Ferdinandina

Ferdinandina, or Deer Creek Site, is a thirty-acre archaeological site that is located in north central Oklahoma near the Kansas boarder. The site would cover thirty-nine football fields. The name Ferdinandina was found on a map published in the 1860s and was proposed to be one of the first white settlements in Indian Territory. Located near the Bryson-Paddock site, the Wichita Indians inhabited both the Ferdinandina and the Bryson-Paddock site in the mid-eighteenth century. Ferdinandina is thought to be where the French traded with the Wichita Indians and the Louisiana Colony received the majority of its meat.

Before archaeologists excavated, they surveyed the site and looked for evidence of artifacts and features. They also made cuts as they were excavating so they could examine the stratigraphy. After they surveyed, the archaeologist excavated the features they found and recorded their context. Some of the features found are evidence of housing, earthworks, trenches, and postholes. Some of the artifacts that were found in their matrixes include copper knives, beads, sherds, and stone scrapers. After excavation, the archaeologist went back to the lab and placed the artifacts into classifications, typically using seriation, so they could better understand the evidence.


Oklahoma Historical Society Collections

Mildred Mott Wedel. The Deer Creek Site, Oklahoma: A Wichita Village Sometimes Called Ferdinandina, An Ethno-historian’s View. (Oklahoma: Oklahoma Historical Society: Series in Anthropology, 1981.)

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