An Alternative Explanation for a Modified Rabbit Innominate Spatulate Tool

Author(s): Robert DeBry; Kristin Corl

Year: 2019


This is an abstract from the "Local Development and Cross-Cultural Interaction in Pre-Hispanic Southwestern New Mexico and Southeastern Arizona" session, at the 84th annual meeting of the Society for American Archaeology.

​Bone tools are not always recognized in a zooarchaeological analysis, and often once identified, the function or use is even more difficult to define. A modified rabbit innominate found by the authors in two Jornada-Mogollon sites presented here is one such example. The authors aim to both increase awareness of these tools, and present an alternative functional use than currently proposed. The form of identified tools fit well with Shaffer’s (1990) description of a modified rabbit innominate spatulate tool identified in the NAN Ranch and Pottery Mound assemblages. Use-wear analysis, suggested that these tools may have been used to process animal hides or scrape food from inside a ceramic vessel. We suggest an alternative function for this tool type; using experimental and observational techniques, we show if slightly modified, the transverse profile of the iliac blade is a perfect fit to the rim flair on several types of pottery prevalent in the Mimbres/Jornada-Mogollon region. Suggesting this tool, uncommonly, is not only representative of a manufacture process, but can also be seen as an extension of a cultural tradition selectively expressed by members of the larger population.

Cite this Record

An Alternative Explanation for a Modified Rabbit Innominate Spatulate Tool. Robert DeBry, Kristin Corl. Presented at The 84th Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Albuquerque, NM. 2019 ( tDAR id: 452217)

Spatial Coverage

min long: -123.97; min lat: 25.958 ; max long: -92.549; max lat: 37.996 ;

Record Identifiers

Abstract Id(s): 26173