Located on Cape Canaveral within the Indian River region of Central Florida, the Burns Site (8BR85) reveals important information about the Ais, a mobile fisher-gatherer group who occupied the area during the Malabar II Period (A.D.1000 – 1600). As a bridging region between the two largest cultures in Florida (Timucua to the North and Calusa to the South), Central Florida and the Ais, in general, are under-studied concerning paleoethnobotanical research. The research presented here investigated starch residues of ceramic vessel sherds from the Burns Site which were identified through a comparative catalog which was built-in part of this research project. Results proved that microbotanical study of the prehistoric period is feasible in Central Florida, where several different kinds of food plants were found during this study, including important economic plants such as maize (Zea mays), common beans (Phaseolus vulgaris), acorn (Quercus sp.), smilax (Smilax sp.), and coontie (Zamia integrifolia). Although this research could not prove (or disprove) agriculture in the region, it did confirm various kinds of food plants were consumed by Ais prehistorically, including some plants without known historical usage. The results of this project indicate that the prehistoric Ais may have lived a different lifestyle than previously believed.
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Master of Arts (M.A.)
College of Sciences
Length of Campus-only Access
Masters Thesis (Campus-only Access)
Park, Hanna, "Paleoethnobotany and Starch Grain Residue Analysis of Pottery From Site 8BR85, Cape Canaveral, Florida" (2022). Electronic Theses and Dissertations, 2020-. 1425.
Restricted to the UCF community until December 2023; it will then be open access.