From Grey to Print: Early Archaic Components on the East Don River: Archaeological Investigations of the Edgar and Andridge Sites

Ontario Archaeology, No 99, 2019
Ronald F Williamson, Deborah A. Steiss, and Andrew M. Stewart

The Edgar and Andridge sites, situated on headwater streams of the east Don River, were salvage excavated by Archaeological Services Inc. between 2003 and 2006. This article summarizes the subsequent analyses of their settlement data and material culture. An environmental reconstruction was undertaken that included examinations of the geomorphological origin of the area, climate, regional soil characteristics, inferred vegetational cover, and availability of floral and faunal resources. These and the site data were then compared with current archaeological understandings of Late Paleo and Archaic lifeways in the general region to interpret the structure and functions of the sites. Even though the Andridge and Edgar sites date to the Early Archaic period and seemingly have two different but complementary functions, they were situated approximately 800 m apart across two small watercourses, suggesting that they are unlikely to have been used concurrently. The occurrence of multiple generalized and specialized areas at earlier sites raises the question whether one or more generalized areas existed near Andridge and Edgar—areas that would have yielded diverse toolkits reflecting a wide range of domestic tasks. The study of the two sites has, nevertheless, yielded additional data concerning the use of landscapes by hunter-gatherer populations who inhabited the north shore of Lake Ontario area during the Early Archaic period

Acknowledgements: This summary is drawn from two ASI license reports, large portions of which were prepared and edited by the authors. Field direction for Andridge was provided by Bruce Welsh and for Edgar by Bruce Welsh, Andrew Clish, and Jenneth Curtis. The photographs were taken by Andrea Carnevale and, in the case of Andridge, digitally enhanced by John Howarth. The maps for Edgar were prepared by Sarina Finlay and those for Andridge by David Robertson. Figures 1 and 2 were prepared by Andrew Stewart. We are grateful to Andrea Carnevale for her help in preparing the manuscript and to Chris Ellis, Paul Karrow, Tim Patterson, David Robertson, and Peter Storck for their interest and support.

Additional Documents

Full text of the article is available here