Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Repository


Master of Arts




Dr. Neal Ferris


This thesis examines the features and spatial patterning of features across the Figura site (AgHk-52), a Late Woodland, Younge Phase Western Basin site, dating to the 13th century AD. The features from this site were analyzed to gain insight into these unique contexts and how they can, in turn, advance our understanding of life at the Figura site. Given the clean and ordered settlement pattern of the site, the spatial relationships of features to other settlement patterns – such as residential and non-residential areas, inside and outside the palisade – could be analyzed. The site was divided into defined residential and non-residential areas based on concentrations of features and/or structures. Specific feature attributes of depth, volume, feature stratigraphy and artifact content were used to determine if patterns could be identified from the features at this site, and specifically if residential and non-residential areas can be distinguished from each other. The findings of this thesis demonstrate that cultural features, when pit characteristics are considered in context, represent individual moments of daily living across a community that help reveal spatial tendencies built up over the life of the site. The findings drawn from Figura also offer us real insight into understanding settlement and spatial patterning at other Western Basin sites where large numbers of these features have been documented, but lack other settlement patterns.