Heritage, Volume 12, Number 2, Spring 1994 Page: 26
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with an excellent ethnohistoric and very
limited archaeological record, is problematical.
The two types of data are not always
compatible. And even for the best studied
regions, Perttula is forced to acknowledge
limitations because of the lack of research.
Too, as Perttula admits, the data are not
unequivocal. Some regions appear to show
less effect than others (or at least manifest
effects at different times). The data are yet
too limited, however, to say if certain local
Caddoan groups may have initially beneficial
materially from contact and trade,
perhaps through positions as intermediaries,
showing a slightly different path of
This book is not for the casual reader.
For many general readers, the discussion
will be too detailed and complex. And
despite the amount of detail provided,
the book requires some familiarity with
Caddo archaeology; few of the hundreds
of references are offered as more than
passing citations. It is, however, a wellresearched
and superbly referenced discussion
of the historic Caddo and will
reward the careful reader. Perttula could
have chosen to argue the thesis of the
book in a much briefer format, with only
...the book is a valuable
resource for those who
want to know how far
archaeology might be
able to go, not just in
history, but in addressing
some complex and
difficult historical issues.
It should eventually find
its way into the classroom
as a text...
passing references to the less relevant or
less well-documented areas. Instead, he
has written a book that is at once a clear
and thorough presentation of his argument
as well as an excellent summary of
the protohistoric/historic Caddo from,
as the title states, both archaeological and
Perttula's book is an essential reference
for the specialist in Caddo culture and
Caddo archaeology (the comprehensive
bibliography alone is worth the price of the
book.) It offers much to a wider audience,
however. Anyone who has ever studied
the impacts of European/Native American
contacts and the decline of native
societies will welcome this as an excellent
case study that succeeds in bridging the
gap between historic documents and archaeological
data. Perhaps even more important,
the Caddo book is a valuable
resource for those who want to know how
far archaeology might be able to go, not
just in reconstructing culture history, but
in addressing some very complex and difficult
historical issues. It should eventually
find its way into the classroom as a text,
not only for the study of the Caddo, but for
the study of European impacts on native
people in general.
HERITAGE book review editor John Peterson
is a professional archaeologist who lives and
works in El Paso.
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Texas Historical Foundation. Heritage, Volume 12, Number 2, Spring 1994, periodical, Spring 1994; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth45413/m1/26/: accessed April 29, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas Historical Foundation.