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2022 Annual Meeting of the NDAA

Updated: Mar 30, 2022

We’re excited to announce the upcoming NDAA Annual Spring Meeting will take place on Saturday, April 30th, 2022 at the North Dakota Heritage Center & State Museum in Bismarck, North Dakota using a hybrid online/in-person format. #NDArchaeologicalAssociation2022

Where: North Dakota Heritage Center & State Museum, Bismarck

When: Saturday, April 30, 2022. 12:30pm-4:00pm (central time)


Doors to the room will open at Noon.

12:30 – Welcome

12:40 – Business Meeting NDAA Officer Reports Cynthia Kordecki Scholarship Committee Report

1:10 - 4:00 – Featured Speakers

1:10 pm — Lipid Residue Analysis of Pottery Fragments Recovered from the Arikara Village of Greenshield Kevin L. Braun and Noelle Heilpern, Virginia Military Institute

The Greenshield site (32OL17), situated above the Missouri River on a high Pleistocene terrace near the modern city of Washburn, was the earliest and northernmost documented 18th-century Arikara village in North Dakota. Occupied previously by the Mandans and the Arikara from 1795 to 1798, the earthlodge village site provides insight into a poorly documented period of postcontact Arikara culture. The most extensive Greenshield survey was conducted in 1929 by Alfred Bowers. Since Bowser never published a critical analysis of the excavation and the recovered artifacts, the site’s potential to provide insight on postcontact Arikara cultural change has never been realized. In collaboration with archaeologist Dr. William Green, our work has sought to shed new light on this important Arikara site through lipid residue analysis conducted on recovered pottery fragments. Specifically, we seek to determine if increased European contact during the Arikara’s occupation of the Greenshield site led to decreased dietary diversity. Unglazed ceramics provide an exceptional repository for fats and oils, which accrue within the porous matrix during cooking, food processing, commodity storage, or ceremonial applications. Since plant and animal species synthesize fats and oils using a unique combination of fatty acids, these molecules serve as unique biomarkers that can provide insight into possible usage patterns of the original ceramic item and enable the reconstruction of cultural and economic practices and regional technologies. In this talk, we will describe our novel lipid residue analysis method and present our latest findings on the postcontact Arikara village of Greenshield.

2:05 pm — The Dispersal of Dogs in North America Ariane Thomas, University of Iowa

Domesticated dogs accompanied humans during their earliest migrations to North America and, after their arrival, dispersed widely throughout the continent. However, few studies have examined the nature of this dispersal and how regional cultural traditions may also play significant roles in shaping the genetics, morphologies, and diets of dogs. In this presentation, we explore the temporal, geographic, and cultural influence on the biology of dogs from the Midwest and Atlantic regions of North America. Our analyses show that dog variation is molded by a complicated history of expansion and intercultural connections that coincide with their roles in human society. Future genetic work on dogs from these regions will provide greater resolution into the use and movements of North American dog populations.

3:00 pm— Small Village or Special Use Site? Initial Results of the 2021 PCRG-SHSND Field Investigation at Harmon Village Mark D. Mitchell, Paleocultural Research Group

Harmon Village is a Plains Village site located on the right bank of the Missouri River roughly 15 km north of Mandan, North Dakota. Lidar and magnetic data collected during 2019 suggest that the site—which has a commanding view of the river’s floodplain—consists of about a dozen earthlodges encircled by a bastioned fortification. Material culture obtained during a 2021 testing project carried out by Paleocultural Research Group and the State Historical Society of North Dakota demonstrate that a single component dated to the mid-1700s is present at the site. Excavation also revealed a unique artifact assemblage unlike any other previously obtained from a Plains Village site in the Heart River region. A primary focus of subsequent analyses will be to determine whether Harmon Village was a small village that was under construction at the time of its abandonment or an intermittently occupied special purpose site.

Please make plans to join us – online or in-person!

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