Poaching Pots and Making Places: Slavery and Ceramic Consumption in the Shenandoah Valley

Author(s): Matthew C. Greer

Year: 2018

Summary

The Shenandoah Valley, with its German / Scots-Irish heritage and its focus on small-scale mixed farming, formed a distinctive region within early 19th century Virginia. Here, unique ways of interacting with global markets emerged as residents profited off the sale of agricultural products while simultaneously choosing to purchase locally made earthenwares over imported wares, practices which reproduced local ethnic identities. However, many of the region’s White residents owed Black Virginians, which forces us to address other consumers in the region. Ongoing excavations at Belle Grove Plantation (Frederick County) have made clear that the Valley’s enslaved residents also purchased these same locally produced earthenwares. This paper explores how these ceramics allowed novel forms of placemaking to emerge as Black consumers ‘poached’ off of and wove themselves into the materiality of local White identities.

Cite this Record

Poaching Pots and Making Places: Slavery and Ceramic Consumption in the Shenandoah Valley. Matthew C. Greer. Presented at Society for Historical Archaeology, Albuquerque, NM. 2018 ( tDAR id: 441654)

Keywords

Spatial Coverage

min long: -129.199; min lat: 24.495 ; max long: -66.973; max lat: 49.359 ;

Individual & Institutional Roles

Contact(s): Society for Historical Archaeology

Record Identifiers

PaperId(s): 632