Affiliation: College of Arts and Sciences, Department of Anthropology
The arrival of Europeans to North America spawned instability among Native populations. Past archaeological studies have worked to reconstruct Contact period human-environmental relationships, botanical usage, and subsistence patterns of Native Americans in the North Carolina Piedmont. That research largely emphasizes patterns of continuity regarding resource selection and subsistence patterns. In this study, I incorporate archaeobotanical data from 10 sites excavated across the Dan, Eno, and Haw River drainages and construct a nuanced depiction of Native botanical usage before and after establishing recurring contact with Europeans. My analysis supports previous observations that Native Piedmont groups had similar subsistence practices with observable differences across time and space. Additionally, I propose evidence for intensification in the use of medicinal taxa over time. I argue these lines of evidence demonstrate the maintenance of prehistoric Siouan practices.