When and Where Did They Go? More Fully Conceptualizing Fort Ancient’s Descendants

Author(s): Robert Cook

Year: 2018


There were two distinct cultural systems in a key part of the Fort Ancient region – Anderson and Madisonville – with the general understanding that one changed into the other in situ ca. AD 1400 and then left the region en masse ca. AD 1650, becoming one of several contemporary Central Algonquian tribes. However, new data raise the possibility that this interpretation needs revision. First, through a biodistance analysis we learn that at least some Anderson and Madisonville groups were not closely related biologically. Second, we know from oral histories that Dhegiha Siouans departed the Ohio Valley at the same time as the Madisonville shift and have recently learned that the Anderson pattern is very similar to several Dhegiha accounts. Hence, it is now possible to question whether the Anderson cultural system relates to Dhegiha Siouans moreso than the Madisonville one that may be more closely related to Central Algonquians. Reasons explored to account for the potential for multiple departures include various mixes of environmental and cultural push/pull factors, such as deteriorating climatic conditions for agriculture, increased interest in bison, and increased pressures from Iroquoians who were interested in the region for both the burgeoning fur trade and slave raiding.

Cite this Record

When and Where Did They Go? More Fully Conceptualizing Fort Ancient’s Descendants. Robert Cook. Presented at The 82nd Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Washington, DC. 2018 ( tDAR id: 443906)

This Resource is Part of the Following Collections

Spatial Coverage

min long: -103.975; min lat: 36.598 ; max long: -80.42; max lat: 48.922 ;

Record Identifiers

Abstract Id(s): 20424