A Comparison of Two Bluff Top Prehistoric Sites at Fort Riley, Kansas

Author(s): Bretton Giles; Eric Skov; Shannon Koerner

Year: 2017


We compare two sites (14RY3180 and 14RY3184), located on the bluffs above the Kansas River valley on the Fort Riley Military Installation. We examine how these sites were initially interpreted and reassess their significance. This reassessment is based on recent field work at 14RY3184, while our insights about 14RY3180 derive from a reexamination of its lithic assemblage and a new AMS date. We demonstrate through this comparison that 14RY3180 and 14RY3184 were used for different activities, even though they are located nearby one another in similar physiographic settings. For example, 14RY3184 is associated with outcrops of tabular chert that occur along the bluff edge; while the site is a lithic scatter composed of several loci of early stage core reduction. Alternately, 14RY3180 was probably a Smoky Hill camp, given the presence of an assortment of lithic tools, dense lithic debitage, a potsherd, and animal bones. Yet it is also possible that Smoky Hill peoples collected chert from outcrops adjacent to 14RY3180 and that early stage reduction might have occurred there, since the 1990s excavations primarily focused on the central site area. Our comparison illustrates the variability of upland sites at Fort Riley and their research value.

Cite this Record

A Comparison of Two Bluff Top Prehistoric Sites at Fort Riley, Kansas. Bretton Giles, Eric Skov, Shannon Koerner. Presented at The 81st Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Vancouver, British Columbia. 2017 ( tDAR id: 430655)

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Spatial Coverage

min long: -113.95; min lat: 30.751 ; max long: -97.163; max lat: 48.865 ;

Record Identifiers

Abstract Id(s): 15098