The Neolithic Transition in Northern Iroquoia

Author(s): Dean Snow

Year: 2015


While details remain debated, the general outline of the emergence of semi-permanent sedentary domestic architecture in Northern Iroquoia is well understood. Communities comprised of bark longhouses came to be associated with subsistence maize horticulture over the course of the last millennium prior to European contact. Various factors triggered periodic community relocations throughout Northern Iroquoia, migratory events that were usually short-distance but occasionally involved long-distance moves. Migration is known to promote and reinforce matrilocality and matrilineality in communities, but there appear to be examples in other regions of these institutions thriving in the absence of migration. This raises the general question of how securely archaeologists can infer such social institutions from settlement patterns and other evidence used for inferring paleodemography. The potentials (and their limits) of contributions from Northern Iroquoian archaeology to more general research into paleodemography and the Neolithic Transition are discussed.

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Cite this Record

The Neolithic Transition in Northern Iroquoia. Dean Snow. Presented at The 80th Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, San Francisco, California. 2015 ( tDAR id: 395498)


Spatial Coverage

min long: -80.815; min lat: 39.3 ; max long: -66.753; max lat: 47.398 ;