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Exploring the use and life of Mantle's Cave (5MF1) through spatial analysis


Rediscovered in the early 1900s, the captivating artifacts from Mantle's Cave (5MF1) caught the attention of enthusiasts and archaeologists alike. Nestled above the banks of the Yampa River in Dinosaur National Monument, the alcove cave was used by the Fremont (A.D. 1-1350) peoples. The site's primary excavation was completed by Charles R. Scoggin and Edison P. Lohr from 1939-1940 who were employed by the University of Colorado Museum of Natural History. Their work generated the primary interpretation of the site as a storage facility and has been supported by subsequent research. This thesis works with the collection and archives related to the work of the University of Colorado to reconstruct how Mantle's Cave was used. Using literature on the markers of habitation, storage, and ritual behavior, this project evaluated how and where these elements were present at the site. This project found several markers of activity beyond storage was present at the site. An assessment of temporal data from the site was another component of this project. The results of this project suggest that Mantle's Cave was a place that Fremont people and some earlier people frequented to store items and complete a variety of everyday tasks.


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Castle Park
Dinosaur National Monument
Mantle's Cave


Associated Publications