach a flake.
That results in hinge fractures at best and breakage of the
preform at worst. That is usually not an issue, however, since
edge preparation is an essential step throughout the knapping
process. Without its use it would have been difficult for the
knapper to produce a suitable preform in the first place.
The percussion technique appears to have been the method
used for the artifact being described here. The edges of the

finished final stage preform, including the basal edge, would
have been thin, approaching a knife-like sharpness, although
they would have been dulled in preparation for further bifacial
finishing work as well as to permit the safe handling of the
artifact during the fluting process.
Callahan (1979:154-155) provides an illustrated descrip-
tion of a fluting technique. Citing Callahan (1979), Waldorf
(1993:63-66) describes and illustrates three methods of
percussion removal of flutes in the manufacture of Clovis and
associated point types, depending on the size of the artifact.
Tom Detrick, another Florida flintknapper, has demonstrated
for Tesar a slightly different fluting technique, while Jim
Dunbar (personal communication) has observed yet a third
variation. As in the fluted point manufacture sequence
described by Morrow (1995) for the Ready/Lincoln Hills site
in Illinois, Detrick generally initiates fluting on thicker
intermediate stage reforms, rather than on the thinner final
stagepreformsdescribedby Callahan (1979). Indeed, Waldorf
(1993:63) describes a compromise between the two techniques
that he uses when making large fluted points, such as the one
described in this report.
Both Waldorf (1993:63-66) and Detrick (personal commu-
nication) recommend use of longitudinal guide flakes on either
side of the intended flute to help focus the force or detachment
blow along that narrowed path (see Figure 7 Top Left and
Bottom Right). The remains of such longitudinal guide flakes
are present on the study specimen (Figures 1 and 2).
Because of the impact force needed to detach the initial
flute from the dorsal face, the knapper would have held the
artifact with its dorsal face upward and used percussion or
pressure flaking techniques to create the desired platform edge
by unifacially removing flakes toward the ventral side (Figure
7 Top Right). This would have begun the process of also
making the artifact base concave. When the surface to be
struck had become sufficiently thick to satisfy the knapper, he
would then remove further material from either side of the
intended flute area to leave a rounded nipple-like projec-
tion-the flute flake-striking platform. Creating this isolated
area to be struck and removing longitudinal flakes on either
side of the intended flute helps focus and direct the energy
used to remove the flake. Without that focus, the flake would
tend to fan out on either side, as during the basic bifacial
artifact shaping process.
The artifact would then be held with the dorsal face
downward and the nippled platform held so that it might be
properly struck for detachment. For the flute flake to be
detached down the long axis of the artifact, the knapper must
strike the center of the nippled platform along the same long
axis line. Striking a corner of the nippled platform or striking
the platform at an angle to the artifact's long axis will cause
the flute to angle to the side in the direction toward which the
impact force has been directed. In the artifact described here,
the knapper successfully detached the dorsal side flute down
the artifact's long axis. This is identified here as a stage 3C
preform (Figure 7 Top Right).
After the dorsal side flute flake was removed, the knapper
engaged in further bifacial thinning, preparing a stage 4



2002 VOL. 55(2)


x^ A i


Figure 7. Sketch representations of Clovis fluted point manufacture sequence from stage 3B through stage 5A reforms.


preform (Figure 7 Bottom Left). Before that thinning was
begun, we estimate that the final stage preform may have had
a width of close to 60 mm in the basal area with a thickness-
to-width ratio of 1:8. Evidence for the post dorsal flute,
bifacial thinning is seen in the flake scars overlapping the flute
flake scar. The additional bifacial thinning probably produced
a 1:10 thickness-to-width ratio.
The next step involved preparing the platforms for and
removing the ventral face guide flakes. This step is identified
here as a stage 5A preform (Figure 7 Bottom Right). That
action was followed by preparation for removal of the ventral
face flute flake. The striking platform preparation process was
the same as that for the dorsal side flute flake, although the
angle of the striking platform was reversed. However, in order
to create a suitably thick striking platform, the knapper made
the base more concave than the norm for Clovis points, for
instance. This was because he had to knap past the deep
hollow left by the dorsal face flute flake bulb of percussion on
that surface. This was necessary in order to create a suffi-
ciently thick striking platform. A thinner striking surface
would crush upon impact, dampening and misdirecting the
intended striking force wave.
The remains of the unifacial platform preparation appear
as a series of small "thinning" flake scars on the proxi-
mal/basal end of the dorsal side flute flake scar (Figure 1).
The truncated V-shape of the base and the proximal end of the
ventral side flute flake scar indicate that the nippled striking
platform for the ventral face flute flake was narrow. It was
perhaps narrower than the knapper wished given the percus-
sion tools being used. That is to say that the deeper, more
concave striking area increased the amount of dexterity needed
to properly strike the platform to remove the flake. Further-
more, the remains of the basal thinning or longitudinal guide
flake scar on the right side of the ventral face base appears to
angle off to the right, rather than following the longitudinal
axis as the left side longitudinal flake scar does. This is
depicted in the final stage (stage 5B) preform illustration
(Figure 8 Left).
The accidental (?) removal of a deeper flake than intended
from the right side of the dorsal face during platform prepara-
tion may have made the knapper overly cautious with concern
that a basal ear might be accidentally detached. That may be
why the left side of the dorsal face is asymmetrically larger
than the right side, as less material was removed from the left
side-a factor that ultimately affected the ventral side flute
flake removal.
The ventral side flute flake scar angles off to the right side
of the ventral face when the artifact is viewed from the base
toward its tip end. From this we learn two things. First, the
knapper was right-handed. That is he held the artifact with his
left hand while he struck the platform with a hammer stone or
billet held in his right hand. Second, the knapper struck the
platform nipple on its right side at a slightly off-centered
angle. The remains of the striking platform scar at the base of
the ventral side flute confirm the direction of the angle at
which the platform was struck and the resulting flute flake
detached. Concern with accidentally striking the asymmetri-

cally larger left side basal ear of the dorsal side likely caused
the knapper to pull slightly to the right just before impact with
the flake platform.
The problem could have been resolved if the knapper had
shortened the point by trimming back the ears. Indeed, the
situation could have been worse than a slightly offset flute on
the ventral side. The artifact could have broken during the
fluting process. Yet we know from other features on the
artifact that it was broken later, because it underwent further
flaking and edge preparation, and because the flute scars on
both sides extend past the broken edge.
The basal area, and presumably the missing distal point
blade area, was subjected either to bifacial pressure flaking or
close interval percussion flaking to give it its final shape. The
resulting flake scars are at a deeper angle than the earlier
artifact shaping and thinning flake scars. Indeed, several of
these last basal finishing flake scars overlap the dorsal side
post-flute stage 4 preform bifacial thinning flake scars.
Although the sides on fluted points are often equidistant
from the flute centerline, adjustments had to be made in that
standard to accommodate the off-centered (canted) ventral side
flute. Thus, the side-to-flute edge width on the dorsal side is
greater on the left than on the right. A similar offset is seen
on the ventral side. Thus, the slightly misdirected strike
during the removal of the ventral side flute flake resulted in
the final basal shape being more asymmetrical than the norm
in such points. Each action in the manufacture process
affected the subsequent actions.
When the final basal shaping was completed, the knapper
used an abrader to dull the artifact's edge area along the
portion to be hafted. Such basal hafting area edge dulling is
one of the characteristic features of Paleoindian projectile
points. It would not have been done had the artifact broken
during manufacture. Neither would the final pressure flaked
edging to finish the artifact have occurred if it had broken
during manufacture. The artifact broke just beyond the edge-
dulled hafted area.
When looking lengthwise down the lateral edge of the
finished artifact it would have been nearly straight with a
slight natural curve toward the ventral side (Figure 8 Right).
Generally length has been sacrificed to achieve straightness.
In cross-section the dorsal side often is slightly more convex
than the ventral side of bifacial artifacts. That often is a result
of trying to maintain an artifact's width.


The finished artifact broke after it was hafted. The
question then becomes one of what caused it to break. Three
common breakage examples are considered. The first is the
result of being accidentally dropped or struck by another
object. Stone is brittle and somewhat easily broken upon firm
impact with another rock. The second incident could occur
after hafting as a direct result of impact with a relatively hard
area (i.e., the skull) of the intended target, or against a tree or
the ground. The third example is the result of inappropriate
stress on the spear shaft after it was imbedded in the target. In




Figure 8. Sketch representations of Clovis fluted point manufacture sequence from final stage 5B preform to a finished
projectile point modeled on the study artifact

the first example the edge break across the artifact would be
crisp. In the second example some break edge crushing and
hinging would be expected, while in the third option hinging
with minimal edge crushing would be expected because of the
dampening effect of being embedded in muscle tissue.
However, because of the range of variables artifacts exhibiting
the results of the second and third break fracture causes are
essentially indistinguishable.
It is noted that edge crushing on broken artifacts is
commonly observed on objects used as expedient scrapers and
shaves on moderately hard to hard surfaces. There have been
a number of replication experiments conducted that assist us
in the recognition of such use wear edge damage (c.f.,
Tringham et al. 1974).
There is minimal random edge crushing along the break
edge on the ventral side of the artifact. While some of that
damage has the same level of patination as that of the overall
artifact, the remainder is less patinated, clearly of more recent
age-the result of impact against other stone. The edge

crushing damage on the study specimen is suggestive, but
inconclusive, as it does not fit the pattern expected from use
However, the oblique break across the blade and the
manner in which it hinges around is consistent with that of an
impact stress fracture in which the kinetic energy of a thrown
spear shaft resulted in pressure on the point side after it had
lodged in its target. Applying sideways pressure on the spear
shaft after it lodged in the target could have produced a similar
breakage pattern. Unlike metal, the stone broke under that
pressure since it could not bend.
While it would be exciting to think that the break occurred
when a mammoth, mastodon, or bison was speared, it is as
likely that a more mundane explanation accounts for the break.
The more mundane explanation might involve poor luck in
which an unsuccessful hunter's thrown spear lodged firmly in
a tree with the point breaking as the shaft whipped over from
the impact force, or impact with a rock on the surface of the
karst terrain in which the artifact was found. In the more


2002 VOL. 55(2)


exciting successful hunter version the spear point could have
lodged in a bone of the animal and then broken when the
animal either rolled over on the shaft or forced the shaft
sidewise when it ran between some trees.
The broken base, when it was removed from the spear
shaft, could have been unifacially retouched or simply used
without modification as an end-scraper or shave. Such
specimens have frequently been found at Paleoindian-Early
Archaic sites, particularly at base camps where a wide range
of activities occurred (c.f., Tesar 1994:19-21) and especially in
lithic-poor locales. The discard without further use or modifi-
cation suggests that the event occurred away from a base camp
and that the hunter had sufficient stone resources to preclude
the need for such recycling.
Emotional discard also may explain the lack of further use
of the broken artifact base. Thus, regardless of its further
usefulness, and in disgust over its breakage, the frustrated
hunter may have thrown it into the river.
Alternatively, the point could have broken when the spear
shaft was snagged and pressed backward by an obstruction,
such as a tree or rock projection, when the animal reached the
riverbank and tried to cross the water. (As a hunter's note, it
has been observed that wounded white tail deer, for instance,
often seek out a stream or creek bed.) Thus, following the
oblique stress break, the spear shaft with the hafted base could
have pulled free to float downstream and be lost to the hunter.
A bit of bad luck indeed for the hunter, since replacing a good
spear shaft would have required more work than simply
replacing a broken point.


We have described the fluted point base recovered as an
isolated find in the Chipola River and compared it with other
fluted points made during the Paleoindian Period. We have
concluded that the point falls within the type description
parameters for large Clovis fluted points. We have gone
beyond simply describing the artifact and used our flint
knapping experience to offer the reader a better understanding
of how such artifacts are manufactured, used and ultimately
enter the archaeological record.
While the basal portion of the artifact precluded assessing
its tip or distal end, we consider studies like this to be far from
"pointless." An artifact is more than just an object. It is a
tangible part of a people's culture that when properly studied
and placed within the broader context of archaeological data
can provide insights about the people who made and used it.
Indeed, it is through such artifact analysis and the results of
associated replication studies that we are gaining a better
understanding of Native American lithic technology.


Tom Detrick reviewed an earlier draft copy of the article from a
knapper' s perspective, while Brenda Swann reviewed that same draft
from a non-knapper's perspective. Mike Wisenbaker's comments are
appreciated, as are those of the anonymous reviewers. Their
comments are reflected in the current version, although we remain

responsible for the overall text.


SFurther information on Florida's Isolated Finds procedures may be
obtained by writing to Isolated Finds, Bureau of Archaeological
Research, Division of Historical Resources, Florida Department of
State, R. A. Gray Building, 500 South Bronough Street, Tallahassee,
Florida 32399-0250. Information on Isolated Finds and other
agency programs may be found at http://www.flheritage.com.
2 An effort has been undertaken to record Paleoindian and Early
Archaic Artifacts found throughout Florida in order to resolve the
issue of survey bias. Individuals who have not yet done so are
encouraged to contact either James S. Dunbar or Louis D. Tesar at
the Bureau of Archaeological Research, Division of Historical
Resources, Florida Department of State, 500 South Bronough Street,
Tallahassee, Florida 32399-0250. Your assistance in recording
Paleoindian and Early Archaic artifact distribution and descriptive
documentation is appreciated. Dunbar and Tesar may also be
reached through the Internet at jdunbar@mail.dos.state.fl.us and
3 One of the reviewers recommended adding illustrations of the
artifact manufacture reduction sequence. Tesar complied, beginning
with an illustration of the final completed point and progressing
backward toward the beginning of the production sequence. The text
was revised to refer to those illustrations. However, the series
becomes progressively speculative as one progresses backward from
the finished artifact, as the number of permutations on flake detach-
ment order not to mention shape form and thickness increases
geometrically. It is stressed that these illustrations only generally
represent the process and NOT the manner in which the study artifact
was actually made.

References Cited

Allen, Gary
1971 A Leister Point from the Ichetucknee River. The Florida
Anthropologist 24(2):73-74.

Andrefsky, William, Jr.
1998 Lithics: Macroscopic approaches to analysis. Cambridge
University Press, United Kingdom.

Bacon, Willard S.
1977 Projectile Point Typology: the Basic Base. Archaeology of
Eastern North America 5(Fall): 107-122.

Bell, Robert E.
1958 Guide to the Identification of Certain American Indian
Projectile Points. Special Bulletin No. 2. Oklahoma
Anthropological Society.

1960 Guide to the Identification of Certain American Indian
Projectile Points. Special Bulletin No. 1. Oklahoma
Anthropological Society.

Bradley, Bruce
1989 Flintknapping. VHS Videotape produced by INTERpark
and Primitive Tech. Enterprises, Cortez, Colorado.

Byers, D. S.
1954 Bull Brook-a Fluted Point Site in Ipswich, Massachusetts.
American Antiquity 19: 343-351.




Callahan, Errett
1979 The Basics of Biface Knapping in the Eastern Fluted point
Tradition: A Manual for Flintknappers and Lithic Analysis.
Archaeology of Eastern North America 7(1):1-180

Chason, H. L.
1987 Treasures of the Chipola River Valley. Father & Son
Publishing, Inc., Tallahassee.

Dunbar, James S.
1981 The Kaskaskia Projectile Point: A Seminole Indian Metal
Arrow Point Type Recently Recognized in Florida. The
Florida Anthropologist 34(4):166-168.

Dunbar, James S., and Ben I. Waller
1983 A Distribution Analysis of the Clovis/Suwannee Paleo-
Indian Sites in Florida-A Geographic Approach. The
Florida Anthropologist 36(1-2):18-30.

Lewis, Thomas M. N.
1954 The Cumberland Point. Bulletin of the Oklahoma Anthro-
pological Society 11:7-8.

Morrow, Juliet E.
1995 Clovis Projectile Point Manufacture: a Perspective from the
Ready/Lincoln Hills Site, 11JY46, Jersey County, Illinois.
Midcontinental Journal ofArchaeology 20(2):167-191.

Penno, Gregory
1968 Guide to the Identification of Certain American Indian
Projectile Points. Special Bulletin No. 3. Oklahoma
Anthropological Society.

1971 Guide to the Identification of Certain American Indian
Projectile Points. Special Bulletin No. 4. Oklahoma
Anthropological Society.

1985 Selected Preforms, Points and Knives of the North Amer-
ican Indians, Volume 1. Points and Barbs Press, Idabel,

Tesar, Louis D.
1994 Johnson Sand Pit (8LE73): An Analysis and Comparative
Review of a Paleoindian Through Early Deptford Base
Camp in Leon County, Florida. Florida Archaeological
Reports 32, Florida Bureau of Archaeological Research,

Tesar, Louis D., and Chris Lewis
1992 A Folsom-like Projectile Point from the Mouth of Florida's
Santa Fe River. The Florida Anthropologist 45(3):287-

Tringham, Ruth, Glenn Cooper, George Odell, Barbara Voytek, and
Anne Whitman
1974 Experimentation in the Formation of Edge Damage: A New
Approach to Lithic Analysis. The Journal ofFieldArchae-
ology 1:171-196.

Upchurch, Sam B., Richard N. Strom, and Mark G. Nuckels
1982 Methods of Provenance Determination of Florida Cherts.
Florida State University System Star Grant No. 80-072,

Department of Geology, University of South Florida,

Van Buren, G. E.
1974 Arrowheads and Projectile Points with a Classification
Guide for Lithic Artifacts. Arrowhead Publishing Com-
pany, Garden Grove, California.

Waldorf, D. C.
1993 The Art of Flint Knapping (Fourth Edition). Mound
Builder Books, Branson, Missouri.

Waller, Ben I.
1969 Paleo-Indian and Other Artifacts from a Florida Stream
Bed. The Florida Anthropologist 22 (1-4):37-39.

1970 Some Occurrences of Paleo-Indian Projectile Points in
Florida Waters. TheFloridaAnthropologist23(4):129-134

Waller, Ben I., and James S. Dunbar
1977 Distribution of Paleo-Indian Projectiles in Florida. The
Florida Anthropologist 30(2):79-80

Whittaker, John C.
1994 Flintknapping: Making and Understanding Stone Tools.
University of Texas Press, Austin.

2002 VOL. 55(2)








Florida Anthropological Society Chapters

9 "-.10


) Archaeological Society of Southern Florida
i495 NW 35th Ave., Miami, FL 33142

) Broward County Archaeological Society
720 Nova Drive #7-102, Davie, FL 33317

) Central Florida Anthropological Society
.O. Box 947544, Maitland, FL 32794-7544 4

) Central Gulf Coast Archaeological Society 1
7701 22nd Ave. N., St. Petersburg, FL 33710

) Indian River Anthropological Society
1705 S. Tropical Trail, Merritt Island, FL 32952

) Kissimmee Valley Archaeological and Historical Conservancy 2
95 Huntley Oaks Blvd., Lake Placid, FL 33852

7) Northeast Florida Anthropological Society
144 Torino Place, Jacksonville, FL 32244

8) Panhandle Archaeological Society at Tallahassee
/o The Tallahassee Trust for Historic Preservation ,
123 E. Virginia Street, Tallahassee, FL 32301 ""0/" .-
/r ^

9) Pensacola Archaeological Society
P.O. Box 13251, Pensacola, FL 32591

10) St. Augustine Archaeological Association
P.O. Box 1301, St. Augustine, FL 32085

11) Southeast Florida Archaeological Society
P.O. Box 2875, Stuart, FL 34995

12) Southwest Florida Archaeological Society
P.O. Box 9965, Naples, FL 34101

13) Time Sifters Archaeology Society
P.O. Box 25642, Sarasota, FL 34277

14) Volusia Anthropological Society
P.O. Box 1881, Ormond Beach, FL 32175

15) Warm Mineral Springs Archaeological Society
P.O. Box 7797, North Port, FL 34287


Anthropologists and Indians in the New South. Rachel A.
Bonney and J. Anthony Paredes, eds. Tuscaloosa, AL: The
University of Alabama Press. 2001. xiv + 286 pp., tables,
illustrations, figures, indices. $29.95, paper.

Department ofSociology, Anthropology, and CriminalJustice
University of North Florida
Jacksonville, FL 32224

One of the few cultural works covering Native Americans of
the South in recent years, Anthropologists and Indians in the
New South makes a willing effort to address both historical
and contemporary concerns in studies of native peoples. The
book itself is a collection that began with an invited session at
the Southern Anthropological Society 30th Anniversary
Meeting in 1996. The list of eighteen contributors to this
latest installment in the Contemporary American Indian
Studies series, edited by J. Anthony Paredes, is prolific and
comprehensive. The book is divided into five central themes
with something for anyone working with Southeastern Indians:
"Changing Relationships Between Anthropologists and
American Indians," "Southeastern Indians and the Law,"
"Anthropological Contributions to Native American Communi-
ties," "Culture Preservation and Ethnic Identity," and "Culture
Contact and Exchange."
The book begins with a foreword by Raymond Fogelson, a
well-known figure familiar to many in the field of American
Indian studies who summarizes the book as essentially "ap-
plied," deriving its direction from the necessity of working
relationships between native peoples and anthropologists that
are cooperative and collaborative in nature. This foreword is
followed by comments from the volume co-editor J. Anthony
Paredes, Chief of Ethnography and Indian Affairs with the
Southeast Regional Office of the National Park Service, and
concludes with a series of comments from several native
authorities (Clara Sue Kidwell Choctaw/Chippewa, Billy L.
Cypress Seminole Tribe of Florida, and Larry Haikey -
Mvskoke Nation of Oklahoma), all of whom are involved in
tribal heritage preservation programs.
The first section, "Changing Relationships Between Anthro-
pologists and American Indians," contains contributions by
Max White (Anthropologists and the Eastern Cherokees),
Susan Stans (Are You Here to Study Us? Anthropological
Research in a Progressive Native American Community) and
Janet Levy (The Archaeologists'-and Indians'-New World).
Max White's paper gives a historical account of research
among the Cherokee, bringing to light the work of James
Mooney and John Gulick, both of whom upheld the Boasnian
tradition to give accurate and fair accounts of Eastern Chero-

kee mythology and life, while maintaining high ethical
standards of non-exploitation in their research. He concludes
with areas that anthropologists have been helpful to native
communities, such as in encouraging language preservation
programs in schools and aiding communities to protect their
archaeological and cultural heritage sites.
The second chapter by Susan Stans discusses her own
research at the Brighton Seminole Reservation where she
heeded the warnings of modern-day native scholars such as
Vine Deloria, Jr. to employ an emic perspective in her alcohol-
ism research that sought to use the perspective of community
members, and to establish lasting ties by sharing her results
with the community and only using approved information in
her dissertation.
The third chapter by Janet Levy is the only archaeologically
focused article in the book. Janet discusses the history of
archaeological research involving native remains before the
founding of the Native American Graves Protection and
Repatriation Act (NAGPRA), and follows it with her thoughts
on the future of archaeological relations with native peoples.
Her perspective is not pessimistic for archaeology, but rather
one of newfound hope and respect.
The fourth and fifth chapters are by George Roth (Tribal
Recognition in the South) and Karen Blu (Region and Recog-
nition: Southern Indians, Anthropologists, and Presumed
Biology). Both involve Southeastern Indians and legal
questions. Roth's chapter is a historical survey of the struggle
for federal recognition among the Chitimacha, Coushatta,
Tunica-Biloxi, Catawba, Eastern Cherokee, Mississippi
Choctaw, Jena Choctaw, Creek, and Seminole. Blu, in
contrast, addresses the biological nature of requirements for
federal recognition of tribes, focusing on the political nature of
"blood quantum" requirements for tribal enrollment that vary
from group to group, as well as the role of anthropologists in
the legal battles for federal recognition of Indian peoples.
The next three chapters (six, seven, and eight), I found the
most interesting of the book, as they pertained to applied
anthropology and its contributions to the research of contem-
porary issues of Southeastern Indians. Lisa Lefler's article
impressively makes the case for culturally based approaches to
the study of alcohol use and abuse among Native Americans.
Having researched alcohol use behavior among the Eastern
Cherokee of North Carolina, Lefler's applied research contrib-
uted to the establishment of an alcohol treatment program.
Lefler's chapter is followed by that of Allan Burns on the
Maya of Indiantown, Florida where he discusses his 20 years
of research with this community, from its refugee origins, to
a vibrant and changing community with new problems and
prospects. Each step of the way, Burns has acted as a "culture
broker," carefully assisting the Florida Maya to meet their


JUNE 2002

VOL. 55(2)



special educational, legal, and professional needs. He calls the
Florida Maya "Florida's newest Indians of the South," a
statement that makes us reassess our opinions of Indians from
purely a historical perspective, instead turning our attention
towards current anthropological issues of transnational
migration and refugee studies (p. 108).
The final "applied" chapter is by Penny Kessel, chronicling
relations between the Miccosukee Tribe and "extra tribal"
federal and state agencies following the devastating impact of
Hurricane Andrew on the people of south Florida in 1992.
Through the eyes of these three researchers, one gets a sense
of the new needs of anthropology, as researchers must now
step-up to act on behalf of native peoples at their request.
The section on applied anthropological research is followed
by two chapters (numbers nine and ten) pertaining to culture
preservation and ethnic identity. The first contribution, by
Patricia Lerch, focuses on the pan-Indian powwow. Despite its
transcendence from a Plains origin, argues Lerch, the regalia
of dancers, coupled with singing, drumming, and camp
construction, reflect the unique personal and tribal identities
of its participants. Similarly, Rachel Bonney, in chapter ten,
explores artistic expression, namely the explosion of the
"miniaturization trade" of baskets, toys, pottery, and other
Indian goods that previously were not feasible or carry no
sacred value. She structures her research on the newfound
marketability of such goods by Indian peoples to tourists, who
then turn their profitability into mechanisms to sustain their
traditional lifeways.
The final section ofAnthropologists and Indians in the New
South is composed of three chapters pertaining to "culture
change and contact." These final chapters cover traditional
research topics where the anthropologist is the one who
benefits from the research.
Chapter eleven, by Emanuel Drechsel, discusses the use and
impact of "Mobilian Jargon" (Chikasaw-Choctaw trade
language) on studies of Southeastern Indian peoples, especially
the Mississippian complex. This language, while with
Muskogean origins, features unique morphology and syntax
that set it apart from Mobilian language and make it mutually
unintelligible to either Chikasaw or Choctaw proper.
Chapter twelve, by Michael Logan and Stephen Ousley,
addresses the practices of intermarriage and hypergamy
(marriage for the purposes of attaining a higher social status)
of Indian women as ways to maximize self-interest. Their
research, using data collected by Franz Boas roughly 100 years
ago, support a strong correlation between female Cherokee
exogamy resulting in reduced blood quantum, yet higher
fertility rates and reduced infant mortality.
The final chapter in the book is by Kendall Blanchard. In
this chapter, Blanchard reflects on how southeastern Indians
have affected his life as both President and Professor of
Anthropology at Fort Lewis College, Durango, Colorado.
While the only work in this compilation that does not directly
deal with southeastern Indians, Blanchard's article addresses
the problems of integration and culturally appropriate educa-
tional needs common to all native peoples.
In summary, Anthropologists andIndians in the New South

is a comprehensive book relating current trends in anthropo-
logical research among Southeastern Indians. Its strengths lie
in the wealth of articles in applied anthropology, and the
inclusion of native reactions and perspectives on anthropology.
In these areas, the book would be particularly useful to courses
in applied anthropology and Native American studies. Sadly,
however, there is only one article about Southeastern archaeol-
ogy. This problem aside, Anthropologists and Indians in the
New South is worth the read for anyone who works with Native

The Southern and Central Alabama Expeditions of Clarence
Bloomfield Moore. Edited and with an Introduction by Craig
T. Sheldon, Jr. University of Alabama Press, Tuscaloosa.
2001. x + 320 pp., tables, illustrations, indices. $39.95, paper.

Environmental Services, Inc., 8711 Perimeter Park Blvd.,
Suite 11, Jacksonville, FL 32216
E-mail: ghendryx@esinc.cc

Southeastern archaeologists, prepare yourselves for another
outstanding reissue of the C.B. Moore classics. In this book,
the University of Alabama Press has republished 10 ofMoore's
reports and articles from his work in southern and central
Alabama, including Alabama-related excerpts from his Florida
panhandle reports. A more than thorough introduction by Dr.
Craig T. Sheldon, Jr. of Auburn University at Montgomery,
provides an appropriate 21st century backdrop for the century-
old excavations.
We learned of him in Archaeology 101, we've attended
conference symposia dedicated to his work, we've marveled
his experience, envied his opportunities, and wept a silent tear
at his record of site destruction. Clarence Bloomfield Moore
is indisputably a controversial figure of southeastern archaeol-
ogy. Traveling the major waterways on his boat, "Gopher,"
fully equipped with diggers and dignitaries, he selectively
stopped at the most impressive sites accessible. With antiquar-
ian motives, C.B. excavated more sites in a field season than
some archaeologists will in a lifetime. The excavations were
biased toward mounds, and the extensive removal of culturally
rich soils was briefly documented in a manner of paragraphs
that typically focused on the morphological and stylistic
characteristics of museum worthy artifacts (many of which
were associated with burials).
Despite the manner in which the excavations were con-
ducted and reported, Moore's work does provide valuable
information. The reports and articles in this volume are
presented as facsimile reproductions, with few modifications
from their original publication. Thus artifact photographs and
illustrations are presented as large and as crisp as they were in
their original release. Seven of Moore's regional reports are
presented, including: Certain Aboriginal Remains of the
Alabama River (1899); Certain Aboriginal Remains of the
Tombigbee River (1901); Excerpt from Certain Aboriginal
Remains of the Northwest Florida Coast. Part I (1901); Certain
Aboriginal Remains of the Lower Tombigbee River (1905);


2002 VOL. 55(2)


Certain Aboriginal Remains on Mobile Bay and on Mississippi
Sound (1905); Excerpt from Mounds of the Lower
Chattahoochee and Lower Flint Rivers (1907); and Excerpt
from the Northwestern Florida Coast Revisited (1918).
A total of 91 sites is described within the reports, including
74 mound sites. Moore described the remaining 17 sites as
cemeteries, dwelling sites, campsites, and shell sites (mounds,
deposits, ridges, and banks). Reports range from 11 to 61
pages in length, and each report begins with a one-to-two page
introduction that includes regional maps, geographic informa-
tion, site type characteristics, survey methodology, river
navigability, and Moore's general impressions regarding the
archaeology of the region. Following the introduction, a site
inventory is provided, followed by site descriptions. Ranging
in length from 3 lines to 17 pages, the site descriptions are
typically general, and provide information on soil stratigraphy,
mound morphology, and burial practices, as well as land
ownership and time and labor investments. Moore does
occasionally supplement his descriptive narratives with
scholarly pursuits. For example, he submits copper samples
for chemical composition analysis from the "Mounds on the
Charlotte Thompson Place" to determine procurement origin,
and he comments on cranial morphology (artificial flattening)
at the "Aboriginal Cemetery, Durand's Bend." Also, Moore
is to be partially commended for his observations on
intraregional artifact similarities and burial customs, and his
awareness of stratigraphy.
Three shorter articles, reprinted fromAmericanAnthropolo-
gist are also included in this volume, including: The So-called
"Hoe-Shaped Implement;" Aboriginal Urn-Burial in the
United States; and A Form of Ur-Burial on Mobile Bay.
These short articles illustrate Moore's attempts to synthesize
regional information, drawing from his own work as well as
that of others.
While reading Moore's reports, it is easy to become frus-
trated by the minimal information yielded from the destruction
of so many valuable sites. Thankfully, Craig Sheldon, Jr.,
illustrates that although Moore's excavations have altered
many key sites, careful archival research and survey efforts
have permitted their identification and interpretation.
Sheldon provides a thorough and informative 114-page
introduction, consisting of text, tables, notes, and references
cited. The first 13 pages outline the format of this volume,
and contain background information on the expeditions, and
interesting tidbits on the life of the outlandish C.B. Moore.
The background discussion presents Moore's excavation and
publication schedule, and information on the Gopher, his
scouts, steamer captains, and crew. Passages from Moore's
field books and those of his scouts, detail information on their
survey and excavation strategies, and provide more personal
insight regarding their views on the archaeology of the region,
and an evaluation of their own work and integrity. Also, this
portion of the introduction lists the storage location of various
artifacts and osteological remains, provides a brief discussion
of Moore's support staffof graphic artists and analysts, and is
concluded by a discussion of Moore's legacy in Alabama.

Sheldon provides a well-researched overview of the central
and southern Alabama study region (pp 14-67). Presented in
a similar manner to Moore's reports, he divides his discussion
by river drainage. The regional discussions begin with a
modernized topographic and physiographic portrayal of the
study regions, followed by updated site descriptions, presented
in comparable order to those of Moore's reports. Sheldon
affords reference to more recent regional surveys and excava-
tions, provides artifact typologies, assigns sites to their
complexes and phases, and incorporates information only
available from Moore's field books. Furthermore, Sheldon
bolds all site names, which permits quick reference and
facilitates flipping between his updates and Moore's descrip-
tions, something I found useful and entertaining. The infor-
mation contained within this portion of the introduction is
complete and well organized and provides a valuable primary
reference source for the post-Archaic period of central and
southern Alabama.
Sheldon continues with a recap of the legacy of C.B. Moore
in central and southern Alabama, and the appendix. The
appendix (pp 69-88) is largely comprised of a 17-page table
that links Moore's sites to their modern trinomial site number
(whenever possible), and which also provides cultural affilia-
tions and modern references. The final pages contain detailed
footnotes that were referenced through the introduction, and
references cited, which conclude the introduction.
In sum, this classic book belongs on every shelf (after
reading it of course) next to the additional books in the series.
Log on to the UA website (www.uapress.ua.edu) and order it
today. Complete with C.B. Moore's museum quality specimen
artifact photos and illustrations, and Craig Sheldon's well-
presented regional discussion that commemorates Moore's
work, this volume is a starting point for the archaeology of
southern and central Alabama and surrounding regions.

Coosa: The Rise and Fall of a Southeastern Mississippian
Chiefdom. Marvin T. Smith. 2000. The Ripley P. Bullen
Series. University Press of Florida, Gainesville. xix + 146 pp.,
illustrations, color plates, references, index. $49.95 (cloth),
ISBN 0-8130-1811-0.

Arkansas Archeological Survey, P. 0. Box 241, Parkin, AR
E-mail: jeffmitchem@juno.com

It was not until the latter decades of the twentieth century
that most American archaeologists began to realize the
importance of communicating the results of research to
members of the general public. It has now become common
for researchers to prepare readable syntheses in addition to
jargon-filled technical reports, especially for projects that
cover a large area. This laudable idea sounds easy, but many
authors have discovered that it is extremely difficult to boil
down great amounts of archaeological and historical informa-
tion into a form that can be read and understood by just about


anyone. A major difficulty is that too much summarizing will
gloss over important events, trends, or details that are essential
for telling the whole story.
I suspect that Marvin Smith encountered this problem in the
writing of this fine book. As he states in the preface (p. xix),
he originally wrote it as a popular book for a lay audience. But
rather than being published in the University Press of Florida's
"Native Peoples, Cultures, and Places of the Southeastern
United States" popular series, it is instead included in the
highly-regarded but more technical "Ripley P. Bullen" series.
I wondered about this when I first began reading it, but the
wisdom of the decision eventually became clear. Smith
gathers together a tremendous amount of archaeological and
historical information from a region encompassing northwest
Georgia, northeast Alabama, and eastern Tennessee, and puts
it into a form that makes sense and tells an interesting story.
In order to tell the whole story, however, it was necessary to
include a lot of detail and supporting information, some of
which is technical in nature and cannot be watered-down to
the fifth grade reading level. The result is a case study of the
evolution of a Mississippian chiefdom that is readable and
interesting for the adult reader who has an interest in the
archaeology of the Southeast.
Smith begins with a brief summary of the archaeological
sequence in the region prior to A.D. 900. This is followed by
a more extensive (and frankly, more interesting) discussion of
the Mississippian Period (post-A.D. 900) occupation of the
area. He does an admirable job of explaining the basics of
paramount chiefdoms, and discusses the archaeology done at
some of the famous sites in the region: Etowah, Little Egypt,
Bell Field, and others that are identified as towns in the Coosa
chiefdom. Just enough citations are included to allow the
interested reader to figure out where to go for more in-depth
The next chapter focuses on what information about Coosa
can be gleaned from the accounts of sixteenth-century Spanish
expeditions in the region. Spanish artifacts from sites like
Poarch Farm and King in Georgia, and Hightower Village and
Pine Log Creek in Alabama, provide convincing evidence for
the passage of both the 1540 de Soto and 1560 de Luna
expeditions through the Coosa province. Comparison of the
Spanish descriptions of settlements clearly reveals that the
Coosa chiefdom was on the decline by 1560. Whether this was
a direct result of contact with the Spaniards or part of the
normal cyclical rise and decline of chiefdoms (see Anderson,
The Savannah River Chiefdoms: Political Change in the Late
Prehistoric Southeast, 1994) is open to debate. The 1566-
1568 expedition of Juan Pardo made contact with some of the
Coosa towns in east Tennessee, but the account of their trek
does little more than support the notion that the chiefdom was
still in place at that time.
Up until this point in the book, the story of the Coosa
chiefdom was not too hard to follow. But the fourth chapter,
covering the eighteenth century, is more complicated.
Skipping the seventeenth century for the time being (it is
addressed in a later chapter), Smith concentrates on recounting
customs and lifeways of the Upper Creeks in the 1700s, as

known from ethnographic and ethnohistorical sources. The
seeming blurring of focus is not the author's fault, it is simply
due to the fact that there are no documentary materials for the
Coosa region until well into the eighteenth century. This was
a complicated and dynamic time in the Southeast, and he is
able to glean bits of information about the Coosa area and its
settlements from English, Spanish, and French accounts and
maps. The situation was complicated even more by the arrival
of many refugee groups in the region. Smith provides specific
descriptions and evidence about towns within the chiefdom
that survived until the late 1700s.
The fifth chapter focuses on the sixteenth century again, this
time concentrating more on the archaeological evidence for the
Coosa chiefdom. Smith skillfully meshes the results of
twentieth-century studies of early Spanish accounts with
archaeological research on presumed Coosa towns in the
region. He examines the various sites in terms of probable
shifts in power between towns in the chiefdom through time,
and the growth of the overall Coosa chiefdom as shown by the
archaeological evidence. This is followed by a chapter entitled
"The Lost Years," which addresses what likely happened
during the 1600s, when there is little or no documentary
evidence for the region. Old World diseases and subsequent
movements of populations seriously altered the hierarchical
structure of the chiefdom, essentially disrupting the paramount
chiefdom and causing its collapse. The Coosa peoples and
others then coalesced into the historically-known Upper Creek
groups. Smith relies heavily on historical archaeology to make
his case here, and he utilizes artifact styles and other archaeo-
logical information as evidence to show the chronological
sequence of events. He shines in this chapter partly because
Smith initially developed the detailed chronology of European
beads and other artifacts in this region (Smith, Archaeology of
Aboriginal Culture Change in the Interior Southeast, 1987).
A short concluding chapter summarizes what is known
about the rise and decline of the Coosa chiefdom. Smith
points out many types of research that still need to be carried
out on the chiefdom: additional excavations of known or
suspected towns, reanalysis of the large collections from some
of the excavated sites in light of present knowledge, and
archaeological research in Abihka towns in Oklahoma, where
descendants of the Coosa people were moved in the 1830s.
The book includes a number of useful maps and illustrations
of artifacts. Especially nice are eight pages of color plates in
the center of the book. These are crisp, clear photographs of
European and aboriginal artifacts. The photographs of glass
beads are particularly striking.
Smith's book is a useful synthesis of information on one of
the largest and best-documented chiefdoms in what is now the
southeastern United States. The combination of a great deal
of focused archaeological work in the area and the relative
wealth of documentary evidence makes the Coosa chiefdom an
excellent case study of the evolution of a southeastern chief-
dom. Marvin Smith is to be applauded for marshalling this
diverse wealth of information into a coherent and interesting
account. I look forward to a more affordable paperback


2002 VOL. 55(2)


About the Authors:

Brad Biglow is an adjunct professor of anthropology at the University of North Florida, Jacksonville. An applied
anthropologist, he holds a Ph.D. in anthropology from the University of Florida for a dissertation dealing with language and
culture preservation among the Huichol Indians of Mexico. His research foci are Native American studies, the anthropology
of religion, and the anthropology of education.

Gregory Heide received his M.A. in Anthropology in 1999 from Florida State University. Since that time he has served as
an archaeologist with the Southeast Archeological Center, National Park Service in Tallahassee, Florida. He is currently
investigating shell rings in South Carolina.

Greg S. Hendryx is an archaeologist with Environmental Services, Inc., in Jacksonville, Florida. He has been involved in
academic and cultural resource projects in the southeastern United States since 1990, with a background in prehistory.

Jeffrey M. Mitchem is Associate Archeologist with the Arkansas Archeological Survey and Associate Professor at the
University of Arkansas. He is involved in research in Arkansas, Florida, and Jordan. He is currently the President of the
Society of Bead Researchers.

Mike Russo is an archaeologist with the National Park Service Southeast Archeological Center, Tallahassee. He received
his M.A. and Ph.D. in Anthropology from the University of Florida in 1986 and 1992 respectively. He has worked on and
written about Late Archaic mounds and shell rings in Florida, Louisiana, Georgia, and South Carolina.

Rachel Smith, following a career as a firefighter/paramedic, came to Florida State University where she is currently studying
Physical Anthropology. She is specializing in Bioarchaeology, with a concentration in Paleopathology. She is particularly
interested in the disease processes that affected Native American populations, prior to European contact.

Louis Tesar earned his bachelor's and master's degrees in anthropology from Florida State University. His first
archaeological survey report was completed as an undergraduate in the mid-1960s. He has continuously worked as a
professional archaeologist since 1973. His research interests span a wide range of topics. Tesar was the Editor of The
Florida Anthropologist from 1983-1992, and also was a recipient of the Ripley P. Bullen Award in 1987. He is a strong
proponent of public archaeology.

Jeff Whitfield is an avocational archaeologist and primitive technologist. He is also a member of the Florida Anthropological
Society and founder of the Chipola Archaeological Society.


Non Profit Org.
Permit No. 911
Tallahassee, FL



Analysis of Skeletal Material from Calico Hill, Florida:
A Question of Paleopathology vs. Taphonomy. Rachel K. Smith

The Joseph Reed Shell Ring. Michael Russo and Gregory Heide.

A Reduction Deduction: A Clovis-Like Fluted Base from the Chipola River
Louis D. Tesar and Jeff Whitfield


Bonney and Paredes: Anthropologists and Indians in the New South. Brad M. Biglow

Moore: The Southern and Central Alabama Expeditions of Clarence Bloomfield Moore.
Greg S. Hendryx

Smith: Coosa: The Rise and Fall of a Southeastern Mississippian Chiefdom.
Jeffrey M. Mitchem

Copyright 2002 by the
ISSN 0015-3893

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