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Frederick H. Sterns and the Portrayal of Variation in Central Plains Pottery

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  20 January 2017

Donna C. Roper*
Affiliation:
Department of Sociology/Anthropology/Social Work, 204 Waters Hall, Kansas State University, Manhattan, Kansas 66506 (droper@ksu.edu)

Abstract

Lyman et al.’s recent history of graphic depictions of culture change attributes the first use of bar graphs to James Ford in 1935. Ford, though, was anticipated in 1915 by Frederick Sterns, working with pottery from 27 late prehistoric Nebraska phase lodge sites in eastern Nebraska. Sterns used both tabular data summaries and divided bar graphs to show ordered variation over space in vessel neck diameter, types of appendages, and type of decoration. Underlying this analysis was a conception of these dimensions as varying independently of one another. Geographic groups within the Nebraska phase therefore exhibit clinal variation and can be characterized by differing proportions of attributes. Sterns’s work never became very well-known as archaeologists on the Central Plains turned to typological analysis for organizing pottery assemblages.

Résumé

Résumé

La historia reciente de Lyman et al de representaciones gráficas del cambio cultural le atribuye en 1935 el primer uso de gráfico de barras a James Ford. Sin embargo, Frederick Sterns se anticipó a Ford en 1915 por sus estudios de la cerámica en 27 casas de tierra de de la fase Nebraska en sitios prehistóricos tardíos del oeste del estado de Nebraska. Sterns usó tanto los resúmenes de datos en forma de tabla y gráficos de barras divididos para mostrar la variación ordenada a través del espacio, es decir, según su ubicación geográfica, en el diámetro del cuello de la vasija, los tipos de apéndices y el tipo de decoración. La base de este análisis fue el concepto de que esas dimensiones varían independientemente, una de otra. Los grupos geográficos dentro de la fase Nebraska por eso muestran la variación clinal y pueden caracterizarse por las variantes proporciones de sus atributos. El trabajo de Stern nunca se conoció bien porque los arqueológicos de las Llanuras Centrales optaron por un análisis tipológico para organizar las colecciones de cerámica.

Type
Reports
Copyright
Copyright © The Society for American Archaeology 2008

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