Great Plains Studies, Center for


Date of this Version



Published in Great Plains Research Vol. 13, No.1, 2003. Copyright © 2003 Center for Great Plains Studies, University of Nebraska – Lincoln. Used by permission.


While its title purports the work to cover the North American Plains, it is, in fact, almost entirely restricted to the northwest Plains. There is a constant effort to attempt iconographic relationships with other areas, including the Columbia Plateau, the Eastern Woodlands, and Precambrian Shield, with inevitably debatable conclusions. Its basic contribution is its highly ambitious effort to synthesize and integrate the full body of northwestern Plains rock art both culturally and chronologically. Although the approach to cultural determinations in the archaeological past and their continuity into identifiable groups in historic times is probably more explicit and definitive than the data will bear, this is a commendable effort to make sense of the voluminous available data. The illustrations, impressive and perfectly done to clarify points in the text, reflect the main stylistic and typological modes of northwestern Plains rock art. The volume will very probably serve as a basic source for all further study of the subject.