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McCurtain County

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McCurtain County, Oklahoma

The A.W. Davis Site

Pot of the style found at the A.W. Davis Site

Ancestors of the modern-day Caddo Nation lived in southeastern Oklahoma probably for several thousand years. The Caddo settled in parts of Arkansas, Louisiana, Oklahoma and Texas and developed a complex culture based on the cultivation of corn and other crops.

Caddoan groups in Oklahoma lived along major streams and tributaries in the oak-pine forests of southeastern Oklahoma. In their gardens grew corn, beans, squash, sunflowers and tobacco. They exploited local game animals like deer and turkey and they may have organized seasonal hunting parties to the western prairies in search of bison. The people traced their ancestry through their mother's family. They traded pottery and other materials with groups through the area.

The A.W. Davis site, on the west bank of the Glover River, dates to the period just shortly before the arrival of Europeans in the Americas. Excavations at the site in 1955 uncovered a circular house pattern about 18' in diameter. Circular houses developed rather late in time among the Caddo. Earlier houses were oval or rectangular with rounded corners. These houses were grass-covered and usually had a fire pit within although no such pit was found in the A.W. Davis house.

Artifacts recovered during the excavation at the site included dart and arrow points, elaborately-decorated pottery, stone hoes and ground stone earspools (read more and see photos of these artifact types in the Oklahoma Artifacts web book).

A rectangular mound, 40' X 80' and 12' high, is within 100 yards of the A.W. Davis site, but it is unclear at this time if the mound is directly related to the village occupation. Mounds built by the Caddoan people of the area were often used as bases for civic/religious structures.

For further information about the A.W. Davis site:

"The A.W. Davis Site, Mc-6, of McCurtain County, Oklahoma," Bulletin of the Oklahoma Anthropological Society, X, 1962.

For further information about the Caddo on the web:

Tejas: Life and Times of the Caddo

Number of Prehistoric Sites in McCurtain County Identified to Time Period


Paleo = ?-8,000 BP / Archaic = 8,000-2,000 BP / Woodland = 2,000-1,000 BP / Village 1000-500 BP
BP (before present)


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