Date Awarded


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (M.A.)




Martin D Gallivan

Committee Member

Martin D Gallivan

Committee Member

Danielle Moretti-Langholtz

Committee Member

Michael B Barber


Excavated in the 1970s and 80s by Lefty Gregory, the Hatch site is arguably among the most significant precolonial archaeology sites in the Commonwealth of Virginia. Though the collection sat in storage for decades, it recently became accessible to researchers. The thorough excavation combined with abundant radiocarbon data allow the historical narrative of this magnificent site to come into focus. an unusual place, hidden in a remote location, the Hatch site witnessed at least 600 years of regularly occurring ritualized gatherings. These gatherings involved the sacrifice and internment of dogs as well as elaborate feasts on both estuarine and terrestrial resources. This study focuses on the ornate zone-decorated pottery found at the Hatch site. This unusual ceramic type originated in the Delaware River Valley during the second half of the Middle Woodland period. It appeared at the Hatch site during the Late Woodland period when Native people used it in the largest and most elaborate of these feasting rituals. This thesis presents the precolonial history of the Hatch site and discusses the place of zone-decorated pots within this narrative.



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