A Characterization of Site Formation Processes at FxJj34, Northen Kenya


This is an abstract from the "SAA 2019: General Sessions" session, at the 84th annual meeting of the Society for American Archaeology.

Any inference of behavior based upon the spatial distribution of archaeological material requires an understanding of site formation processes. Natural agents, such as water flow, may be responsible for post-depositional alteration of buried materials and can result in spatial patterns which mask the behavioral processes associated with the initial deposition of artifacts. FxJj34 is located in Area 129 within the Okote Member (1.56-1.39mya) of the Koobi Fora Formation in Northern Kenya. Excavations revealed dense accumulations of artifacts (50 artifacts/m2), confined to a horizon of coarse sands. Excavated lithics exhibit variable degrees of rounding, suggesting that FxJj34 is not representative of its primary depositional context. This study investigates the impact of such formative agents in the depositional history of material at FxJj34 through a series of geoarchaeological proxies that provide insight into site formation processes. This includes regional- and site-based sedimentation sequences, artifact and material sorting, orientation analysis, and artifact rounding. While the results of orientation analysis do not support post-depositional displacement of artifacts, results of geoarchaeological proxies suggest that water acted as an agent in the formation of FxJj34. These results demonstrate the nuanced relationship between the anthropogenic agents and the geological processes that form the archaeological record.

Cite this Record

A Characterization of Site Formation Processes at FxJj34, Northen Kenya. Elena Skosey-LaLonde, Jonathan Reeves, Matt Douglass, David Braun, Emmanuel Ndiema. Presented at The 84th Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Albuquerque, NM. 2019 ( tDAR id: 449546)

This Resource is Part of the Following Collections

Spatial Coverage

min long: 24.082; min lat: -26.746 ; max long: 56.777; max lat: 17.309 ;

Record Identifiers

Abstract Id(s): 24509