Tobacco Pipes of the Strickler Site, a 17th Century Susquehannock Village
SubjectSusquehannock Indians; Archaeology; Anthropology; Pennsylvania; Lancaster County; 17th century; material culture; Strickler site
This study analyzes an assemblage of smoking pipes from the Strickler Site, a Susquehannock village in Central Pennsylvania occupied from 1645 to 1665. These pipes were excavated by Arthur Futer in the 1940’s and 1950’s from a burial ground located in the northern portion of the site known as Cemetery 2. The collection is now located at the North Museum in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. The Strickler Site was the only Susquehannock site occupied during this time period. Located along the Susquehanna River, it provided the Susquehannock people with an ideal location to trade with local European groups, particularly the English, the Dutch, and the Swedes. The occupation of the Strickler Site was therefore a time of intense interaction with neighboring European and Native American groups. Although the Susquehannock remained highly competitive within the context of the colonial fur trade during this time, they were also engaged in constant warfare with neighboring Iroquoian groups to maintain power within this competitive trade arena.-- The study of material culture provides an entry point into the complex dynamics of Susquehannock culture during this time period. I discuss the diverse collection of pipes represented at the site and comment on their function, meaning, and purpose. More importantly, I analyze these pipes in order to comment on the broader context of Susquehannock exchange, negotiation, and agency during this time. I hope that this type of study will demonstrate the problematic nature of acculturative and direct-historical approaches, and instead emphasize how the material culture from Susquehannock sites can be used to demonstrate the ways in which these people negotiated a highly dynamic colonial context.
Franklin and Marshall College Archives, Undergraduate Honors Thesis 2012
- F&M Theses Collection 
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