The Prehistory of Texas

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Paleoindians first arrived in Texas more than eleven thousand years ago, although relatively few sites of such early peoples have been discovered. Texas has a substantial post-Paleoindian record, however, and there are more than fifty thousand prehistoric archaeological sites identified across the state. This comprehensive volume explores in detail the varied experience of native peoples who lived on this land in prehistoric times. Chapters on each of the regions offer cutting-edge research, the culmination of years of work by dozens of the most knowledgeable experts.

Based on the archaeological record, the discussion of the earliest inhabitants includes a reclassification of all known Paleoindian projectile point types and establishes a chronology for the various occupations. The archaeological data from across the state of Texas also allow authors to trace technological changes over time, the development of intensive fishing and shellfish collecting, funerary customs and the belief systems they represented, long-term changes in settlement mobility and character, landscape use, and the eventual development of agricultural societies. The studies bring the prehistory of Texas Indians all the way up through the Late Prehistoric period (ca. a.d. 700–1600).

The extensively illustrated chapters are broadly cultural-historical in nature but stay strongly focused on important current research problems. Taken together, they present careful and exhaustive considerations of the full archaeological (and paleoenvironmental) record of Texas.

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Editorial Reviews


“One of the most impressive state summaries to date, the volume will serve avocational archaeologists, students, and professionals as an introduction to Texas prehistory and will provide an authoritative, readable source for general readers.” --Choice
Southwestern Historical Quarterly

“A real and substantive work that will be on the bookshelves of every scholar of Texas history and prehistory for years to come…a major resource for archaeologists and other scholars…monumental in scope and execution.”--Southwestern Historical Quarterly
Texas Archeological Society

“. . . extremely important compilation that provides up-to-date information on Texas archeology as of about A.D. 1998-2000. . . If you truly want to learn about the rich cultural history of Texas during the 12,000 or so years before Europeans arrived in the Americas, you need to read this book.”--Texas Archeological Society
Bulletin of the Texas Archeological Society
“Destined to be an essential reference for the foreseeable future.” —Bulletin of the Texas Archeological Society, Volume 76
Volume 76 Bulletin of the Texas Archeological Society

“Destined to be an essential reference for the foreseeable future.” --Bulletin of the Texas Archeological Society, Volume 76
Southern Historical Quarterly
. . . a real and substantive work that will be on the bookshelves of every scholar of Texas history and prehistory for years to come.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781603445191
  • Publisher: Texas A&M University Press
  • Publication date: 1/21/2013
  • Series: Texas A&M University Anthropology Series , #9
  • Pages: 480
  • Sales rank: 1,079,505
  • Product dimensions: 8.90 (w) x 12.00 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

TIMOTHY K. PERTTULA, a Fellow of the Texas Archaeological Society, is an archaeologist with Archaeological & Environmental Consultants, LLC, and lives in Austin, Texas.
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Table of Contents

Ch. 1 An introduction to Texas prehistoric archeology 5
Ch. 2 Paleoindian archeology in Texas 15
Ch. 3 Archeology in Central Texas 101
Ch. 4 The prehistory of South Texas 127
Ch. 5 Prehistoric occupation of the central and lower Texas coast 155
Ch. 6 The archeology of the Native American occupation of Southeast Texas 181
Ch. 7 Prehistory of the Jornada Mogollon and Eastern trans-Pecos regions of West Texas 205
Ch. 8 The lower Pecos River region of Texas and Northern Mexico 266
Ch. 9 Archeology and late quaternary environments of the southern high plains 283
Ch. 10 The Palo Duro complex 296
Ch. 11 From stone slab architecture to abandonment 331
Ch. 12 The archeology of the post oak Savanna of East-Central Texas 347
Ch. 13 The prehistoric and Caddoan archeology of the Northeastern Texas Pineywoods 370
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