Skip to main content Accessibility help
×
Home

Bear's Journey and the Study of Ritual in Archaeology

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  20 January 2017

Meghan C. L. Howey
Affiliation:
Museum of Anthropology, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1079 mhowey@umich.edu and joshea@umich.edu
John M. O'Shea
Affiliation:
Museum of Anthropology, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1079 mhowey@umich.edu and joshea@umich.edu
Corresponding

Abstract

This paper considers the archaeological study of ritual and explores the interrelationships that exist between ideologically meaningful accounts of ritual and the material representations of ritual practice that remain for archaeological evaluation. Specifically, the paper addresses the development and antiquity of the Midewiwin ritual, a ceremonial complex that is known historically throughout the Great Lakes region. The serendipitous discovery of a linkage between the Mide origin tale of Bear's Journey and the layout of the Late Prehistoric earthwork enclosures of northern Michigan provides an opportunity to document how a ritual system is represented in the archaeological record and to evaluate how the understanding of the archaeology is altered by having access to the meaning underpinning the ritual performance. The research provides unambiguous evidence for the prehistoric antiquity of the Mide ceremony and illustrates the contribution archaeology can make to understanding the long-term processes of ritual practice and change.

Este trabajo considera el estudio arqueológico de rituales y explora las existentes interrelaciones entre las consideraciones ideológicamente significativas de actos rituales y las representaciones materiales de las prácticas de rituales que encontramos y evaluamos arqueológicamente. Específicamente, se enfoca en el desarrollo y antigüedad del ritual de Midewiwin, un complejo ceremonial que se es conocido históricamente en las regiones próximas a los Great Lakes. El descubrimiento casual de la relación entre la narrativa de origen Bear's Journey y el patrón arquitectónico de los recintos de tierra ubicados en el norte de Michigan ofrece una oportunidad para documentar cómo un sistema ritual se manifiesta en los restos arqueológicos, y de ahí se evalúa como es que el entendimiento arqueológico se modifica con el acceso a los significados culturales que apuntalan los actos rituales. Esta investigación ofrece evidencias para evaluar la antigüedad prehistórica de la ceremonia Mide, y hace una demostración de los beneficios de cómo la arqueología apoya el entendimiento de procesos asociados a las prácticas rituales y la transformación de ritos al largo plazo.

Type
Articles
Copyright
Copyright © The Society for American Archaeology 2006

Access options

Get access to the full version of this content by using one of the access options below.

References

Adler, Michael A., and Wilshusen, Richard H. 1990 Large-Scale Integrative Facilities in Tribal Societies: Cross-Cultural and Southwestern US Examples. World Archaeology 22:133146.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Aldenderfer, Mark 1993 Ritual, Hierarchy, and Change in Foraging Societies. Journal of Anthropological Archaeology 12:140.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Angel, Michael 2002 Preserving the Sacred: Historical Perspectives on the Ojibwa Midewiwin. University of Manitoba Press, Winnipeg.Google Scholar
Arnold, Bettina 2002 A Landscape of Ancestors: The Space and Place of Death in Iron Age West-Central Europe. In The Space and Place of Death, edited by H. Silverman and D. Small, pp. 129144. Archaeological Papers of the American Anthropological Association 11. Arlington, Virginia.Google Scholar
Barrett, John C. 1994 Fragments from Antiquity: An Archaeology of Social Life in Britain, 2900–1200 BC. Blackwell Publishers, Oxford.Google Scholar
Beld, Scott 1993 Site 20IA37 (Arthursburg Hill Earthworks), Lyons Township, Ionia County, Michigan. In Lyons Township Archaeological Survey, edited by Scott Beld, pp. 382. Submitted to Office of the State Archaeologist, report No. S-92-313. Copies available from Office of the State Archaeologist, Lansing, Michigan.Google Scholar
Bell, Catherine 1997 Ritual: Perspectives and Dimensions. Oxford University Press, Oxford.Google Scholar
Benton-Banai, Edward 1988 The Mishomis Book - The Voice of the Ojibway. Red School House Publishers, St. Paul.Google Scholar
Benton-Banai, Edward 2005 The Three Fires Midewiwin Lodge http://www.geoc-ities.com/sundancer_gurl/Midewiwin.html, accessed February 15, 2004.Google Scholar
Bemardini, Wesley 2004 Hopewell Geometric Earthworks: A Case Study in the Referential and Experiential Meaning of Monuments. Journal of Anthropological Archaeology 23:331356.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Bradley, Richard 1998 The Significance of Monuments: On the Shaping of Human Experience in Neolithic and Bronze Age Europe. Routledge, London.Google Scholar
Brown, James 1997 The Archaeology of Ancient Religion in the Eastern Woodlands. Annual Review of Anthropology 26:465485.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Buikstra, Jane, and Charles, Douglas 1999 Centering the Ancestors: Cemeteries, Mounds, and Sacred Landscapes of the Ancient North American Mid-continent. In Archaeologies of Landscape: Contemporary Perspectives, edited by Wendy Ashmore and A. Bernard Knapp, pp. 201228. Blackwell, Oxford.Google Scholar
Cameron, Catherine M. 2001 Pink chert, projectile points, and the Chacoan regional system. American Antiquity 66:79101.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Carruthers, Peter J. 1969 The Mikado Earthwork 20AA5. Unpublished M.A. Thesis, Department of Anthropology, University of Calgary, Alberta, Canada.Google Scholar
Cleland, Charles 1965 Copy of unpublished field notes from Michigan State University Field School at Missaukee Earthworks (20MA11-12) and Boven Earthworks. Copy on file, Museum of Anthropology, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor.Google Scholar
Cornelius, Eldon, and Moll, Harold W. 1961 The Walters-Linsenman Earthwork Site. The Totem Pole 44(9): 19.Google Scholar
Densmore, Frances 1929 Chippewa Customs. Bulletin No. 86, Bureau of American Ethnology, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D.C.Google Scholar
Dewdney, Selwyn 1975 The Sacred Scrolls of the Southern Ojibway. University of Toronto Press, Toronto.Google Scholar
Dillehay, Tom D. 1990 Mapuche Ceremonial Landscape, Social Recruitment and Resource Rights. World Archaeology 22:223241.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Dustin, Fred 1932 Report on the Indian Earthworks in Ogemaw County, Michigan. Scientific Publications 1. Cranbrook Institute of Science, Bloomfield Hills, Michigan.Google Scholar
Fitting, James E. 1970 Archaeology of Michigan: A Guide to the Prehistory of the Great Lakes Region. Natural History Press, New York.Google Scholar
Fogelin, Lars 2006 History, Ethnography, and Essentialism: The Archaeology of Religion and Ritual in South Asia. In The Archaeology of Ritual, edited by E. Kyriakidis. Cotsen Institute of Archaeology, UCLA, Los Angeles, in press.Google Scholar
Goulais, Bob 2000 Three Fires Midewiwin Lodge. Anishinabek News (November). Nipissing First Nation, Ontario.Google Scholar
Greenman, Emerson F. 1926a Original field notes from the excavations in Missaukee County, Michigan, From July 1st to September 15th 1925 and also July 1st to October 20th, 1926. Unpublished Manuscript on file, Museum of Anthropology, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor.Google Scholar
Greenman, Emerson F. 1926b Michigan Mounds, With Special Reference to Two in Missaukee County. In Papers of the Michigan Academy of Science, Arts, and Letters, Vol. 7, pp. 1-9. Museum of Anthropology, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor.Google Scholar
Greenman, Emerson F. 1927 The Earthwork Enclosures of Michigan. Unpublished Ph.D. dissertation, Department of Anthropology, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor.Google Scholar
Hawkes, Christopher 1954 Wenner-Gren Foundation Supper Conference: Archaeological Theory and Method: Some Suggestions from the Old World. American Anthropologist 56(2): 155168.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Hickerson, Harold 1962 Notes on the Post-Contact Origin of the Midewiwin. Ethnohistory 9(4):404423.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Hickerson, Harold 1963 The Sociohistorical Significance of Two Chippewa Ceremonials. American Anthropologist 65(1):6785.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Hinsdale, Walter B. 1931 Archaeological Atlas of Michigan. Michigan Handbook Series No. 4. Museum of Anthropology, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor.Google Scholar
Hoffman, William J. 1891 The Midewiwin or “Grand Medicine Society” of the Ojibwa. In 7th Annual Report of the Bureau of American Ethnology for the Years 1885–1886, pp. 143300. Smithsonian Institute Press, Washington, D.C.Google Scholar
Howey, Meghan L. 2003 The View from Inside: The Impact of New Research at the Cut River Mounds Site (20RO1), Houghton Lake, MI. Paper presented at the 49th Midwest Archaeological Conference, Milwaukee.Google Scholar
Howey, Meghan L., and O’Shea, John M. 2002 Thinking Outside the Circle: New Research at Michigan’s Missaukee Earthworks. Paper presented at the 48th Midwest Archaeological Conference, Columbus.Google Scholar
Howey, Meghan L., and O’Shea, John M. 2004 Assessing Ritual Practices: A Stylistic Analysis of Ceramics from a Series of Earthworks in North Central Lower Michigan. Manuscript on file, Museum of Anthropology, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor.Google Scholar
Jackson, H. Edwin 1991 The Trade Fair in Hunter-Gatherer Interaction: The Role of Intersocietal Trade in the Evolution of Poverty Point Culture. In Between Bands and States, edited by Susan Gregg, pp. 265286. Center for Archaeological Investigations, Occasional Paper No. 9. Southern Illinois University, Carbondale.Google Scholar
Johansen, Kasper Lambert, Laursen, Steffen Terp, and Hoist, Mads Kahler 2004 Spatial Patterns of social organization in the Early Bronze Age of South Scandinavia. Journal of Anthropological Archaeology 23:3355.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Johansen, Peter G. 2004 Landscape, Monumental Architecture, and Ritual: A Reconsideration of the South Indian Ashmounds. Journal of Anthropological Archaeology 23:309330.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Judge, W. James 1989 Chaco Canyon-San Juan Basin. In Dynamics of South-west Prehistory, edited by Linda Cordell and George Gumerman, pp. 209262. Smithsonian Institute Press, Washington, D.C.Google Scholar
Kidder, Homer 1994 [1910] Ojibwa Narratives: Of Charles and Charlotte Kawbawgam and Jacques LePique, 1893–1895, edited by Arthur P. Bourgeois. Wayne State University Press, Detroit.Google Scholar
Kinietz, W. Vernon 1947 Chippewa Village: The Story of Katikitegon. Bulletin 25, Cranbrook Institute of Science, Bloomfield Hills.Google Scholar
Landes, Ruth 1968 Ojibwa Religion and the Midewiwin. University of Wisconsin Press, Madison.Google Scholar
Malville, J. McKim, and Malville, Nancy J. 2001 Pilgrimage and Periodic Festivals as Processes of Social Integration in Chaco Canyon. Kiva 66:327344.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Marcus, Joyce 2006 Rethinking Ritual. In The Archaeology of Ritual, edited by E. Kyriakidis, Cotsen Institute of Archaeology, UCLA, Los Angeles, in press.Google Scholar
Marcus, Joyce, and Flannery, Kent 1994 Ancient Zapotec Ritual and Religion: An Application of the Direct Historical Approach. In Ancient Mind: Elements of Cognitive Archaeology, edited by Colin Renfrew and Ezra Zubrow, pp. 5574. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Marcus, Joyce, and Flannery, Kent 2004 The Coevolution of Ritual and Society: New C14 Dates from Ancient Mexico. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 101:1825718261.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Marshall, James 1990 Map of the Missaukee Earthworks (20MA11-12). Copy on file, Museum of Anthropology, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor.Google Scholar
McPherron, Alan 1967 The Juntunen Site and The Late Woodland Prehistory of the Upper Great Lakes Area. Anthropological Papers No. 29. Museum of Anthropology, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor.Google Scholar
Milner, Claire McHale, and O’Shea, John M. 1998 The Socioeconomic Role of Late Woodland Enclosures in Northern Lower Michigan. In Ancient Earthen Enclosures of the Eastern Woodlands, edited by Robert Mainfort and Lynne P. Sullivan, pp. 181201. University Press of Florida, Gainesville.Google Scholar
Moll, Harold W., Moll, Norman G., and Cornelius, Eldon S. 1958 Earthwork Enclosures in Ogemaw, Missaukee, and Alcona Counties. The Totem Pole 41(3): 119.Google Scholar
O’Shea, John M. 2003 Inland Foragers and the Adoption of Maize Agriculture in the Upper Great Lakes of North America. Before Farming: The Archaeology of Old-World Hunter-Gatherers 2(3):121.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
O’Shea, John M., and Milner, Claire McHale 2002 Material Indicators of Territory, Identity, and Interaction in a Prehistoric Tribal System. In The Archaeology of Tribal Societies, edited by W Parkinson, pp. 220226. International Monographs in Prehistory, Ann Arbor.Google Scholar
Rappaport, Roy A. 1979 Ecology, Meaning, and Religion. North Atlantic Books, Richmond, California.Google Scholar
Renfrew, Colin 1994 The Archaeology of Religion. In Ancient Mind: Elements of Cognitive Archaeology, edited by Colin Renfrew and Ezra Zubrow, pp. 4754. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Renfrew, Colin 2001 Production and Consumption in a Sacred Economy: The Material Correlates of High Devotional Expression at Chaco Canyon. American Antiquity 66:1425.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Schachner, Gregson 2001 Ritual Control and Transformation in Middle-Range Societies: An Example from the American Southwest. Journal of Anthropological Archaeology 20:168194.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Schlesier, Karl 1990 Rethinking the Midewiwin and the Plains Ceremonial Called the Sun Dance. Plains Anthropologist 35:127.Google Scholar
Spielmann, Katherine 2002 Feasting, Craft-Specialization and the Ritual Mode of Production in Small-Scale Societies. American Anthropologist 104:195207.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Spindler, Louise S. 1978 Menominee. In Northeast, edited by Bruce G. Trigger, pp. 708724. Handbook of North American Indians, Vol. 15, William C. Sturtevant, general editor. Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D.C.Google Scholar
Thwaites, Rueben G. (editor) 1896–1901 The Jesuit Relations and Allied Documents Travels and Explorations of the Jesuit Missionaries in New France 1610–1791. vol. 59, Section 3rd:100–107. Burrows Brothers, Cleveland.Google Scholar
Toll, H. Wolcott 2001 Making and Breaking Pots in the Chaco world. American Antiquity 66:5678.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Trigger, Bruce 1976 The Children of Aataentsic: A History of the Huron People to 1660. McGill-Queens University Press, Montreal.Google Scholar
Van Dyke, Ruth 2004 Memory, Meaning, and Masonry: The Late Bonito Chacoan Landscape. American Antiquity 69:413431.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Warren, William W. 1984 [1885] History of the Ojibway People. Minnesota Historical Society Press, St. Paul.Google Scholar
White, Richard 1991 The Middle Ground: Indians, Empires, and Republics in the Great Lakes Region, 1650–1815. Cambridge University Press, New York.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Whitley, David S., and Keyser, James D. 2003 Faith in the Past: Debating an Archaeology of Religion. Antiquity 77:385393.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Full text views

Full text views reflects PDF downloads, PDFs sent to Google Drive, Dropbox and Kindle and HTML full text views.

Total number of HTML views: 0
Total number of PDF views: 42 *
View data table for this chart

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between 20th January 2017 - 23rd January 2021. This data will be updated every 24 hours.

Hostname: page-component-76cb886bbf-2rmft Total loading time: 2.525 Render date: 2021-01-23T15:35:25.326Z Query parameters: { "hasAccess": "0", "openAccess": "0", "isLogged": "0", "lang": "en" } Feature Flags: { "shouldUseShareProductTool": true, "shouldUseHypothesis": true, "isUnsiloEnabled": true, "metricsAbstractViews": false, "figures": false, "newCiteModal": false }

Send article to Kindle

To send this article to your Kindle, first ensure no-reply@cambridge.org is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part of your Kindle email address below. Find out more about sending to your Kindle. Find out more about sending to your Kindle.

Note you can select to send to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations. ‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be sent to your device when it is connected to wi-fi. ‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.

Find out more about the Kindle Personal Document Service.

Bear's Journey and the Study of Ritual in Archaeology
Available formats
×

Send article to Dropbox

To send this article to your Dropbox account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your <service> account. Find out more about sending content to Dropbox.

Bear's Journey and the Study of Ritual in Archaeology
Available formats
×

Send article to Google Drive

To send this article to your Google Drive account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your <service> account. Find out more about sending content to Google Drive.

Bear's Journey and the Study of Ritual in Archaeology
Available formats
×
×

Reply to: Submit a response


Your details


Conflicting interests

Do you have any conflicting interests? *