In the Shadow of the Steamboat

A Natural and Cultural History of North Warner Valley, Oregon

This volume tracks 13,000 years of environmental and cultural change in North Warner Valley, part of the Oregon Desert that has largely escaped researchers’ attention. The authors present a decade of fieldwork and laboratory analyses that reveals a record of human activity that waxed and waned with local and regional environmental and social change. Open-air sites, lithic technology, plant and animal foods, and bone and shell objects—most from a stratified rockshelter record that spans almost ten millennia—tell a story of people who visited North Warner Valley periodically to collect marsh plants, rabbits, and other resources.
Smith and colleagues present their work in a way that allows readers to understand not only how people adapted to local change but also how North Warner Valley fits into the complex mosaic of precontact history in the American West. This research is the most comprehensive work conducted in the northern Great Basin in more than two decades. Its multidisciplinary nature should interest students of natural and cultural history, archaeology, and Indigenous lifeways.
Geoffrey Smith is Regents’ Professor and executive director of the Great Basin Paleoindian Research Unit in the Department of Anthropology at the University of Nevada, Reno. He has worked in the American West for more than two decades and has authored more than fifty journal articles and book chapters. 
Table of Contents:

List of Figures
List of Tables
List of Supplemental Tables Available Online
Foreword by Don D. Fowler and Catherine S. Fowler

Part I. Project Setting
1. Research Perspectives 
Geoffrey M. Smith
2. Archaeological and Ethnographic Context 
Geoffrey M. Smith and Pat Barker
3. The History of Lake Warner
Teresa A. Wriston and Geoffrey M. Smith

Part II. The Little Steamboat Point-1 Rockshelter
4. History of Work, Stratigraphy, and Cultural Chronology
Geoffrey M. Smith, Judson B. Finley, and Bryan S. Hockett
5. Feature Distribution, Content, and Plant Use
Jaime L. Kennedy, Geoffrey M. Smith, and Bryan S. Hockett
6. Fauna
Bryan S. Hockett, Evan J. Pellegrini, Geoffrey M. Smith, and Erica J. Bradley
7. Flaked Stone Artifacts
Geoffrey M. Smith, Richard L. Rosencrance, and Daniel O. Stueber
8. Early Holocene Leporid Processing
Madeline Ware Van der Voort and Geoffrey M. Smith
9. Ground- and Burned-Stone Artifacts
Geoffrey M. Smith and Denay Grund
10. Stone, Bone, and Shell Ornaments and Tools
Geoffrey M. Smith and Bryan S. Hockett
11. Fiber Artifacts
Anna J. Camp, Pat Barker, and Eugene M. Hattori
12. Site Structure and Occupation Duration
Erica J. Bradley, Geoffrey M. Smith, and Christopher S. Jazwa

Part III. North Warner Valley Settlement-Subsistence Patterns
13. Survey Results
Geoffrey M. Smith, Teresa A. Wriston, and Donald D. Pattee

Part IV: Synthesis and Conclusions
14. A Natural and Cultural History of North Warner Valley
Geoffrey M. Smith


Praise and Reviews:“The book presents a trove of well-collected data, up-to-date techniques, and valley-focused synthesis. It is a truly multidisciplinary effort with advanced practitioners and talented students. As a reader, I benefitted from clear organization, clear questions, and logical sequence.”
—D. Craig Young, principal investigator and director of cultural resources consulting and research, Far Western Anthropological Research Inc., Great Basin Branch, Nevada

“In the tradition of longer-term research in the Fort Rock Basin to the west and Steens Mountain to the east, [this study] serves to address a poorly documented area between these preceding efforts. The information on the Lake Warner lake level history, the nature of the early LSPl occupations, and the evidence for large-scale rabbit drives are especially notable… An excellent and important study.”
—Thomas Connolly, archaeological research director, University of Oregon Museum of Natural & Cultural History
Contributions by Pat Barker, Erica J. Bradley, Anna J. Camp, Judson B. Finley, Denay Grund, Eugene M. Hattori, Bryan S. Hockett, Christopher S. Jazwa, Jaime L. Kennedy, Donald D. Pattee, Evan J. Pellegrini, Richard L. Rosencrance, Daniel O. Stueber, Madeline Ware Van der Voort, and Teresa A. Wriston