Date of Award


Document Type

Open Access Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)


Historical Archaeology

First Advisor

Stephen W. Silliman

Second Advisor

Kevin A. McBride

Third Advisor

John M. Steinberg


The Monhantic Fort site on the Mashantucket Pequot reservation in southeastern Connecticut has yielded many insights into Pequot life in the late 17th century. This fortified village, occupied during King Philip's War, has given archaeologists a glimpse of the domestic practices and organization of the people who lived within as well as details about how they engaged with military expeditions. In this thesis, I examine the lithic assemblage from Monhantic Fort. This assemblage, comprised of European flint employed to create tools like gunflints and strike-a-lights, can be used to investigate how the Pequots utilized new stone tool technologies and negotiated these technologies with pre-contact practices of lithic tool making. The first issue my thesis explores is raw material availability, as other sites have suggested that European flint was a scarce raw material in 17th century New England. The second issue concerns the retention of pre-contact Native practices of lithic production and maintenance. By analyzing the flakes and debitage recovered from different areas at the fort, one can see whether or not the Mashantucket Pequot had adopted specialization in production and maintenance of stone tools and where these activities were taking place. The evidence from both the artifacts and the documentary record demonstrates that raw material availability was not a problem for the Mashantucket Pequot living at the fort. It also shows that production and maintenance were not specialized activities, but that some households did have a more heavy focus on lithics.