Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Projectile Points and Late Prehistoric Obsidian Procurement in the Central Sierra Nevada, California: A View From the Rim Fire Collection
by Kleam, Samantha, M.A., California State University, Fullerton, 2019, 128; 13865060
Abstract (Summary)

A large assemblage of projectile points recovered from the 2013 Rim Fire are studied to evaluate obsidian procurement patterns for the Late Prehistoric to Historic Period Me-Wuk and Washoe of the Sierra Nevada, particularly those who once inhabited what is now the Stanislaus National Forest (SNF). More specifically, this thesis assesses if the Me-Wuk and Washoe chose alternative obsidian procurement patterns after the arrival of outsiders (Europeans and Euroamericans). Two test expectations were developed to assess this issue. The cultural affiliation test expectation considers if the obsidian for Me-Wuk and Washoe projectile points came from different sources due to variations in territory, language, inter-community relationships, and other factors. The time test expectation considers whether the proportion of Me-Wuk and Washoe obsidian projectile points varied through time (Late Prehistoric to Historic) and why.

Addressing the two test expectations necessitated determining the style, raw material type, and cultural affiliation (Me-Wuk and/or Washoe) of the projectile points. I achieved this using the Monitor Valley (Thomas 1981) and Justice (2002) projectile point typologies and Energy Dispersive X-ray Fluorescence (EDXRF) to geochemically source 83 of the obsidian projectile points. The cultural affiliation test expectation was rejected, but the time test expectation revealed that the Me-Wuk and Washoe used significantly less Bodie Hills and Lookout Mountain obsidian during the Protohistoric and Historic periods. Why this occurred is unclear, but some explanations are provided.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Knell, Edward
Commitee: Bowser, Brenda, James, Steven
School: California State University, Fullerton
Department: Anthropology
School Location: United States -- California
Source: MAI 58/06M(E), Masters Abstracts International
Subjects: Archaeology
Keywords: Edxrf, Fire collection, Me-wuk, Obsidian, Sierra nevada, Washoe
Publication Number: 13865060
ISBN: 978-1-392-21471-8
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