8,000-500 BC

The economy of Archaic cultures depended on hunting, fishing, and collecting a wide variety of plant foods in an essentially modern environment. Recent evidence from Kentucky and Tennessee indicates that Late Archaic people may have domesticated squash around 2300 BC. People became increasingly efficient in their adaptation to various environments throughout the Ohio area.

Archaic communities established camps in various parts of their territories during different seasons of the year according to the availability of food resources. Some of those camps remained fairly permanent bases where sizeable groups of people congregated periodically. Others were quite small and temporary, perhaps occupied by a single family for a short period of time.

In addition to chipping spear points and knives from flint, the Archaic people learned how to make axes and various types of food processing tools by grinding and polishing hard stone such as granite.

A growing emphasis on trade and ceremonialism in Late Archaic times foreshadowed developments among the cultures of the Woodland tradition.