Making and understanding embarras bipoints : the replication and operational sequencing of a newly defined stone tool from the eastern slopes of Alberta
Roe, Jason W.
At pre-ceramic archaeological sites, projectile points are the primary diagnostic tool used by archaeologists. This reliance is even more pronounced along the eastern slopes of Alberta and boreal forest environments of Canada. The acidity of the soils, cryoturbation, and other transformative factors almost always destroy all but the most durable cultural material. In order to obtain the best understanding of precontact lifeways under these conditions we need to recognize and appreciate the diagnostic qualities of all lithic artifacts, not just projectile points. The main goal of my thesis will be to look at one such artifact type. In Alberta, predominantly along the eastern slopes, there have been a number of new and unique artifact types recovered from the cultural resource management studies that have been carried out for several forestry companies, oil and gas operations, and coal industries. The one of particular interest for this thesis will be the Embarras Bipoint (Meyer et al. 2002, Meyer 2003; Roe 2005a, 2005b). I intend to look at the geographical and temporal distribution of Embarras Bipoints. At present, Embarras Bipoints have been assigned to the Early Middle Period (7,500 to 5,000 B.P.). I will compile a data set of other large stone tools to compare to Embarras Bipoints. The theoretical approach will be chaîne opératoire which will be supplemented by the experimental replication of Embarras Bipoints. Ultimately, this technological study of Embarras Bipoints will demonstrate that when found in isolation, in the absence of diagnostic projectile points, or in any un-dateable context have the diagnostic qualities to further our understanding of the Early Middle Period along the Eastern Slopes of Alberta.
DegreeMaster of Arts (M.A.)
Early Middle Period