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Commoners, Tribute, and Chiefs

The Development of Algonquian Culture in the Potomac Valley
Stephen R. Potter
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Using an innovative combination of archaeology, anthropology, and ethnohistory, Stephen R. Potter traces the rise of the Chicacoans, whose domain on the south shore of the Potomac River straddled the boundary between the Powhatans and the Conoys. By presenting a case study of the Chicacoans from A.D. 200 to the early seventeenth century, Potter offers readers a window onto the development of ALgonquian culture in the Chesapeake and illuminates the responses of its constituent societies to the invading Europeans. He examines the stratification of individual cheifdoms into elites and masses of tribute-paying commoners, and he demonstratesthe progressive consolidation of ALgonquian peoples in the century preceding the European influx.