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Reconstructing Frontenac Island’s History

Posted by Edward V. Curtin on September 24, 2014 in Archaeology |

Buffer  Because history gives meaning to places, I have looked closely at reconstructing the history of Frontenac Island.  This appears to be a very long and eventful history.  Recognition of a long history stretches out the perspective of Frontenac Island in the sense that historic processes such as forming communities and mediating diverse traditions may […]

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Frontenac, Island of History

Posted by Edward V. Curtin on September 19, 2014 in Archaeology |

Buffer  If history is the process of human life experienced, symbolized, and remembered, then Frontenac Island must be one of the oldest and most significant historic places in New York State.  Frontenac Island, in Cayuga Lake at Union Springs, New York is the last of the four great Archaic period sites excavated by William A. […]

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Glimpses of Archaic Societies

Posted by Edward V. Curtin on September 9, 2014 in Archaeology |

Buffer  Many of the sites that archaeologists discover in New York State are referred to as Archaic sites:  sites occupied during the Archaic period from about 3,000-10,000 radiocarbon years ago (or, calibrated, approximately 3,300 to 11,500 calendar years ago).  Many of these sites are small and have relatively few artifacts, especially compared to Late Woodland […]

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Papers on the Paleoindian and Archaic Periods Presented at the 2014 NYSAA Annual Meeting in Oneonta

Posted by Edward V. Curtin on April 16, 2014 in Archaeology |

Buffer  On Friday, April 11 I traveled down I-88 to the Spring, 2014 meetings of the New York Archaeological Council (NYAC) and the New York State Archaeological Association (NYSAA).  I am always nostalgic on these trips south to communities such as Oneonta, Binghamton and Owego.  Speeding past Hudson Lake or crossing the Susquehanna River east […]

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The Lamoka Lake Site, Schuyler County, New York: Was There a Southern Connection?

Posted by Edward V. Curtin on June 18, 2013 in Archaeology |

Buffer  “the Indian Knoll culture…may have been involved in patterns of change that could explain the development of such later cultures as Riverton, or even Lamoka” (Winters 1974:xxii). Forty-two years before this assessment by Midwestern archaeologist Howard Winters, William A. Ritchie (1932:131), thought that his new discovery, the Archaic community at Lamoka Lake, arrived in […]

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The Enigmatic Archaic Site at Lamoka Lake, New York

Posted by Edward V. Curtin on June 12, 2013 in Archaeology |

Buffer  Arthur Parker had long suspected that New York State’s prehistoric past featured a very ancient era before the invention of pottery and agriculture. By the early 1920s, he referred to this poorly-documented period as the Archaic Algonkian (Parker 1922). He also recognized another early culture that he called Eskimo-like due to the presence in […]

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The Trailside Site: A Middle Archaic Period Site in Queensbury, New York

Posted by Edward V. Curtin on April 11, 2013 in Archaeology |

Buffer  The Trailside site was discovered and excavated by Curtin Archaeological prior to construction of a pump station in the mid-2000s near Route 9 in Queensbury. The name Trailside comes in part from the site’s location next to a dirt trail off of U. S. Route 9, which winds through Queensbury and the nearby communities […]

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Early to Middle Archaic: Glimpses of Early Ways of Life in Greene County, New York

Posted by Edward V. Curtin on April 4, 2013 in Archaeology |

Buffer  Since the days in the 1920s when the New York State Museum’s Arthur Parker (1924) excavated at Coxsackie’s Flint Mine Hill, the flats, ridges, and stream-sides of eastern Greene County, New York, have drawn the attention of archaeologists. Archaeological sites are abundant here, as are important sources of material for prehistoric stone industry in […]

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Paleoindian to Archaic in Saratoga County, New York

Posted by Edward V. Curtin on March 27, 2013 in Archaeology |

Buffer  Archaeologists cite 10,000 radiocarbon years Before Present (BP) as the end of the Paleoindian period and the beginning of the Archaic. This reflects a certain reality in the approximate timing of technological change in many regions, but as a year 10,000 BP is arbitrary. In northern New York cultures using lanceolate projectile points, most […]

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The Old Ones

Posted by Edward V. Curtin on March 21, 2013 in Archaeology |

Buffer  Recently I remembered being an archaeology student, and how the words that archaeologists use for periods, cultures, or traditions often sounded familiar yet unfamiliar: names like the Archaic and the Woodland, Laurentian and Point Peninsula. These are words which sound strange in some ways to everyone who doesn’t deal with them routinely: words sometimes […]

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