Peter Geraci


A common problem in archaeology is the constant shortage of time, money, and personnel necessary to process the extraordinary amount of artifacts that accompanies the excavation of heavily occupied prehistoric sites such as Cahokia and Koster. The debitage excavated during the 1974 University of Illinois-Chicago field school on the bluff crest of Starved Rock, 11LS12, has been sitting in storage awaiting analysis for nearly 40 years. Through the use of popular analysis strategies including mass analysis (Ahler 1989), attribute analysis (Andrefsky 2005), and raw material identification (Ferguson 1995) questions regarding raw material preference, core reduction strategies, and site disturbance can be answered. The results indicate that there are two local raw materials that were used proportionally more than others, and that bifacial core reduction was the primary reduction strategy. Due to the limitations on sample size only a small portion of the excavated area can be discussed with any validity, necessitating future investment of time, money and personnel to this task.