This compilation of Moore's publications on western and central Florida provides all of his archaeological data on the region's mounds and prehistoric canals in a single volume.
The name Clarence B. Moore is familiar to every archaeologist interested in the southeastern United States. This amateur archaeologist's
numerous scientific expeditions to the region resulted in dozens of well-illustrated publications, the value of which increases daily as many of the sites he investigated continue to be destroyed by modern development.
Moore invested considerable time and effort exploring Florida's archaeological sites, devoting more pages of published reports and articles to Florida than to any other state. Because of the wealth of material on Florida, Moore's Florida expedition publications have been
collected in three separate volumes, all published within the Classics in Southeastern Archaeology series. The thirteen papers reproduced in this
volume present the results of Moore's research in West and Central Florida.
Moore's first and last expeditions were to Florida and spanned almost fifty years of archaeological investigations. Following the eastern river drainages to central and western Florida, in 1900 Moore concentrated his efforts along the Florida Gulf Coast, spurred by the exciting
discoveries of Frank Hamilton Cushing at Key Marco in 1896. Although this region is rich in mound sites, many sites located by Moore in the early
years of this century had already been destroyed by construction and lime processing. In addition to mound groupings—some containing masses of skeletal remains—Moore found a number of sites connected by a network of prehistoric canals. Several of the sites located by Moore contained European trade goods and have been used to trace the early wanderings of the conquistadores in the New World.
Moore's early work on the Florida Gulf Coast succeeded in preserving much of the archaeological record in this area. He is to be credited with remarkable insights concerning mound and earthwork construction, artifact trade networks, and chronology development.