Publications in Salvage Archeology, 13: The Grand Detour Phase


This report in an outgrowth of activities of the Inter-agency Archeological and Paleontological Salvage Program. Since the program's inception in 1945, it has been sponsored, administered, and funded by the National Park Service, Department of the Interior. The National Park Service, following an agreement with the Smithsonian Institution in 1945 (revised 1961, 1965 ), assumed responsibility for over-all programing, funding, and administration. The Smithsonian Institution acts in a dual capacity: as adviser to the National Park Service in the planning and programing stages; and as the major cooperating agency in salvage operations and the publication of archeological research. The program has had the support and cooperation of many individuals and institutions. State, local, and private agencies have frequently contributed generously of their time, personnel, and funds.

The early village sites in the Big Bend country are relatively few in number. In general, they are compact settlements with a varying arrangement of houses and several distinctive systems of defensive fortifications. It was hoped that work here would 1) amplify the relationships between the several defined complexes; 2) provide some understanding of the scanty distribution of the early village sites and the apparent variability of village pattern and defensive systems; and 3) to relate the early villages to the local and regional environment and to investigate the effects of known or inferred climatic changes upon village life. The three archeological sites described below seemed ideally suited to our purposes. They are part of a notable concentration of sites in the vicinity of the Grand Detour, a remarkable horseshoe-shaped loop of the Missouri forming the downstream limit of the Big Bend section of the river (Fig. 1). The sites chosen for excavation, Jiggs Thompson (39LM208), Langdeau (39LM209), and Pretty Head (39 LM232) were the principal early village occupations in the area and varied considerably in village plan and other surface features. The Pretty Head Site was about 20 miles upstream from the Swanson village (39BR16) and preliminary testing during the 1956 reconnaissance of the Big Bend Reservoir indicated the presence of an occupation akin to that of Over Focus sites. It was hoped that exploration of the Big Bend sites would provide a transition to the more northerly Monroe and Anderson foci. The Langdeau and Jiggs Thompson sites are upstream from the Pretty Head village, 10 and 24 miles respectively; the direct airline distance is much less (7 and 10 miles).

Cite this Record

Publications in Salvage Archeology, 13: The Grand Detour Phase. Warren W. (Warren Wendell) Caldwell, Richard E. Jensen, Jerome E. Petsche, Richard B. Johnston. Publications in salvage archeology ,13. Lincoln, Neb: Smithsonian Institution. 1969 ( tDAR id: 81459) ; doi:10.6067/XCV83B611T

This Resource is Part of the Following Collections

Spatial Coverage

min long: -99.886; min lat: 44.014 ; max long: -99.332; max lat: 44.287 ;

Individual & Institutional Roles

Sponsor(s): Smithsonian Institution

Record Identifiers

Publications in Salvage Archeology(s): 13

ddc(s): 917.83 / 2

lccn(s): 71603782

NADB document id number(s): 2015334; 5190780

lcc(s): F657.L37 C3

NADB citation id number(s): 000000161386; 000000240096; 000000163446


General Note: Bibliography: p. 94-95.

General Note: Ubelaker, Doug H.

General Note: Bass, William M.

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