First Advisor

Barbara Brower

Date of Publication


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (M.S.) in Geography






Logistic regression, Hunter-gatherer, Predictive modeling, Northern Great Plains, Powder River Basin (Wyo. and Mont.) -- Antiquities, Coal mines and mining -- Powder River Basin (Wyo. and Mont.), Cultural property -- Protection -- Powder River Basin (Wyo. and Mont.)



Physical Description

1 online resource (vi, 59 pages)


In the Powder River Basin of Wyoming, our nation's interest in protecting its cultural heritage collides with the high demand for carbon fuels. "Clinker" deposits dot the basin. These distinctive buttes, created by the underground combustion of coal, are underlain by coal veins; they also provided the main lithic resources for prehistoric hunter-gatherers. These deposits signify both a likelihood of extractable carbon and high archaeological site density. Federal law requires that energy developers must identify culturally significant sites before mining can begin. The research presented here explains the need for and describes a statistical tool with the potential to predict sites where carbon and cultural resources co-occur, thus streamlining the process of identifying important heritage sites to protect them from adverse impacts by energy development. The methods used for this predictive model include two binary logistic regression models using known archaeological sites in the Powder River Basin. The model as developed requires further refinement; the results are nevertheless applicable to future research in this and similar areas, as I discuss in my conclusion.


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Portland State University. Dept. of Geography

Persistent Identifier