An Analysis of the Polvorón Phase Lithic Assemblage from the Mesa Grande Platform Mound in the Phoenix Basin

Summary

This is an abstract from the "WHY PLATFORM MOUNDS? PART 1: MOUND DEVELOPMENT AND CASE STUDIES" session, at the 84th annual meeting of the Society for American Archaeology.

The Polvorón phase (ca. A.D. 1350–1500), which occurred after the Hohokam Classic Period, was a time of cultural paradigm shifts. There are cultural continuities with the preceding Civano phase, like the use of Salado Polychromes, but people during the Polvorón practiced different cultural traditions, most notably the construction of jacal-like pithouses through compound architecture, and the cessation of large-scale canal irrigation in favor of a mix of small-scale agricultural production and wild resource procurement. Recent excavations at Mesa Grande allow for a renewed effort to understand this understudied phase in the Hohokam cultural sequence. Here, we investigate if the Polvorón phase occupants migrated into the area when the platform mound at Mesa Grande fell into disuse. To assess where they came from, we performed formal and metrical analysis on the chipped stone assemblage, including an EDXRF analysis of the obsidian. Based on these data, we suggest that although the Polvorón phase occupants may have come from outside the region, the obsidian comes from sources that were previously used during the Civano phase like Sauceda Mountains and Los Vidrios. Therefore, while there is discontinuity in Hohokam material culture during the Polvorón, there was also continuity.

Cite this Record

An Analysis of the Polvorón Phase Lithic Assemblage from the Mesa Grande Platform Mound in the Phoenix Basin. Derek Miltimore, Christopher R. Caseldine, Sean G. Dolan. Presented at The 84th Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Albuquerque, NM. 2019 ( tDAR id: 451626)

Spatial Coverage

min long: -124.365; min lat: 25.958 ; max long: -93.428; max lat: 41.902 ;

Record Identifiers

Abstract Id(s): 24553