Allie Smith

Degree Program: PhD


I am a doctoral student with interests in native identity and agency at Late Mississippian and Contact era sites in the Southeast. I received a Bachelor of Arts degree in anthropology from Auburn University in 2013 and a Master’s degree in anthropology from the University of Mississippi in 2017. My thesis research focused on the stylistic variation of a ceramic assemblage from a Late Mississippian to Early Contact era site in northeast Mississippi. My analyses identified a hybrid ceramic assemblage was present based on the presence of surface decorations and tempers from Mississippian and historic Chickasaw types in association with one another in discrete feature contexts. The presence of these ceramic styles together identifies a link between the fifteenth-century Mississippian world and the historic Chickasaws of the eighteenth-century. My dissertation research will focus on identity and agency during early interactions between the Spanish and Natives at Spanish mission sites along the Georgia coast.  The movement of people and the creation of new communities make sites from this period ideal to understand social relationships and how those relationships are conveyed through material remains like ceramic wares. I will use ceramic assemblages from Spanish mission sites to understand the formation of new native identities through the choices potters make by recognizing the resistance of new practices, persistence of traditions, and change caused by agency.