NC State UniversityAchae Interactive

Directions

In this assignment you are presented with a set of data from the Coyote Wash Pueblo, a hypothetical Anasazi site from the American Southwest. Based on your extensive archaeological experience it appears that the pueblo was constructed and occupied sometime during the Pueblo III period, between A.D. 1100 and 1300.

The site was reasonably well excavated, and all excavated dirt was screened through a 1/4 inch mesh. The deposits are categorized as follows:

Pottery types: corrugated; black on white (B/W); polychrome.

The pueblo had only one story and rooms showed evidence of only a single floor. All radiocarbon and tree-ring dates are calibrated dates and expressed as dates A.D. Numbers in parentheses indicate the number of multiple samples with the same date.

Questions

Answer the following questions, drawing upon the evidence presented in the site plan and the attached room data. The most important part of every answer is the justification in terms of the relevant evidence and principles of archaeological inference. Good graphical displays of data using Microsoft Excel, for example (e.g., color coding and labels), will both aid and shorten your written presentation -- use them generously.

Format: your assignment must be typed, double-spaced, with 1" margins and 12 point Times New Roman font. For each aspect of formatting not followed, you will lose 2 points.

  1. Reconstruct the relative chronology of the construction and expansion of the pueblo. Using the information on the site plan (e.g., architecture, wall alignments, presence of subfloor deposits) identify the set of rooms first constructed. Next, determine the blocks of rooms that were apparently added to the initial construction, and the sequence in which they were added. This question is probably most easily answered using a figure that indicates the room blocks and the sequence of construction, accompanied by a written justification.
  2. Using the tree-ring and radiocarbon dates, offer your best interpretation of the absolute dates associated with each construction phase or room addition. You may find a graphical approach useful in your analysis, again accompanied by a written justification.
  3. How do you interpret the differences in the total number of pottery sherds found on the floor's surface in each room versus the sherds found in excavation (i.e., total fill sherds)?