The Dangers of Fishing: The Impacts of Warfare on Subsistence Pursuits in the Mississippian-period Central Illinois Valley

Amber VanDerwarker, Gregory Wilson, Steven Kuehn

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperpeer-review


This paper considers how villagers altered their subsistence systems when faced with the intensification of chronic and violent inter-group warfare. Specifically, we address changes in fishing strategies, including shifts in technology (e.g., lines and nets) and preferred location of capture (e.g., river channels, backwater sloughs, etc.), as inferred through species representation, relative abundance, and metric data on fish vertebral centra from five AD 1100-1350 sites in the Central Illinois River Valley. We argue that increasing violence led villagers to decrease the time spent outside of the protected limits of their palisade walls, which would have impacted their foraging activities.
Original languageEnglish (US)
StatePublished - 2014


  • ISAS

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