SCLEROCHRONOLOGICAL MEASURES OF SEASONALITY AT A LATE WOODLAND MOUND ON THE MISSISSIPPI GULF COAST
Seasonality of site occupation has been an important issue in the archaeology of precolumbian coastal populations in the U.S. Southeast. Sclerochronological oxygen isotope measurements to estimate season of capture were performed on marsh clam (Rangia cuneata) and oyster (Crassostrea virginica) shells from a Late Woodland platform mound in coastal Mississippi. This study is the first oxygen isotope analysis of archaeological Rangia cuneata. The results of the study, supported by vertebrate faunal and plant seasonal indicators and depositional circumstances, indicate that mound trash deposits were generated by short-term activities during the spring and summer months. Factors that could reduce the precision of the seasonal estimates are identified.