Consilience: Radiocarbon, Instrumental Neutron Activation Analysis, and Litigation in the Ancestral Caddo Region



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Through the creation and analysis of databases for radiocarbon, instrumental neutron activation analysis (INAA), and law, macro-level trends are exposed that form the framework of a broader research program aimed at advancing ideas of craft specialization and archaeological theory in the ancestral Caddo region of Southwest Arkansas, Northwest Louisiana, Northeast Texas, and Southeast Oklahoma. The findings of this investigation illustrate the research potential that remains buried within the context of cultural resource management (CRM) reports and legal databases (Westlaw and LexisNexis) that is awaiting consumption within regional research designs aimed at exploring the nuances and trends that appear through synthetic research.

While more can?and should?be done to exploit these resources, this endeavor represents the first logical step toward a more general comprehension of Woodland and Caddo occupations in the region. As a testament to those projects that generated these data, the findings herein are representative of decades of work by numerous academic institutions, archaeological firms, undergraduate as well as graduate students, and avocational archaeologists alike; all of which have and continue to contribute to a more synthetic and dynamic understanding of the things, peoples, and cultures that lie underfoot.