tDAR Logo tDAR digital antiquity

Characterizing Eighteenth Century Technological Changes in Pawnee Pottery

Author(s): Donna Roper

Year: 2015

» Downloads & Basic Metadata


The pottery produced by the Pawnee of the central Great Plains of North America underwent extensive modification in the eighteenth century. Although twentieth-century archaeologists described the "early" and "late" materials, they did not adequately characterize how Pawnee potters modified their craft in terms of vessel morphology or technological practice, nor did they consider pottery function. Thus, we have no satisfactory account of this change. Situated in the context of technological changes during the contact era, this study uses petrography, vessel morphometrics, pXRF, and FTIR to address how the pottery changed. The analysis reveals that the introduction of metal vessels did not lead to a phase-out of native pottery, but rather that the functions formerly performed by pottery alone were divided between metal and earthenware. The appearance of the material was so markedly different because manufacturing technology and form were modified to facilitate pottery’s revised role in foodways.

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. If you are the author of this presentation you may upload your paper, poster, presentation, or associated data (up to 3 files/30MB) for free. Please visit for instructions and more information.

This Resource is Part of the Following Collections

Cite this Record

Characterizing Eighteenth Century Technological Changes in Pawnee Pottery. Donna Roper. Presented at The 80th Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, San Francisco, California. 2015 ( tDAR id: 397061)


Spatial Coverage

min long: -113.95; min lat: 30.751 ; max long: -97.163; max lat: 48.865 ;

Arizona State University The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation National Science Foundation National Endowment for the Humanities Society for American Archaeology Archaeological Institute of America