Continuity and change in the eastern Aleutian archaeological sequence

Richard S Davis, Rick Knecht

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

21 Citations (Scopus)


The eastern Aleutian prehistoric archaeological sequence is key for understanding population movements, cultural exchanges, and adaptations to environmental changes over a wide area of the north Pacific and Bering Sea during the Holocene. An important question is, Can the settlement history of the eastern Aleutians be understood as a single continuous tradition lasting some 9,000 years, or were there major population and cultural influxes along with periods of widespread population abandonment? We review the available archaeological evidence with reference to recent mtDNA and nucleic DNA studies of prehistoric and contemporary Arctic and Subarctic populations and conclude that the evidence points to an overall cultural continuity with notable incursions and excursions of people and cultural elements into and out of the eastern Aleutians.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)507-524
Number of pages18
JournalHuman Biology
Issue number5-6
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2010


  • eastern Aleutians
  • prehistoric archaeology
  • eastern Aleutian prehistory
  • Arctic small tool tradition
  • Hog Island
  • Amaknak Island
  • Margaret Bay
  • Umnak Island
  • Unalaska Island


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