Banner for LabNotes
From Lab Notes
Contact Information
Forest Products Laboratory
One Gifford Pinchot Drive
Madison, WI 53726-2398
Phone: (608) 231-9200
Fax: (608) 231-9592
Email

 

You are here: FPL Home  / Information Products & Services  / Publications

Requested Product

Title: Paired dating of pith and outer edge (terminus) samples from prehispanic Caribbean wooden sculptures

Source: In: Proceedings of the 6th international radiocarbon and archaeology symposium, edited by E. Boaretto and N.R. Rebollo Franco. Radiocarbon Volume 54, Volume 3/4, 2013; pp. 677-688.

Author(s)Brock, Fiona; Ostapkowicz, Joanna; Ramsey, Christopher Bronk; Wiedenhoeft, Alex; Cartwright, Caroline

Publication Year: 2012  View PDF »

Category: Conference Proceedings
Associated Research Project(s):   FPL-4714-1B

Abstract: Radiocarbon dating of historical and archaeological wood can be complicated, sometimes involving issues of “inbuilt” age in slow-growing woods, and/or the possibility of reuse or long delays between felling and use of the wood. Terminus dates can be provided by dating the sapwood, or the outermost edge of heartwood, while a date from the pith can give an indication of the first years of growth. A sequence of samples from specific points within the bole can be used to determine the growth rate of the tree. Such a combined dating strategy is particularly useful in cross-referencing dates from a single piece, better placing it in its chronological context. This paper reports paired or multiple dates from 11 wooden sculptures dated as part of the Pre-Hispanic Caribbean Sculptural Arts in Wood project, which studied 66 wooden artifacts attributed to the pre-colonial Taíno, the indigenous peoples of the Caribbean’s Greater Antilles. The calibrated ages of the pieces published here range from ~AD 700–1500, indicating that the Taíno were producing elaborate sculptures much earlier than previously thought. The paired or multiple dates from these carvings confirmed the accuracy of the results, and were also used to construct a growth rate model of what was expected to be a slow-growing species (Guaiacum sp.). This model demonstrates that the boles used to create the sculptures grew on average 1 cm every 6–13 yr.

Keywords: Taino; radiocarbon dating; growth modeling; guaiacum

Publication Review Process: Formally Refereed

File size: 344 kb(s)

Date posted: 11/18/2013

This publication is also viewable on Treesearch:  view
RITS Product ID: 66771
Current FPL Scientist associated with this product
Wiedenhoeft, Alex C.
Research Botanist
  

Additional items that might interest you
View the video celebrating FPL's 100 years of public service in 2010, from the producers of the Greatest Good....view

Research Highlights from FPL....view

Termite Eradication: A search for the Holy Grail.... view

Moisture Management in Residential Construction Series videos...view

Wood Floor Systems in Residential Construction Series videos....view
- FPL's Mission and Strategic Plan -

FPL's mission is to identify and conduct innovative wood and fiber utilization research that contributes to conservation and productivity of the forest resource, thereby sustaining forests, the economy, and quality of life. ... ..more »

- FPL Research Emphasis Areas -
Advanced Composites

As an integral part of the FPL mission, we improve the long-term sustainability of our Nation's forests by creating valuable composite products from biobased materials ... ..more »


Advanced Structures

The FPL has been in the forefront of wood-frame housing research since 1910 and has long been recognized as a world leader in such housing-related areas as engineered wood ... ..more »


Forest Biorefinery

We all know the compelling reasons that the United States needs to reduce its dependence on fossil fuels. Historically, the greatest increases in energy demand have been for transportation fuels ... ..more »


Nanotechnology

A leader in wood products research for over a century, the FPL is positioning itself to become the lead Federal research facility for the application of nanotechnology in forest products ... more »


Woody Biomass Utilization

Forests in the United States contain a substantial amount of small-diameter, overstocked, and underutilized material.FPL research projects are exploring the potential of the small-diameter ... ..more »