The Archaeology of North Carolina

North Carolina Archaeological Time

The Woodland and Mississippian Periods in North Carolina

Coastal Woodland || Piedmont Tradition Early/Middle Woodland   ||  Piedmont Tradition Late Woodland   ||  Southern Piedmont Late Woodland  ||  Appalachian Summit Woodland   ||  South Appalachian Mississippian

Southern Piedmont Late Woodland

The southern Piedmont region is archaeologically unique within North Carolina. During most of Late Woodland times cultures here did not participate in the Piedmont Village Tradition. Instead they were influenced by South Appalachian Mississippian.

Between A.D. 1000 and 1400, Mississippian-influenced societies developed from the coast of Georgia to the mountains of North Carolina. Known archaeologically as Etowah, Wilbanks, Savannah, Pisgah, Irene, and Pee Dee, these politically complex cultures build mounds for the elite, participated in elaborate ceremonialism, and sometimes ruled over large territories.

Pee Dee Culture (A.D. 1000 - 1500)

In the southern North Carolina Piedmont, the expression of the South Appalachian Mississippian tradition is the Pee Dee culture. The Town Creek site, on the Little River in Montgomery County is the most important Pee Dee site.

Caraway Phase (A.D. 1500 - 1700)

Towards the end of the Late Woodland period, the Caraway phase marks a return to the mainstream of the Piedmont Village Tradition.

North Carolina Piedmont Woodland and South Appalachian Mississippian sites
©2010 UNC-RLA