This thesis represents the results of investigations into a small, rural household structure (Structure 2) that constitutes part of a larger residential complex (Operation 7) at the ancient Maya community of Medicinal Trail. The goal of this study was to address questions regarding the status and function of Operation 7's ancient inhabitants during the Late/Terminal Classic. This was done in hopes of clarifying the role(s) of such residential groups within ancient Maya society. The goals of this research were accomplished in two ways: excavation and settlement pattern analysis. An overview of localized and regional settlement patterns is given and used as means to contextualize Operation 7 in order to generate conclusions regarding the status and function of its ancient occupants. Archaeologically recovered features and artifacts augmented the settlement pattern data and were used to provide chronological information and as material support for arguments. An overview of organizational models is given in order to better understand Operation 7 and Medicinal Trail during the Late/Terminal Classic.;A number of conclusions were made as a result of this research. First, given its bench and associated ceramics, Structure 2 was confirmed as being primarily a residential building constructed during the Late Classic period. Second, the ancient occupants of Operation 7 constituted a local elite group that served as leaders of the community. Third, Medicinal Trail was a rural site that constituted part of La Milpa's immediate sustaining area and hence was subordinate to its larger neighbor. Finally, the Late Classic population explosion resulted in the emergence of localized elites that were the primary inhabitants of large rural courtyard groups.