Paleoamerican Odyssey

By Kelly E. Graf; Caroline V. Ketron et al. | Go to book overview

Chapter 17
Clovis-era Subsistence:
Regional Variability,
Continental Patterning

Gary Haynes1 and Jarod M. Hutson2

ABSTRACT

Clovis-era subsistence varied from site to site and region to region, but large mammals numerically domi-
nate at archaeological sites with food remains. Plant remains are extremely scarce in Clovis sites. The lack of
specialized processing and storage technology suggests seeds and nuts were not prominent in the diet, as
they became in later times. Sites dated to a possible proto-Clovis phase, 1,000–3,000 years older than the
generally accepted age of Clovis, also contain mostly or exclusively large-mammal remains. Many (perhaps
most or all) of the largest animals were probably killed and butchered by Late Glacial foragers; they were
not found dead and scavenged by people. Proboscidean carcass utilization by Clovis butchers was often
incomplete, because Clovis foraging bands were small in number, very mobile, and most likely could predict
where to find vulnerable prey.

KEYWORDS: Clovis subsistence, Late Glacial, large mammals


Introduction

In this paper we summarize the evidence about Clovis-era subsistence. We also refer to other sites dated earlier than the fairly narrow Clovis interval proposed by Waters and Stafford (2007; see Haynes et al. 2007 for disagreement), thereby stretching out the time span to include what we designate a proto-Clovis period (as suggested by Haynes 2002:253 and Ferring 2012). We examine data for North America south of the continental ice sheets, leaving aside Alaskan fluted-point assemblages, because the far northern fluted points may be significantly younger than those in the lower 48 states (Goebel 2011; Graf et al. 2011; Keene et al. 2009). Clovis or Clovis-like fluted bifaces have been found in Central and South America, but their chronostratigraphic contexts and associations are less clear than in the United States. Our sample includes one site from northern Mexico that was recently discovered and excavated, but no others south of the USA-Mexico border. Our focus is on the animal and plant foods that people procured or processed just before and during the Clovis era. By necessity we examine only mammals. The evidence about human use of birds, reptiles, amphibians, fish, and invertebrates is extremely slim. Only five sites with adequate evidence that humans utilized such animals are listed in Cannon and Meltzer (2004); these should be closely examined in future studies of the Clovis era.


Research History

The first speculations about a preferred Clovis-era diet began with the earliest discoveries of associated animal bones and fluted projectile points, specifically Dent, CO (Bilgery 1935, as cited in C. V. Haynes et al. 1998 and Saunders 2007; Figgins 1933), Blackwater Draw, NM, and Miami, TX (Sellards 1938, 1952). At the time, these finds hinted that big-game animals were the major part of the diet. Some archaeologists chal-

1,2 Department of Anthropology, University of Nevada-Reno,

Reno, Nevada 89557

Corresponding author e-mail:1gahaynes@unr.edu

-293-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Note: primary sources have slightly different requirements for citation. Please see these guidelines for more information.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
Paleoamerican Odyssey
Table of contents

Table of contents

Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
Items saved from this book
  • Bookmarks
  • Highlights & Notes
  • Citations
/ 574

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Search by... Author
    Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.