Papers in Honour of David W. Black - B

Session Hosting Format: 
in-person session
Saturday, May 6, 2023 - 9:00am to 12:00pm
Kluskap C (Hybrid)
  • Gabriel Hrynick, University of New Brunswick
  • Matthew Betts, Canadian Museum of History
  • Kenneth Holyoke, University of Lethbridge
Contact Email: 
Session Description (300 word max): 

Over the last four decades, David Black has advanced the archaeological understanding of the Maritime Peninsula through fieldwork, research, and writing, mostly focused around the Quoddy Region. At the same time, he was a prodigious teacher, supervisor and mentor to generations of northeastern archaeologists. In this session, we celebrate David’s accomplishments on the occasion of his recent retirement with a series of research papers from his colleagues, students, and friends. We particularly invite papers with a regional focus on the Maritime Peninsula, a topical emphasis on coastal archaeology, or that engage with other of David’s interests, such as collaboration with avocational archaeologists, geoarchaeology, and zooarchaeology. 

09:00 AM: Dispatches of Stone from the Far West of the Maritime Peninsula: Investigating Red Chert Quarries in the Munsungun Lake Formation, Maine
Presentation format: In-Person
  • Nathaniel Kitchel - Dartmouth College
  • Heather Rockwell - Salve Regina University

Red chert from the Munsungun Lake Formation Northern Maine, is among the most readily identifiable lithic raw materials in the western Maritime Peninsula. The identification of Munsungun chert has provided important insights into how ancient Indigenous populations interacted with their environments, landscapes, and each other, especially during the terminal Pleistocene. Despite the demonstrated importance of this distinctive toolstone, a quarry local for this material has only recently been identified by archaeologists. Further, although the presence of red Munsungun chert during the fluted-point-period has received considerable attention, its absence in the Early Holocene toolstone assemblages is less extensively explored. Here I present the results of recent survey and excavations at the only currently known red chert quarry within the Munsungun Lake Formation. I will then discuss what the absence of red Munsugnun chert in Early Holocene archaeological sites may indicate about social change in the far Northeast at the end of the Ice Age.

09:20 AM: The New Brunswick Bibliography Project: using bibliography to analyze knowldge production trends in the region
Presentation format: In-Person
  • Trevor Dow - University of New Brunswick

The New Brunswick Archaeological Bibliography Project is an effort to catalogue published sources about New Brunswick archaeology for the New Brunswick Bibliographies Series (NBBS). The NBBS is a collaboration between the University of New Brunswick (UNB) Libraries and Gaspereau Press that aspires to support New Brunswick studies by focusing attention on the province’s published heritage. In the spirit of the series, our bibliography highlights research emphases and gaps that offer direction for future research. The bibliography collates several previously published bibliographies and includes hundreds of updated and new references, never previously published together before. The bibliography also reflects trends in the dissemination of New Brunswick research through time and quantifies changes in the way the profession has been practiced in the province. In this paper, we use the bibliography as a tool to explore these trends and consider their possible implications on policy, legislation, and future research in the region.

09:40 AM: Shellfish, fish, and small finds: what column and bulk sampling can (and cannot) tell us about Ancestral Wabanaki lifeways in Cobscook Bay, Maine.
Presentation format: In-Person
  • A. Katherine Patton - University of Toronto
  • Arthur Anderson - University of New England
  • Matthew  Betts - Canadian Museum of History
  • M. Gabriel Hrynick - University of New Brunswick
  • W. Jesse  Webb - Independent Heritage Consultant

David Black was one of the first archaeologists in the Quoddy Region to systematically collect column samples in order to quantify shellfish. Since that time, column and bulk sampling of shell-bearing archaeological sites has become standard in the Maine-Maritimes region as it has in many other regions of the world. In this presentation, we present column and bulk sample results from 6 shell-bearing archaeological sites in the Cobscook Bay area, Maine. We present preliminary shellfish, fish, and small finds results, comparing them with expectations drawn from excavation and field screening. We also compare experiences and results from wet and dry screening protocols and discuss the benefits and limitations of column and bulk sampling strategies.


10:00 AM: Indigenous Human Images from the Maritime Peninsula: Precontact to 1850
Presentation format: In-Person
  • Michael Deal - Memorial University
  • Bryn Tapper - Memorial University

Indigenous peoples of the Maritime Peninsula have been creating human images since at least the Late Archaic Period. These appear incised in stone, carved in bone and wood, and drawn or painted on birchbark. Human images are complex forms to study, as they involve considerations of process (media, technique, aesthetic), miniaturization, partibility, gender, attitude (gesture, posture), appearance (dress, adornments), agency and personhood, function (ritual or secular), power or magic, performance (healing or ritual), enchainment, context, and residue. In this paper we review known examples of human images from the region, how they are interpreted, and their relative chronology. Image forms over time are believed to reflect subtle sociocultural and economic changes, and contacts with other Indigenous and non-Indigenous cultures.