Sherd ID

Sophia reftting sherds from a potbreak that was recovered from the top zone of fill in the earthwork ditch.

As the end of the semester rapidly approaches, ceramic analysis continues in the Eastern North America range at UMMA. Most of the sherds we have looked at so far appear to fall neatly within Appalachian Summit pottery types like Pigeon, Connestee, and Pisgah, but we have a had a few surprises. For example, the sherds in the photo below have a surface treatment that we don’t recognize: extremely fine cordmarking interspersed with plain bands. These sherds are sand tempered, though two have a couple granule-sized white quartz inclusions. They were recovered from a midden that included Woodland (Pigeon and Connestee) and Mississippian (Pisgah) ceramics.

Tiny mystery sherds

Please let us know in the comments or via email (apwright@umich.edu) if you recognize this type of pottery. We’d also appreciate suggestions of regions or periods that might merit further literature review, in order to reveal their time/place of origin (if they’re non-local). It may be that these humble artifacts could tell us something really interesting about the sorts of interactions that were taking place at Garden Creek in the past.

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About Alice Wright

Alice is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Anthropology at Appalachian State University. She tweets about archaeology, Appalachia, and cats @alicepwright.
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2 Responses to Sherd ID

  1. Bennie says:

    Looks Connesteeish.

  2. Alice says:

    Thanks Bennie! Yes, based on the temper and the over-all fineness of the paste, they certainly resemble Connestee sherds. Have you encountered that surface treatment at other Connestee sites? We’ve found several more similar sherds as we continue analyzing the assemblage. If we’re lucky, their chronological contexts will pattern out in a sensible way — maybe this very fine surface treatment will provide a useful time marker for the site.

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