Graduation Year


Document Type




Degree Name

Master of Arts (M.A.)

Degree Granting Department


Major Professor

Thomas J. Pluckhahn, Ph.D.

Committee Member

Brent R. Weisman, Ph.D.

Committee Member

Robert H. Tykot, Ph.D.


ceramic analysis, INAA, gross paste analysis, vessel form and function, communities of practice, mound complex, Woodland Period, Florida archaeology


The Crystal River site (8CI1) is a Woodland-period mound (ca. 1000 BC to AD 1050) complex located on the west-central Gulf coast of Florida. Links to the Hopewell Interaction Sphere suggest that the people of Crystal River had connections with a broad range of communities, yet little is known concerning the role the site played in local, regional, or long-distance exchange networks. Pottery traditions vary amongst different communities of practice, therefore the level of interaction at Crystal River can be measured by looking at variation in the ceramic assemblage. I combine type/attribute, vessel form and function, gross paste, and chemical analyses to determine the amount of variability present in the pottery assemblage. These analyses show that Crystal River has a high level of ceramic variation with some spatial and temporal patterning. To determine Crystal River’s membership in and potential role within a sphere of interaction, I compare these patterns to three community types with diverse social interfaces. This research suggests that Crystal River may have started out as a homogenous, residential community but through time began to interact with a number of diverse, regionally associated communities drawn to the site for special occasions.