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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Archaeological Evidence for Stages of Manufacture of Olivella Shell Beads in California


The detailed study of shell bead production refuse enhances the ability of archaeologists to determine when and where particular bead types were manufactured. As discussed below, since the dating of bead and ornament types is far from conclusive, such studies will help refine the chronology. Furthermore, analysis of shell detritus from archaeological contexts greatly expands on the few ethnographic cases and replication studies available that describe shell bead and ornament manufacture techniques (Merriam MS; Barrett and Gifford 1933; Barrett 1952; Hampson 1975; King 1978; Macko 1984).

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