In the Land of Lava: Petrographic and Chemical Analysis of Pottery from El Malpais National Monument

Author(s): Mary Ownby; Lori Reed

Year: 2015


Pottery found at four sites located in the eastern half of El Malpais National Monument offers significant clues into the importance of this area for the southern Chaco cultural extension. Further, the movement of pottery within the area is also significant as is information on local or non-local production. In order to begin to understand these issues, chemical and petrographic analysis was carried out on pottery mostly from the great house site of Las Ventanas. The Cibola White Ware, Socorro White Ware and White Mountain Red Ware are dominated by sherd temper that can cause difficulties for analysis. This may have resulted in the many chemical groups identified, for which petrography indicated some connections. We suggest that Cibola White Ware from the monument was made at many sites, while Socorro White Ware and White Mountain Red Ware may have had more limited production. Examination of the NAA data within a larger database also indicated such a pattern. These results have provided a preliminary hypothesis on pottery exchange in this area which further analyses will test.

SAA 2015 abstracts made available in tDAR courtesy of the Society for American Archaeology and Center for Digital Antiquity Collaborative Program to improve digital data in archaeology.

Also attached to this record is the original petrographic report from which the presentation derived. This is instead of the presentation notes as it provides more detail on the analysis and results.

Cite this Record

In the Land of Lava: Petrographic and Chemical Analysis of Pottery from El Malpais National Monument. Mary Ownby, Lori Reed. Presented at The 80th Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, San Francisco, California. 2015 ( tDAR id: 397053) ; doi:10.6067/XCV8C82BD8


Ancestral Puebloan


NAA Petrography Pottery

Geographic Keywords
North America - Southwest

Temporal Keywords
Pueblo II, Pueblo III

Spatial Coverage

min long: -108.627; min lat: 34.479 ; max long: -107.144; max lat: 35.76 ;

File Information

  Name Size Creation Date Date Uploaded Access
SAA-2015-Reed-and-Ownby_final.pdf 2.67mb Apr 27, 2015 7:42:03 AM Public
CE-06-Draft-Final-Report-Oct-2013--petro-only.pdf 793.88kb Apr 27, 2015 7:47:43 AM Public