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Mississippi Valley Archaeology Center

Archaeology Terms

Kramer Point

March 26, 2020

This isolated point was recovered during a phase I archaeological survey in Mitchell County, Iowa in 2004. This is a Kramer-like point made of Cedar Valley chert. The dimensions of the point are approximately 51.03 mm in length x 24.18…

Bone Needles

March 19, 2020

These two pieces of worked bone have polish and perforations and were probably needle-related implements of some type. The top needle (or perhaps a shuttle?) is a narrow, fairly flat section of long bone from a bird. It has a…

Woodland Pottery – Overhead – Linn Ware

March 12, 2020

This Woodland tradition, Linn Ware vessel was found during the 1983 excavations at the Overhead site south of La Crosse, Wisconsin. The vessel was found in a pottery concentration that had no visible staining or charcoal flecks. The vessel is…

Calf Weaner

March 5, 2020

Several years ago, while walking across our formerly pastured hillside in rural Vernon County, I found this unusual metal object.  It’s rusted and rectangular, measuring 3 by 4.5 inches, and appears to be made of sheet steel. It has two…

Oneota Vessel 83

February 13, 2020

This Oneota sherd displays a variant of the Perrot Punctate motif, consisting of nested chevrons with a circular impression or dimple above them, plus oblique tool-trail panels on either side. This sherd does not have a corresponding rim but is…

Agate Basin – Isolated Find

February 6, 2020

This heat-treated point looks like an Agate Basin point of the Late Paleoindian time period. It does not exhibit basal grinding, but it exhibits beveling which is usually characteristic of the Archaic time period. Therefore the point is assumed to…

Sandstone Pendant

January 30, 2020

This pendant is made of a flat, roughly triangular piece of sandstone. It’s not clear whether the smooth surfaces and rounded edges resulted from grinding or from natural wear, but the edges were clearly notched, and a suspension hole was…

Site Safety

January 23, 2020

Placing trowels and shovels with the sharpened end in the backdirt pile helps prevent injuries and protect the site.

Whiteware – Juvenile Cup

January 16, 2020

This juvenile whiteware cup with blue transfer print was found during the 2006 excavation of an early 1840s–1860s privy in Prairie du Chien, Wisconsin.  The cup shows a boy waving his arms in the air while standing on a railroad…