Plains and Mountain Settlement Systems Change During the Earliest Holocene at the Sisters Hill Paleoindian Site (48JO314)
This is an abstract from the "New and Ongoing Research on the North American Plains and Rocky Mountains" session, at the 84th annual meeting of the Society for American Archaeology.
The Sisters Hill Paleoindian site is located between the Bighorn Mountains and the High Plains of the Powder River Basin in northern Wyoming, two regions with largely distinct ecologies and chipped stone raw material sources. Accordingly, the site is an ideal place to research the causes of settlement system shifts between the mountains and plains. Previously known for its Hell Gap component (ca. 11,000 cal BP), recent excavations at Sisters Hill discovered at least two later components, including one associated with the Cody complex (ca. 10,900 cal BP) and one slightly later (ca. 9,500 cal BP). In this study, we compare lithic raw material use and faunal constituents between the three Paleoindian components at Sisters Hill, situate them within a paleoenvironmental context, and discuss changes in Paleoindian plains and mountain settlement systems during the earliest Holocene. We find that the site’s earliest inhabitants made greater use locally-procured resources from the foothills of the Bighorns, while later occupations made greater use of the Powder River Basin interior. The shift from a foothills-mountain to a plains-focused settlement system occurs after significant environmental reorganization between the Hell Gap and Cody occupations and coincides with landscape stabilization characterized by low energy alluvial aggradation.
Cite this Record
Plains and Mountain Settlement Systems Change During the Earliest Holocene at the Sisters Hill Paleoindian Site (48JO314). Cody Newton, Spencer Pelton. Presented at The 84th Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Albuquerque, NM. 2019 ( tDAR id: 452347)
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Abstract Id(s): 23727