Feeling the Elephant: Early Maritime Woodland Components from South Central New Brunswick
Type de publication:Conference Paper
Résumé (en anglais):
Recent research in the Maritime Peninsula has begun to weave together a coherent sequence that extends through most of the Holocene. However, the period from 3100 to 2200 years ago (the Early Maritime Woodland period) remains poorly understood, and has been represented primarily by chronologically suggestive surface finds, unique mortuary sites, and very few, small habitation sites. In New Brunswick, these finds have suggested broad macroregional linkages with complexes in Great Lakes basin and the central US, including such nebulous archaeological entities as 'Meadowood', 'Adena', and 'Middlesex'. This speculation has led some to characterize Early Woodland research as the proverbial blind men describing an elephant. To the one handling the trunk it is like a snake; to the one handling the leg it is like a tree, and to the one handling the tail it is like a stick... While this period remains enigmatic, recent excavations of sites in the Maritime Peninsula have presented researchers with new opportunities. The Jemseg Crossing site in south central New Brunswick affords one such opportunity. A partial mitigation of this site produced over 50 habitation features, most of which date to between 3100 and 2000 years ago. Preliminary analysis suggest that three phases can be distinguished within this period: a small early aceramic component (ca. 3100 to 2800 bp), a middle component (ca. 2800 to 2400 bp), reminiscent of Great Lakes Early Woodland complexes, and a late component (ca. 2400 to 2000 bp) showing local elaboration. This paper will describe the material from these periods and discuss changes and continuities in the patterning of technology, raw material procurement and settlement with an eye to developing a local framework and integrating it into a larger regional setting.