The residues of feasting and public ritual at early Cahokia
Archaeological remains excavated from the stratified layers of a pre-Columbian borrow pit in the middle of the Cahokia site inform our understanding of how ritual events were related to the social and political foundations of that enormous center. Ordinary and extraordinary refuse, ranging from foods and cooking pots to craft-production debris and sumptuary goods, are associated with a series of large-scale, single-event dumping episodes related to activities that occurred in the principal plaza. Taken as a set, the layers of ceramic, lithic, zooarchaeological, archaeobotanical, osteological, paleoentomological, and sedimentological materials reveal that the construction of Cahokia's Mississippian order was an active, participatory process.
Center for Archaeological Research
Pauketat, Timothy R., Lucretia S. Kelly, Gayle J. Fritz, Neal H. Lopinot, Scott Elias, and Eve Hargrave. "The residues of feasting and public ritual at early Cahokia." American Antiquity (2002): 257-279.