A Shell of a Journey Into the Crab Orchard Tradition

Dale Tucker

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


My research goal is to test the feasibility of shell being used to create surface im-pressions during Crab Orchard Tradition. Fol lowing a hunch based on field observa-tions, I hypothesized that Crab Orchard Fabric Impressed surface treatments could be replicated with shell and therefore may better be described as shell impressed. My subsequent experiments with shell impressing have resulted in similar surface treatments to Crab Orchard Fabric Impressed and Crab Orchard Plain sherds. Un-like the cordage lost to time, shell artifacts are present at these sites in large quanti-ties. Both riverine and marine shells played important roles in both daily and ritual life of people in the region, as early as the Middle Archaic and well beyond the end of the Crab Orchard Tradition in the Middle Woodland. My research provides an innovative, fresh look at some of the earliest ceramics in the Midwest by employing experimental archaeology with shell.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationMAC 2014 Abstracts
StatePublished - 2014


  • ISAS


Dive into the research topics of 'A Shell of a Journey Into the Crab Orchard Tradition'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this