Date of Award
Master of Arts
The purpose of this study is to better understand the transmission of Mississippian cultural practices onto the Southern Plains during the Washita River phase (1250-1450 CE), by examining a possible exchange of cultural material between the Caddoan Mississippians and Southern Plains Villagers at the Lee site (34GV3), a Washita River phase village located in south-central Oklahoma. A geophysical survey was conducted across the site to locate datable prehistoric features, so that the temporally non-diagnostic artifacts recovered from these features could be attributed to a specific time period. Three magnetic anomalies were excavated after the geophysical survey, revealing the presence of two prehistoric features. Lithic artifacts recovered during the excavation were classified by geological material and attributed to a geographic source, to identify any lithic materials derived from Caddoan Mississippian territory. The presence of such materials may indicate a trade in lithic materials from the Caddoan Mississippians to the Washita River phase villagers. The excavation also yielded a single sherd of pottery bearing an incised Caddoan Mississippian motif. PXRF analysis was conducted on the incised sherd to help determine whether it was imported or locally made, as locally made Caddoan pottery could indicate the permanent presence of Caddoan Mississippian individuals on the Plains, whereas imported pottery would indicate trade. The available data collected during the study indicate trade between the two groups but provide no evidence of Caddoan transplants at the Lee site.
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