Document Type


Date of Degree Completion

Spring 2021

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Cultural and Environmental Resource Management

Committee Chair

Patrick McCutcheon

Second Committee Member

Steven Hackenberger

Third Committee Member

David Conca


Archaeological investigations stemming from the removal of the Elwha and Glines Canyon Dams of the Elwha River Valley in 2014 resulted in the identification of nine archaeological sites and collection of 6,870 pre-contact lithic artifacts, primarily composed of fine-grained volcanic stone. Regional models of this raw material usage and site location within a glacially-carved riverine environment place these sites within the Old Cordilleran/Olcott cultural tradition that has been widely observed in the Salish Sea. This study is focused on the variation in raw materials used in the production of stone tools in the Elwha River Valley to understand if similar stone tool production strategies and raw material consumption are observed throughout other previously recorded sites in the region. Stone tool manufacture was measured with previously used methods and techniques and tool stone provenance data was collected with a portable X-ray florescent (pXRF) spectrometry. Fine-grained volcanic stone appears in sparsely in geologic deposit but exists in over 79 percent of the total artifact assemblage and in all forms of stone tool reduction sequences. Assemblages exhibit similar characteristics to those of the Old Cordilleran cultural tradition surrounding dimensions of fragment type, raw materials and reduction class but show intersite variability when stratified within and outside the current glacial maximum of the Cordilleran Ice Sheet.

Reference A Stone Tool Dimension Counts.docx (252 kB)
Reference of Stone Tool Dimension Counts

Reference B Rock Phys Properties.docx (24 kB)
Reference for Rock Physical Property Classification for Geologic Samples

Reference C XRF PPM Counts.docx (59 kB)
Reference for pXRF Trace Element Ratios