Exploring the Radiocarbon Chronology of Western Washington Shell Midden Sites

  • Wed, Apr 21, 2021 7:00 PM - 8:00 PM
  • Digital - Zoom

    Internet , Port Townsend , Washington, 98368

Ticket Price $0.00-$10.00 This event is now over

This talk will present original research summarizing radiocarbon dates from shell midden sites in western Washington and what they may be telling us about changes in the precontact human population and the antiquity of maritime adaptations. It will provide brief background discussions of shell midden sites and how radiocarbon dating work, describe how my compilation of 1,038 radiocarbon dates from 224 shell midden sites was constructed, and then examine possible interpretations of the resulting distribution for insights into the prehistory of this region.  While some aspects of this topic can be complex, the discussion is intended for a general audience, rather than professional archaeologists; it will briefly note, but largely avoid, the details of technical arguments and other more esoteric issues.

Presenter Gary Wessen holds a M.A. and a Ph.D. in Anthropology from Washington State University and has operated as an archaeological consultant in the Northwest since 1983.  He has 50 years of archaeological fieldwork experience in western North America, having worked in Mexico, California, Oregon, Idaho, Washington, and southeast Alaska.  Most of his experience, however, has been in coastal and lowland forest settings in western Washington. To date, Wessen has worked with or conducted ten large-scale excavation projects, 96 small-scale site testing and evaluation projects, and more than 500 archaeological site survey projects.  

Date & Time

Wed, Apr 21, 2021 7:00 PM - 8:00 PM

Venue Details

Digital - Zoom

Internet , Port Townsend , Washington, 98368

Digital - Zoom
Jefferson County Historical Society