Encyclopedia of Geoarchaeology

2017 Edition
| Editors: Allan S. Gilbert

Soil Survey

Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4020-4409-0_178

Introduction

Soil survey and mapping is one of the most fundamental and best-known activities in pedology. The production of soil maps based on systematic soil surveys was one of the primary driving forces in pedologic research in both academic and governmental settings in the USA and worldwide through much of the twentieth century (Simonson, 1987, 1997; Yaalon and Berkowicz, 1997). Soil maps have been prepared for a variety of uses at scales ranging from a few hectares to continental and global. Published soil surveys contain a wealth of data on landscapes as well as soils, but they are generally an underutilized (and likely a misunderstood) resource in geoarchaeology, probably because of their agricultural and land-use orientation.

Many countries in the world have national soil surveys whose primary mission is mapping and inventorying the nation’s soil resources. In the USA, soil survey is a cooperative venture of federal agencies, state agencies, including the Agricultural...

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© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Anthropology and Departments GeosciencesUniversity of ArizonaTucsonUSA
  2. 2.Department of AnthropologyUniversity of KansasLawrenceUSA