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Mississippi Valley Archaeology Center

Archaeology Terms

Anomalous Globular Vessel – Sunburst

September 13, 2018

This unusual pot sherd was recovered in the early 2000s at the Sanford Archaeological District in La Crosse, Wisconsin. This portion of a shoulder has a small, circular impression with a fine tool trail encircling it. Small linear punctates radiate…

Rockshelter

August 30, 2018

Rockshelters are shallow caves or shelters exposed in hillsides. Native peoples often used such places for winter camping because they provided shelter and protection from the wind and cold. Sites such as Raddatz Rockshelter and Preston Rockshelter in southwestern Wisconsin…

Woodland Points

August 23, 2018

Forty-four projectile points were recovered during the 2008 excavations at the Sand Lake Archaeological District, located north of La Crosse, Wisconsin. Seven of the points are relatively large straight or contracting stemmed forms that conform typologically with Early Woodland Kramer…

Cow Skull

August 9, 2018

This cow skull was recovered during the 2006 excavation of an early 1840s–1860s privy in Prairie du Chien, Wisconsin. Domestic animal bones in the privy represent swine, cattle, sheep, dog, house cat, chicken, and indeterminate mammals and birds.  Swine are predominant. …

Flute

July 26, 2018

A flute is a long thin flake removed from the base of a projectile point.  Pictured is a Folsom spear point, which has the flute extending nearly to the tip. The slightly older Clovis point has a flute that extends…

Pipestone Bear

July 12, 2018

This red pipestone animal effigy closely resembles a bear. Two ears, a stub tail and legs with feet have been carved. The head has a forehead and outlines of the eyes and snout, along with a slit carved for the…

Catlinite Bear

July 12, 2018

This red pipestone animal effigy closely resembles a bear. Two ears, a stub tail and legs with feet have been carved. The head has a forehead and outlines of the eyes and snout, along with a slit carved for the…

Redware Preserve Jar

July 5, 2018

One almost complete redware preserve jar was recovered during the 2006 excavation of an early 1830s into the 1840s privy in Prairie du Chien, Wisconsin. It was found in several pieces but was reconstructed to form a vessel about 8½…