Year of Award


Document Type


Degree Type

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Degree Name


Department or School/College

Department of Anthropology

Committee Chair

Anna M. Prentiss

Commitee Members

Douglas MacDonald, John Douglas, Chad Bishop, Kirsten Green Mink


Archaeology, Geophysics, Middle Archaic, Mule Deer, Obsidian, Stable Isotopes


University of Montana


This dissertation studies land tenure and resource procurement strategies among Middle Holocene hunter-gatherers in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem (GYE). The research provides a better understanding of a stratified archaeological site on the eastern flank of the Yellowstone Plateau, 48PA551, a crucial location for winter resource procurement. Geophysical survey, collection’s research, obsidian sourcing, and stable isotope analysis are all used to test theoretical models of social conditions and hunting strategies during the harsh winters of the mountainous environment of northwest Wyoming. Site 48PA551 has already proven to contain evidence for a unique Middle Archaic adaptive strategy, being one of the only locations in the GYE where housepits have been discovered in a mountainous environment. Overall, this dissertation seeks to highlight the importance of interdisciplinary approaches in archaeological research. The outcomes of this research can be used to influence and inform other fields of science such as wildlife management and ecology. It is the hope that this dissertation reflects the importance of an interdisciplinary approach and identifies tangible outcomes that can be used in other fields of scientific inquiry.



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