274 pages, 8 3/8 x 10 3/4
131 illus., 2 color plates
Release Date:01 Apr 1999
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House Pits and Middens

A Methodological Study of Site Structure and Formation Processes at CA-ORA-116, Newport Bay, Orange County, California

Statistical Research, Inc.
ORA-116 is one of many coastal shell-midden sites in and around Newport Bay, a large, complex wetlands in southern California. Whereas shell-midden studies have traditionally focused on changes in subsistence and settlement patterns, this project took a decidedly different approach. Using a variety of innovative detection measures, eleven structures were identified and excavated. Most were interpreted as house pits; one was inferred to be a sweat lodge. The structures dated between about 300 B.C. and A.D. 700, placing the occupation within the Intermediate period. The archaeological study was augmented by pollen and ostracod analysis of a 1,081-cm core taken from the nearby San Joaquin Marsh, which helped establish the Holocene history of Newport Bay. The authors integrate archaeological, ethnographic, and environmental data in a comprehensive settlement and subsistence model that is sure to be of interest to all scholars of coastal wetlands adaptation.
Jeffrey H. Altschul is President of Statistical Research, Inc. in Tucson, Arizona
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