Making Pots and Mixing Traditions…

Hello, I am Nicole Isenbarger and I am the Lab Director and ceramicist for the project. I’m currently in the field helping assist the field school and I’m having a great time working with the students and the team!

The early and short occupation span at the Lord Ashley Site gives us a rare opportunity to look at cultural interactions during the formative years of the colony. The settlement was a plantation, trading post and fort, resulting in interactions between British agents, Irish indentured servants, enslaved Africans of unknown origins, as well as free and possibly enslaved people from different Native American groups. One of the artifacts that allow us to gain a better understanding of these interactions is the locally produced earthenwares. These ceramics, commonly known as Colono Ware, refers to all non-European low fired, hand built earthenwares produced by both free and enslaved Native Americans and Africans that are found in colonial sites of the eastern United States. Culture plays a major role in pottery production as it influences and dictates how each culture adapts and changes their technology through time. An understanding of not just pottery production, but also of each individual culture that interacted at the Lord Ashley Site will allow us to see changes in the pottery at the site.

The 2011 field school excavations uncovered a total of 1073 locally produced earthenwares. Historic period Native American types that we identified include McKee Island Cord Marked, Ashley, Historic Aboriginal, and Chattahoochee Roughened wares. Lesesne Lustered and Yaughan wares are most commonly found on plantation sites of the eighteenth century and are usually attributed to African American influence and use. These are some of the earliest examples of Lesesne Lustered and Yaughan wares in South Carolina and since we know that there were fifteen adult Africans on site in 1681 we are excited that these wares could be associated Lord Ashley 2012 Report 10.31 LLwith them. But, more work needs to be done to fully understand these wares. So far, we have a general idea of the various peoples and pottery traditions that interacted with one another at the site. This year we hope to uncover a larger amount of Colono Ware that will allow us to further study the pottery traditions to possibly identify wares that show the sharing of traditions.


About nicoleisenbarger

Hello! I am an Anthropologist who has been doing Historical Archaeology in the Southeast for over 15 years. My interests include the African Diaspora, Colonoware pottery studies, early Colonial studies, and healthy living. I enjoy working out, cooking healthy foods, reading, music, traveling, and spending time with my husband and my cat Crystal (a.k.a. my personal assistant as she is normally in my lap or by my side).
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8 Responses to Making Pots and Mixing Traditions…

  1. Mateo says:

    Reblogged this on The Human Family and commented:
    Apropos my Friday post, more from the Lord Ashley site on ceramics and the possible possible implications for the study of late 17th century social groups in the Southeast.

  2. Pingback: Ceramics and Cultural Interactions on the Colonial Frontier | Day of Archaeology

  3. Fine way of telling, and pleasant article to obtain facts concerning my presentation subject matter,
    which i am going to present in college.

    • nicoleisenbarger says:

      Thank you very much for the compliment and I am glad that my research is of interest and use to you. Good luck on your presentation!!

  4. newsday says:

    Hey There. I found your blog using msn. This is a very well written article.
    I’ll be sure to bookmark it and come back to read more of your useful information.

    Thanks for the post. I will certainly comeback.

  5. Michael says:

    Hi there! I simply would like to offer you a huge thumbs up for the excellent info you’ve got here on this post. I’ll be coming back to your web site for more soon.

    • nicoleisenbarger says:

      Thank you so much, we appreciate the support and it is wonderful to see that you find our blog useful! Nicole is about to start processing the Colono Wares from last years field school excavations, so keep posted for more information. Thanks again!

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