Professor Emeritus William Lovis publishes on effects of climate change on coastal sites at Sleeping Bear Dunes National Park

Department of Anthropology Professor Emeritus Dr. William Lovis and colleagues Dr. G. William Monaghan and Dr. Alan Arbogast recently published an article in The Journal of Island and Coastal Archaeology entitled, “Reconstructing the precontact Late Woodland archaeology of site 20LU115 and the landscape history of Sleeping Bear Point, Great Lakes, USA.” The article discusses the landscape evolution of Sleeping Bear Point, within Sleeping Bear Dunes National Park and Lakeshore, and the effects of global climate change on the alteration and management of archaeological sites on the Lake Michigan coastal zone.

Read the full article at:

Abstract: “A multifaceted, multidisciplinary research strategy was employed to reconstruct the taphonomy and environmental history of a late Holocene coastal archaeological site (20LU115) at Sleeping Bear Point on the northeast coast of Lake Michigan, USA. Our case study shows how interdisciplinary examination of coastal processes that impact archaeological site preservation and destruction can beneficially integrate human settlement into an evolving landscape. We contextualize coastal site taphonomy into an environmental framework that includes changing Lake Michigan lake levels and coastlines, vegetation regimes, and eolian activation and stabilization cycles during the past 2,000 years. Chronology for this framework derives from 10 radiocarbon and 12 Optically Stimulated Luminescence dates from beach ridges, dunes, paleosols, and human occupation horizons at or near the site. Such research outcomes, however, are not possible without focusing on the site as part of a larger landscape history, and could not have been realized without a multidisciplinary design that integrates geologists, physical geographers, environmental archaeologists, and cultural resources managers.”