Northeast Historical Archaeology


The 18th-century French and British post at Fort Niagara was the site of numerous conferences and meetings in which wampum beads were exchanged between European powers and Native Americans. Considering the distance from shell sources and wampum production sites, this article explores the presence of wampum at Fort Niagara through an examination of the archaeological and documentary evidence. It is suggested that, via several intermediaries, the Fort Niagara wampum beads originated in Albany, an 18th-century hub of wampum production.