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Prehistoric Village Cultures of Southern Minnesota

Posted by Ehme     Date:

PlainsVillageFINAL2 print Prehistoric Village Cultures of Southern Minnesota

George Holley and Michael Michlovic, both of Minnesota State University Moorhead, recently completed a survey of the late prehistoric ceramics of southern and western Minnesota.  The Prehistoric Village Cultures of Southern Minnesota is the first focused assessment of prehistoric ceramics in this part of Minnesota in over 30 years.  PV greatoasis Prehistoric Village Cultures of Southern MinnesotaPottery is the main tool archeologists use in identifying or recognizing Woodland and later cultures in Minnesota.  As archaeologists our understanding and interpretation of the ceramic sequences in Minnesota have changed, but our professional literature has not kept up with our current knowledge.   This is the second Legacy Amendment funded project to focus on Minnesota prehistoric pottery.  The Age of Brainerd Ceramics completed last PV cambria Prehistoric Village Cultures of Southern Minnesotayear focused on Brainerd Ware a type of pottery found in north-central Minnesota.  A third study is currently underway focusing on sequencing the Woodland pottery of west-central Minnesota.  Beyond just characterizing the pottery Holley and Michlovic look at the interaction between the plains and woodland cultures discussing their influence on this region.  The heavily illustrated report can be found on the Minnesota Office of the State Archaeologist web site (here).

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New County Survey Reports

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SteeleCo New County Survey Reports

McLeod Cover New County Survey Reports

The Minnesota Office of the State Archaeologist has just posted public versions of two new County survey reports on its web site.  These surveys were completed for McLeod (click here) and Steele (click here) Counties in Minnesota.  The McLeod County Survey was completed by archaeologists from Bolton & Menk, Inc. and the Steele County Survey by 10,000 Lakes Archaeology, Inc.  Both projects were supported by Funds from the Clean Water Land and Legacy Amendment.  These counties were chosen for surveySteeleCoPP New County Survey Reports based on the limited number of previously recorded archaeological sites within their boundaries, their environmental settings, and while still mainly rural in character both have seen increasing development.  These SteeleCoPP2 New County Survey Reportssurveys will enable public officials to better manage cultural resources and will help to educate the public and professionals alike about the prehistory of these Counties and the region.

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Lake Minnetonka Nautical Archaeology

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Pages from MHM 2013 Lake Minnetonka report Lake Minnetonka Nautical ArchaeologyIf you’ve ever wondered what is at the bottom of one of our metropolitan lakes this report will give you a glimpse of what’s down there.  Maritime Heritage Minnesota staff and volunteers donned SCUBA gear to check out some of the anomalies they located during a 2011 – 2012 side and down-imaging sonar survey of Lake Minnetonka.  Objects included a turn of the century barge, a stolen then scuttled aluminum fishing boat, a motorized ice boat and a 1955 Mercury Monterey four door sedan, among others.  Some of the anomalies turned out to be natural features including a sunken section of once floating bog and rock piles.  While most survey reports can be rather uninteresting to browse this one reads more like an issue of National Geographic with lots of pictures and interesting commentary.  Check it out here.

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Red Lake County Archaeology

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Red Lake County Report Final Draft 1 Red Lake County ArchaeologyThe Office of the State Archaeologist (OSA) has posted a public version of a report completed by the Archaeology Laboratory of Augustana College on the archaeology of Red Lake County, Minnesota.  The primary objective of the study was to expand the breadth of collective knowledge concerning the location and character of archaeological sites in Red Lake County.  The survey documented 24 previously unrecorded sites and revisited 9 previously recorded/reported sites in the county.  Prior to the survey there were 8 recorded sites in the OSA sites inventory.   Local artifact collectors were interviewed and their collections documented.  The study was also augmented by a geomorphological investigation.  The county survey was funded by the Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund of the Minnesota Clean Water, Land and Legacy Amendment as part of the Statewide Survey of Historical and Archaeological Sites.  Here is a link to the report.   It is a 9 MB file so it might take a while to download.

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Mandan and Arikara Pottery

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Mandan 8704910383 d56daa2edb c Mandan and Arikara Pottery

While working on his publication A Chronology of Middle Missouri Plains Village Sites, Smithsonian Contributions to Archaeology Volume 47 (2007) Craig Johnson created a type collection of Mandan and Arikara pottery.  The pottery type collection that Craig compiled was photographed and the entire picture set is now available on Flicker for researchers.  Here is a link to a blog entry introducing the type collection   and here is the link to the collection on Flickr.  Johnson’s publication goes into great detail about ceramic classification in Middle Missouri sites, and includes photos of different rim types, as well as discussion and interpretation of the distribution of the types across sites and time-periods, using a variety of dating techniques.  The volume is available as a PDF and can be downloaded at this link. It is great to see a Minnesota archaeologist making significant contributions to our understanding of the past!

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OSA Annual Report

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The Office of the State Archaeologist (OSA) has posted a copy of its latest annual report.   For a summary of all things archaeological in Minnesota check it out at this link.

2012ArchaeologyAnnualReport cover web OSA Annual Report