Archaeological Palynology

Our lab conducts palynological analyses of archaeological materials for the purpose of better understanding the diets and medicinal plant usage of people in the past. We have examined pollen from coprolites excavated from a variety of sites in the American Southwest and in northern regions of Mesoamerica. We have studied pollen from archaeological sediments collected from historic sites in the Midwest and on the East Coast of the United States of America. We have also examined pollen from mummies and burials located in South America (Brazil, Chile, and Peru), Asia (South Korea), and Europe (Belgium, Lithuania, and Italy). These studies have yielded a great deal of information on diets, medicines, mortuary rituals, and seasonality of death thanks to pollen analyses.