Delineating the Spatial and Temporal Boundaries of Late Woodland Collared Wares from Wisconsin and Illinois
by John "Jamie" Kelly
Abstract of Masters Thesis
Department of Anthropology
University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee
The focus of this thesis is the temporal, spatial distributions of five different collared ware varieties from northern Illinois and southern Wisconsin. These five collared varieties include Starved Rock Collared, Aztalan Collared, Point Sauble Collared, Hahn Cord Impressed, and a fifth category reserved for unassigned collared wares. In addition, issues of cultural association of ceramic wares to specific groups will be explored.
Since there is no consensus among archaeologists about how collared wares are related to the ubiquitous Madison wares found in the northern Prairie Peninsula, the focus of this study is to delineate boundaries across both time and space for each of the ware varieties from Wisconsin and Illinois. The analysis of this study, therefore, is designed to: (a) provide baseline descriptions of collared wares based on the current literature and collections; (b) describe the depositional context in which these materials were found; (c) construct frequency distributions of wares found at each of the sites identified in this thesis; and (d) construct chronological frequency distributions for each ware type from radiocarbon-dated samples derived from those sites listed in this thesis.
Whether through in situ change, diffusion, or migration, determining how collared wares were introduced to this region is beyond the scope of this study. Rather, the analysis outlined above tests two hypotheses. The first hypothesis claims that Late Woodland groups introduced collared wares into southern Wisconsin from Illinois, Indiana, and Michigan. The alternative hypothesis holds that collared wares developed in situ in Wisconsin out of the local Effigy Mound Tradition. Given the limitations of the current radiocarbon database for collared wares, there is not enough evidence to support either hypothesis. Rather, collared wares appear between ca. A.D. 900 and 1000 in both Wisconsin and Illinois. This ceramic tradition is estimated to end between ca. A.D. 1100 and 1200 when Upper Mississippian ceramics are generally believed to have replaced many of the earlier Late Woodland wares.