The sharp, jagged rocks, lack of shade, and unrelenting exposure to sun and wind make the Little Springs lava flow a difficult place for human use and habitation. Yet, the flow and the surrounding area teem with evidence of a human presence of more than 2,000 years. Who were these people? What were they doing at Little Springs? Can the artifacts and structures created 1,000 years ago help archaeologists to understand how prehistoric people reacted to and lived with a volcanically active landscape? In this thesis, I set out to answer these questions by examining survey data, examining GIS data, and consulting archaeological, ethnographic, and contemporary accounts of human reaction to volcanic phenomena.
This thesis provides a case study for understanding human adaptation to volcanically changed landscapes and uses of volcanic landforms by examining the human use of the Little Springs lava flow in northwestern Arizona. The importance of the archaeological study of the Little Springs lava flow lies in the unique nature of the prehistoric occupation, helping to expand the understanding of different land-use and settlement strategies in the field of greater Southwestern archaeology and the study of the relationships of humans with environmental hazards the world over.
|Advisor:||Downum, Christian E.|
|Commitee:||Smiley, Francis E., IV, Vannette, Walter M.|
|School:||Northern Arizona University|
|School Location:||United States -- Arizona|
|Source:||MAI 50/06M, Masters Abstracts International|
|Subjects:||Archaeology, Native American studies|
|Keywords:||Arizona Strip, Lava flow, Virgin Anasazi|
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