Kansas Archaeology

Robert J. Hoard and William E. Banks, editors

From Kanorado to Pawnee villages, Kansas is a land rich in archaeological sites—nearly 12,000 known—that testify to its prehistoric heritage. This volume presents the first comprehensive overview of Kansas archaeology in nearly fifty years, containing the most current descriptions and interpretations of the state's archaeological record. Building on Waldo Wedel's classic Introduction to Kansas Archaeology, it synthesizes more than four decades of research and discusses all major prehistoric time periods in one readily accessible resource.

In Kansas Archaeology, a team of distinguished contributors, all experts in their fields, synthesize what is known about the human presence in Kansas from the age of the mammoth hunters, circa 10,000 B.C., to Euro-American contact in the mid-nineteenth century. Covering such sites as Kanorado-one of the oldest in the Americas-the authors review prehistoric peoples of the Paleoarchaic era, Woodland cultures, Central Plains tradition, High Plains Upper Republican culture, Late Prehistoric Oneota, and Great Bend peoples. They also present material on three historic cultures: Wichita, Kansa, and Pawnee.

“This publication should serve the archaeological community well for years to come. Kansas Archaeology is well written and edited, and up-to-date. It contains an indispensable wealth of information for anyone interested in the archaeology of the Central and Southern Plains.

—Missouri Archaeological Society Quarterly

“A new comprehensive overview. This new work synthesizes the archaeological research that has been conducted over the last 50 years within the state. Hoard and Banks have assembled a virtual who’s who in Kansas archaeology to come up with sixteen chapters describing the cultural sequence within the region, as well as topics ranging from prehistoric plant utilization, sources of stone for tool manufacture, and the effects of landscape evolution on site preservation. . . . A welcome addition to anyone who works in the central Plains or has an interest in Kansas history. . . . Kansas Archaeology has a lot to offer to both the professional and avocational archaeologist.

—Journal of the Iowa Archeological Society
See all reviews...

The findings presented here shed new light on issues such as how people adapted to environmental shifts and the impact of technological innovation on social behavior. Included also are chapters on specialized topics such as plant use in prehistory, sources of stone for tool manufacture, and the effects of landscape evolution on sites. Chapters on Kansas culture history also reach into the surrounding region and offer directions for future inquiry. More than eighty illustrations depict a wide range of artifacts and material remains.

An invaluable resource for archaeologists and students, Kansas Archaeology is also accessible to interested laypeople—anyone needing a summary of the material remains that have been found in Kansas. It demonstrates the major advances in our understanding of Kansas prehistory that have applications far beyond its borders and point the way toward our future understanding of the past.

About the Author

Robert J. Hoard has served as Kansas State Archaeologist since 2000. William E. Banks was an archaeologist with the Kansas State Historic Preservation Office for six years and is now a researcher for the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique in France.