Analyzing Wood-use Behavior at Wupatki Pueblo

Author(s): Garrett Briggs

Year: 2017


Wupatki Pueblo is one of the best known pre-Hispanic settlements in northern Arizona. Unfortunately, very few excavation reports exist and only a couple of successful dendrochronological analyses have been published. Through a reexamination of wooden construction elements, legacy data from previous publications, and unpublished field notes, stored at the Laboratory of Tree-ring Research, this paper presents the results of the first wood-use behavior analysis at Wupatki Pueblo. The use of a holistic methodology (i.e. the use of statistical analyses and Exploratory Data Analyses) revealed that tree type allocation and consumption, particularly the utilization of both high and low elevation conifers, maintained throughout the construction sequence at the pueblo. Through the combination of modern and post-modern indigenous theories and analogical models (predicated upon wood-use behaviors displayed among one of the primary descendent communities), wood-use behavior at Wupatki Pueblo is interpreted as an example of learned behavior through enculturation, guided by a shared cultural system of meaning based in ritual. The emphasis of this paper is not only on the results of this analysis, but also on the importance of considering both the culturally defined and scientifically explained contexts when interpreting wood-use behavior.

Cite this Record

Analyzing Wood-use Behavior at Wupatki Pueblo. Garrett Briggs. Presented at The 81st Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Vancouver, British Columbia. 2017 ( tDAR id: 431762)

Spatial Coverage

min long: -115.532; min lat: 30.676 ; max long: -102.349; max lat: 42.033 ;

Record Identifiers

Abstract Id(s): 16087