Title

Statistical Testing for Patterns in the Distribution of Middle Columbia Housepit Archaeological Sites

Presenter Information

Matt Johnson

Document Type

Oral Presentation

Location

SURC Ballroom B/C/D

Start Date

21-5-2015

End Date

21-5-2015

Keywords

Statistics, Archaeology, Geography

Abstract

Cultural resource management salvage archaeology of the past 50 years has resulted in high resolution geographic data concerning the location of housepit archaeological sites. For this study, statistical tests (Quadrat and Spearman Rank Correlation) were completed for the location of 116 housepit archaeological sites in relation to three rapids and three dams along a section of the Middle Columbia River, stretching approximately 60 miles from the Rock Island Dam at the north end to the beginning of the Hanford Reach at the south end. Housepit locations were tested against the location of rapids to test for correlation between favorable fishing locations and housepit locations. Housepit locations were also tested against the location of dams to test for correlation between a potential bias in the location of discovered archaeological sites and housepit location. These tests found that housepit sites are significantly clustered, that their locations are correlated to the locations of rapids along this section of the Columbia River, and that their locations are not correlated to the locations of dam construction. These results are consistent with both previous data and the ethnographic record, supporting the location of housepit village sites near favorable fishing locations.

Poster Number

48

Faculty Mentor(s)

John Bowen

Department/Program

Resource Management

Additional Mentoring Department

Geography

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May 21st, 11:30 AM May 21st, 2:00 PM

Statistical Testing for Patterns in the Distribution of Middle Columbia Housepit Archaeological Sites

SURC Ballroom B/C/D

Cultural resource management salvage archaeology of the past 50 years has resulted in high resolution geographic data concerning the location of housepit archaeological sites. For this study, statistical tests (Quadrat and Spearman Rank Correlation) were completed for the location of 116 housepit archaeological sites in relation to three rapids and three dams along a section of the Middle Columbia River, stretching approximately 60 miles from the Rock Island Dam at the north end to the beginning of the Hanford Reach at the south end. Housepit locations were tested against the location of rapids to test for correlation between favorable fishing locations and housepit locations. Housepit locations were also tested against the location of dams to test for correlation between a potential bias in the location of discovered archaeological sites and housepit location. These tests found that housepit sites are significantly clustered, that their locations are correlated to the locations of rapids along this section of the Columbia River, and that their locations are not correlated to the locations of dam construction. These results are consistent with both previous data and the ethnographic record, supporting the location of housepit village sites near favorable fishing locations.