Contextualizing flint clay Cahokia figures at the East St. Louis Mound Center

Thomas E. Emerson, Steven L. Boles

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

An intact Cahokia figurine and a fragmentary portion of a Cahokia figure/block pipe manufactured from the local St. Louis flint clay were recovered during ongoing excavations at the East St. Louis Mound Center and provide an opportunity to reexamine the context of American Bottom Cahokia figures. The figure, known as the Exchange Avenue figurine, was recovered from what appears to be a Stirling phase temple on the northern edge of the mound center. It represents a classic female figure of the type that are a major icon in Cahokian religious belief. The Stockyard Head pipe fragment was found in a possible high-status dwelling in a Stirling phase compound close to the mound center's ceremonial precinct. The recovery of flint clay objects supports previous observations on the rarity of flint clay, the association of female figures with temple contexts, and the presence of other flint clay objects in high-status contexts.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)473--490
JournalIllinois Archaeology: Journal of the Illinois Archaeology Survey
Volume22
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2010

Keywords

  • ISAS

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