Evolution of a late prehistoric winter village on the interior plateau of British Columbia: Geophysical investigations, radiocarbon dating, and spatial analysis of the Bridge River site

Anna Marie Prentiss, Guy Cross, Thomas A. Foor, Mathew Hogan, Dirk Markle, David S. Clarke

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    Abstract

    A common issue for archaeologists who study intermediate-scale societies is defining scale and complexity of occupations across entire villages or towns. This can be a major problem since an understanding of site-wide inter-household occupa-tion patterns can be crucial for accurate reconstruction of village demographics and socio-economic organization. In this paper we present new research at the Bridge River site, a large complex hunter-gatherer village in British Columbia, designed to develop a site-wide history of household occupation patterns. We accomplish this through broad-scale geophysical investigations, test excavations and an extensive program of radiocarbon dating. Results of the study suggest that the village grew rapidly between ca. 1800 and 1250 cal. B.P. expanding from 7 to at least 29 simultaneously occupied houses. Variability in household spacing and size indicate that social organization may have grown increasingly complex parallel with rising numbers of households.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)59-81
    Number of pages23
    JournalAmerican Antiquity
    Volume73
    Issue number1
    DOIs
    StatePublished - Jan 2008

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