The SIUE Anthropology Department conducted an archaeological field school in Hamel Township, Madison County, Illinois, in 2006. Investigations included excavation at 11MS1124-the D. Hitchens site-because of an interest in Mississippian use of the area. However, features were excavated dating to early Late Woodland as well as early Mississippian periods. Early Late Woodland features indicate use of the site for nut harvesting and processing. Early Mississippian features contained maize, seeds of native cultigens, and nutshell, and are believed to represent a small camp used to shelter people engaged in agricultural tasks. The contrast in plant remains between these two time periods suggests environmental changes were caused by Mississippian agriculture, although this contrast could simply be a result of sampling bias. It is hypothesized that the maize and game harvested at the beginning of the Mississippian period were largely consumed elsewhere, most likely at Cahokia itself.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Journal||Illinois Archaeology: Journal of the Illinois Archaeology Survey|
|State||Published - 2011|