The Archaeology of the Caddo

The Archaeology of the Caddo

The Archaeology of the Caddo

The Archaeology of the Caddo

Synopsis

This landmark volume provides the most comprehensive overview to date of the prehistory and archaeology of the Caddo peoples. The Caddos lived in the Southeastern Woodlands for more than 900 years beginning around AD 800900, before being forced to relocate to Oklahoma in 1859. They left behind a spectacular archaeological record, including the famous Spiro Mound site in Oklahoma as well as many other mound centers, plazas, farmsteads, villages, and cemeteries. The Archaeology of the Caddo examines new advances in studying the history of the Caddo peoples, including ceramic analysis, reconstructions of settlement and regional histories of different Caddo communities, Geographic Information Systems and geophysical landscape studies at several spatial scales, the cosmological significance of mound and structure placements, and better ways to understand mortuary practices. Findings from major sites and drainages such as the Crenshaw site, mounds in the Arkansas River basin, Spiro, the Oak Hill Village site, the George C. Davis site, the Willow Chute Bayou Locality, the Hughes site, Big Cypress Creek basin, and the McClelland and Joe Clark sites are also summarized and interpreted. This volume reintroduces the Caddos heritage, creativity, and political and religious complexity.

Excerpt

The archaeology of the Caddo Indian peoples that lived in the forested habitats of southwest Arkansas, northwest Louisiana, eastern Oklahoma, and eastern Texas, in the far western reaches of the southeastern United States, has been the topic of archaeological inquiry since the early twentieth century. The study of Caddo archaeology over the years has been important in inspiring questions and interpretations of the native history of the Caddo peoples beginning some 2,500 years ago, as well as their relationships with Woodland and Mississippian cultures in the lower Mississippi valley and the eastern United States, as well as possible relationships with northern Mexican and Mesoamerican cultures. These interpretations have flowed from the early study of such impressive Caddo mound centers at the George C. Davis site (in east Texas), the Gahagan, Mounds Plantation, and Belcher sites (in northwest Louisiana), the Crenshaw and Battle sites (southwest Arkansas), and the Harlan and Spiro sites (in eastern Oklahoma), to the more wide-ranging and eclectic archaeological and geophysical studies of many sites, features, and material culture assemblages that are the foundation of Caddo archaeology today. Nevertheless, while the character of Caddo archaeology, and the histories of generations of Caddo peoples embodied in preserved archaeological sites, is better known today than ever before, it is fair to say that the appreciation of the diversity of cultural practices and traditions that came to characterize the pre-Columbian Caddo world is only now being realized. As new advances come to light on a range of new and old research themes and issues and on previously recorded and new sites, it is an exciting time to be involved in the study of Caddo archaeology

This book presents new advances in the native history of the Caddo Indian peoples, focusing on key sites and several research approaches and themes, among them better ways to understand mortuary practices, ceramic analysis, reconstruction of settlement and regional histories of different Caddo communities, Geographic Information Systems and . . .

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