The Expanding Southwestern Frontier of Mesoamerica: Research on Previously Excavated Pacific Coastal Nicaraguan Collection: Peabody Museum
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Research Year: 1996
Culture: West México and Veracruz
Location: Tepetate, Department of Granada, Nicaragua
Table of Contents
Analysis and Results
The Cocibolca Phase
The Xalteva Phase
The research herein reported was conducted with artifactual collections, mainly ceramics, from the site of Tepetate in the region of Granada. This site was first described and dug by Albert Norweb and Gordon R. Willey in 1961 (Willey and Norweb, 1961). Three test pits were excavated by them in a nucleated area where approximately twelve low stone-faced mounds were recorded.
A regional research conducted by Salgado (1996; Salgado and Zambrana, 1994) indicated that Tepetate was the main settlement of a three-level regional hierarchy during the last six centuries before the Contact in Granada. The site was almost completely destroyed in its nucleated area by urban construction in the early 1970s.
The collection dug by Willey and Norweb was an important source to gain some understanding on the sequence of occupation, and the activities developed in the nucleated area of the site. The analysis of the collection stored at the Peabody Museum yielded important results. First, it showed that the site, at least in its nucleated part, was not occupied before A.D. 900. Second, it helped refine the ceramic complexes of the two later periods of precolumbian occupation in the area of Granada. Third, it provided evidence for specialization in the form of pottery production.
The settlement of the site by the Chorotega, or other groups of Mesoamerican origin, is indicated by diverse features of the material culture as detailed in the following discussion.
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Submitted 12/01/1997 by:
Silvia Salgado González