Holes in Our Moccasins, Holes in Our Stories

Apachean Origins and the Promontory, Franktown, and Dismal River Archaeological Records

From 1930 to 1931, Julian Steward recovered hundreds of well-worn moccasins, along with mittens, bison robe fragments, bows, arrows, pottery, bone and stone tools, cordage, gaming pieces, and abundant faunal remains, making Utah’s Promontory Caves site one of the most remarkable hunter-gatherer archaeological records in western North America. Although Steward recognized that the moccasins and other artifacts were characteristic of the Canadian Subarctic and northern Plains and not the Great Basin, his findings languished for decades. 

This volume connects Steward’s work with results from new excavations in Promontory Caves 1 and 2 and illustrates that the early Promontory Phase resulted from an intrusive large-game hunting population very different from nearby late Fremont communities. Lingering for just one or two human generations, the cave occupants began to accept people as well as material and symbolic culture from surrounding thirteenth-century neighbors. Volume contributors employ a transdisciplinary approach to evaluate the possibility that the Promontory Phase materials reflect the presence of Apachean ancestors.  In these records lies the seeds for the intensive Plains-Puebloan interactions of the centuries that followed. 
John W. (Jack) Ives is professor in the Department of Anthropology, University of Alberta, and adjunct professor at Simon Fraser University and the University of Saskatchewan. He was founding executive director (2008–2019) of the Institute of Prairie Archaeology, now the Institute of Prairie and Indigenous Archaeology, where he remains a research associate. He is the author of A Theory of Northern Athapaskan Prehistory.

Joel C. Janetski is emeritus professor of anthropology at Brigham Young University, where he served as chair of the Department of Anthropology from 1998 to 2005. His related research is reported in books such as The Ute of Utah Lake, Hunter-Gatherer Archaeology in Utah Valley (with Grant Smith), and Archaeology and Native American History of Fish Lake, Central Utah
Table of Contents:

Preface by John W. Ives 

Part I. Contextualizing the Promontory Revisited Project
1. Introduction by John W. Ives and Joel C. Janetski 
2. Linguistic Relationships between Apachean and Northern Athapaskan: On the Possibility of “Eastern Athapaskan” by Conor Snoek, Michaela Stang, and Sally Rice 
3. Seeking Congruency: Search Images, Archaeological Records, and Apachean Origins by John W. Ives 
4. Promontory Culture in the Eastern Great Basin: An Update by Joel C. Janetski 
5. Promontory Revisited by John W. Ives, Joel C. Janetski, George R. Chournos, Gabriel M. Yanicki, Lindsay Johansson, and Jennifer Hallson 

Part II. The View from Promontory
6. The Promontory Moccasins and Footwear Landscapes in Late Period Western North America by John W. Ives, Michael Billinger, and Erika Sutherland
7. Follow the Women: Ceramics and Ethnogenesis in the Intermountain West by Gabriel M. Yanicki
8. Predicting Group Size and Structure Using Multiple Methods at Promontory Cave 1, Utah by Jennifer Hallson and Courtney Lakevold
9. Art in the Time of Promontory Cave: Enhancements and Reflections by Andrew Lints, John W. Ives, and Hilary McDonald
10. Archaeobotanical Investigations in the Promontory Caves by David Rhode
11. The Local and the Distant Reflected in the Perishable Technologies from the Promontory Caves by Elizabeth A. Goldberg, Katherine J. Latham, and Edward A. Jolie
12. Bison Ecology, Environmental Conditions, and the Promontory Phase, Northeast Utah by Vandy E. Bowyer and Jessica Z. Metcalfe

Part III. Beyond Promontory
13. Glimpses of Promontory Phase Settlement Practices and Social Networks: The Artifact and Faunal Assemblages from Site 10OA275 by Brooke S. Arkush
14. Franktown Cave, Colorado: A Promontory Culture Site on the Western Margin of the Great Plains by Kevin P. Gilmore, John W. Ives, and Derek Hamilton
15. The Dismal River Complex and Early Apache (Ndee) Presence on the Central Great Plains by Matthew E. Hill Jr., Sarah J. Trabert, and Margaret E. Beck

Part IV. Promontory and Apachean Origins
16. Ways of Becoming: The Promontory Phenomenon by John W. Ives and Joel C. Janetski

List of Contributors

Praise and Reviews:“An extraordinary contribution with scholarship at the highest level. The authors know the subject matter cold and thoroughly cover the literature. The Promontory project is an exciting development on many levels, beginning with longstanding questions about Athabascan origins and dispersals and working out to lingering archaeological/anthropological issues. The reach is considerable—involving the substance of linguistics and archaeology spanning western Canada, the Great Basin, and Plains through to the American Southwest. The book is extraordinarily well executed.”
—David Hurst Thomas, American Museum of Natural History, Smithsonian