New publication in the Journal of Cultural Heritage

Analyses of ceramic vessel shape are neither new or novel; however, the relatively recent adoption of geometric morphometric (GM) methods by archaeologists provides a preview of the contribution of GM to the systematic and rigorous study of morphology as applied to material culture. This study is focused upon an analysis of Caddo bottle shapes for Belcher Engraved, Hickory Fine Engraved, Keno Trailed, Smithport Plain, and Taylor Engraved vessels from the Allen Plantation, Belcher Mound, Gahagan Mound, and Smithport Landing sites in the Clarence H. Webb collections from northwest Louisiana. Results indicate some significant relationships between bottle shape and size (allometry), bottle shape and type, and bottle shape and site. A test of morphological integration indicates that the bottles are significantly integrated, meaning that those discrete traits used to characterise their shape (rim, neck, body, and base) vary in a coordinated manner, highlighting significant integration between suites of attributes. The Smithport Plain and Hickory (Fine) Engraved bottles found at the Belcher Mound, Smithport Landing, and Gahagan Mound sites also provide evidence for two discrete (north–south) base and body shapes.

Read the article at the following link, or by clicking on the image below – https://doi.org/10.1016/j.culher.2018.07.002Ceramic morphological organisation in the Southern Caddo Area: T

 

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Robert Z Selden Jr, lithics, stone tools, biface, Gahagan, Gahagan Mound, Caddo, Louisiana, archaeology, archeology, illustration, flake scar, geometric morphometrics, shape, form, allometry, asymmetry

TAS blog post on Gahagan biface shape and new preprint on SocArXiv

A blog post associated with a project that John E. Dockall and I have been working on was recently added to the Texas Archeological Society’s website, and can be viewed here.

Illustrations of Gahagan bifaces from the Gahagan Mound site in Northwest Louisiana. We are now looking at flake scar and beveling morphology associated with Gahagan biface retouch and refurbishment by Caddo knappers.Illustrations of Gahagan bifaces from the Gahagan Mound site in Northwest Louisiana. We are now looking at flake scar and beveling morphology associated with Gahagan biface retouch and refurbishment by Caddo knappers.

The post provides a preview of morphological similarities and differences associated with Gahagan bifaces found in Caddo burial contexts, which are currently thought to have been produced in central Texas. The preprint has been uploaded to SSRN and SocArXiv while the associated article is in review. Links to the SocArXiv preprint and other readings associated with this project are included below.

Preprint of 2019 article:

Selden Jr., Robert Z. and John E. Dockall. 2019. “A Comparison of Gahagan Biface Morphology across Caddo Features at the Gahagan Mound, George C. Davis, and Mounds Plantation Sites.” SocArXiv https://doi.org/10.31235/osf.io/fyw2d

2019 Conference poster:

Selden Jr., Robert Z., John E. Dockall, and Harry J. Shafer. 2019. “Lithic Morphological Organization: Gahagan Bifaces from Texas and Louisiana.” Stephen F. Austin State University, accessed March 1, 2019. https://scholarworks.sfasu.edu/crhr/266/

2018 DAACH article and preprint:

Selden Jr., Robert Z., John E. Dockall, and Harry J. Shafer. 2018. “Lithic Morphological Organisation: Gahagan Bifaces from the Southern Caddo Area.” Digital Applications in Archaeology and Cultural Heritage 10:e00080. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.daach.2018.e00080

Selden Jr., Robert Z., John E. Dockall, and Harry J. Shafer. 2018. “Lithic Morphological Organisation: Gahagan Bifaces from the Southern Caddo Area.” SocArXiv https://doi.org/10.31235/osf.io/u7qfr

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robert z selden jr, geometric morphometrics, ceramics, pottery, shape analysis, geomorph, r, Caddo, American Southeast, archaeology, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jasrep.2018.08.045

Preprint of new JAS: Reports article available on SocArXiv

The geometric morphometric analysis of Hickory Engraved bottles is currently in press at JAS: Reports, and the preprint is available for download on SocArXiv. The follow-up to this piece integrates a new sample of Smithport Plain Caddo bottles, and will be published in Volume 89 of the Bulletin of the Texas Archeological Society. The Hickory Engraved analysis presents an iterative extension of my ongoing work with Caddo ceramic morphology, to which new collections are regularly added. Access the preprint by clicking on the SocArXiv link above, or on the images below.

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Comparison of mean shapes for sites where Hickory Engraved assemblages were found to differ significantly; a, Gahagan Mound (gray) and Belcher Mound; b, Gahagan Mound (gray) and Crenshaw Mound; c, Gahagan Mound (gray) and Haley Place; d, Gahagan Mound (gray) and Paul Mitchell; e, Gahagan Mound (gray) and Pohler Collection; f, Smithport Landing (gray) and Paul Mitchell; and g, Smithport Landing (gray) and Pohler Collection.

This study expands upon a previous analysis of the Clarence H. Webb collection that resulted in the identification of two bottle shapes used in the manufacture of the Hickory Engraved type. The current sample of Caddo bottles adduces three-dimensional meshes from the Hickory Engraved specimens in the Webb collection, and 14 new meshes from six sites and one collection. Results confirm that in some cases Hickory Engraved bottle shapes differ significantly by site, that the two shapes identified in the Webb collection persist in this larger sample, and that morphological integration is not significant, meaning that those traits used to characterise bottle shape (rim, neck, body, and base) were not found to vary in a coordinated manner. Thus, these results do not support the hypothesis that Caddo potters adhered to a template of vessel shape associated with specific decorative motifs. When combined with the Webb sample, iterative improvements are achieved, and results demonstrate a general trend toward standardisation in Caddo bottle shapes through time.

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Comparison of mean bottle shapes by type for those types found to differ significantly in the Hickory Engraved study; (a) Belcher Engraved (gray) and Hickory Engraved, (b) Belcher Engraved (gray) and Keno Trailed, (c) Belcher Engraved (gray) and Smithport Plain, (d) Hickory Engraved (gray) and Keno Trailed, (e) Hickory Engraved (gray) and Smithport Plain, (f) Keno Trailed (gray) and Smithport Plain, (g) Keno Trailed (gray) and Taylor Engraved, and (h) Smithport Plain (gray) and Taylor Engraved.

Funding for this research was provided by the Caddo Nation of Oklahoma and the National Center for Preservation Technology and Training.

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Preprint of New BTAS Article Available on SocArXiv

The preprint of my forthcoming BTAS article that explores morphological variation for a sample of Smithport Plain Caddo bottles is now available for download on SocArXiv. The follow-up to this piece integrates Caddo bottles from the Bison B site in northwest Louisiana curated at Southern Methodist University. This analysis is an iterative extension of my ongoing work with Caddo ceramic morphology, to which new collections are regularly added. Each iterative improvement includes an analysis of the recently scanned ceramics, then presents the results of a subsequent analysis of the aggregated sample.

 

A Preliminary Study of Smithport Plain Bottle Morphology in the

 

Many thanks to the Caddo Nation of Oklahoma, the Williamson Museum at Northwestern State University, the Louisiana State Exhibit Museum, the Texas Archeological Research Laboratory, and the Louisiana State University (LSU) Museum of Natural Science for the requisite permissions and access needed to generate the 3D scans of the Caddo bottles used in this analysis. Development of the analytical workflow and production of 3D scans from the Clarence H. Webb collection was funded by a grant (P14AP00138) from the National Center for Preservation Technology and Training. Production of 3D scans for repatriated Caddo bottles from the Crenshaw Mound and the Pohler Collection was funded by a grant from the Caddo Nation of Oklahoma.

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Archaeology Maxent ENMeval predictive model site potential model

Call for Volunteers–Test of an Archaeological Site Potential Model

The National Forests and Grasslands in Texas and the Center for Regional Heritage Research would like to invite you to participate in a large public archaeology/outreach opportunity from February 18 – March 3, 2018 (two one-week sessions) to test and evaluate an archaeological site potential model for the Davy Crockett National Forest (http://www.passportintime.com/site-testing-on-the-davy-crockett-2018.html). This is a national call for volunteers, and is limited to 40 participants; however, we wanted to open the opportunity to locally-interested colleagues and students in advance of the formal announcement (no prior experience required). Registration is required by January 1, 2018 for all participants through the USFS Passport in Time website. Register by visiting the link above and filling out the short application using the Apply Now tab immediately below the image of the dart points.

Additional information included in the link above.

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