AAA Annual Meeting Program

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Paper Information:
This paper may be of particular interest to:  Students
Type: Paper
Paper Title: ARCHITECTURE, IDENTITY, AND CHEROKEE TOWNS IN THE SOUTHERN APPALACHIANS
Author: CHRISTOPHER RODNING (Tulane University)   
Date/Time: Sat., 4:30 PM
Co-Author(s): CHRISTOPHER RODNING (Tulane University) 
Abstract: During the eighteenth century, public structures in Cherokee towns in the southern Appalachians were settings for community events, for deliberations by town leaders and town councils, and for meetings between Cherokee town leaders and English colonists. These structures were known as townhouses, which, architecturally, were comparable to domestic structures, but larger. Towns and town leaders, as well as European colonists and European trade goods, circulated through these architectural spaces. As symbolic and even monumental forms of architecture, townhouses manifested the identity of a local group of households as a town, and they anchored towns to particular points in the southern Appalachian landscape. Assertions of town identity, and connections to particular places, became increasingly critical to community vitality and survival in the southern Appalachians in the aftermath of European contact. Dozens of townhouses dotted the Cherokee cultural landscape during the eighteenth century, and English traders noted that only those settlements with townhouses were known as towns, as such. What did townhouses look like, both before and after European contact, and where were they located? What relationships were there between townhouses and Cherokee identity? This paper considers archaeological and ethnohistoric evidence about Cherokee townhouses in the southern Appalachians and the roles they played in Cherokee responses to European contact.

Program Number: 4-0775
Session Title: THE ARCHITECTURE OF IDENTITY
Session Sponsor: Archaeology Division
Session Date/Time: Sat., 1:45 PM-5:30 PM
Organizer(s): KATHRYN SAMPECK (Illinois State University) 
Chair(s): ELIZABETH SCOTT  
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