This small pot is formed from about 23 layers of clay coils that were pinched on the outside to create a rough texture, but smoothed on the interior of the bowl. One suggestion is that the exterior coils absorb more heat for cooking than a pot with a smooth exterior.

Bowl 2012-10 is typed as “Pueblo III” and thus dates to about 1100 to 1150 CE, which makes it the oldest pot in the collection. The pot was advertized as “repurposed,” ground down prehistorically from a larger pot that presumably broke.

The pot was purchased from “The Prehistoric Collector,” a business that deals in ancient pottery. I asked the seller (Monica King) how she could tell that this pot had been “repurposed.” She answered:

When a vessel has been ground you can tell if it has been prehistorically or recently depending on the ‘freshness’ of the area in question. As restoration artists, we have done many tests to learn the way a shard would look if it were ground in present day then dirtied to see if it could pass the authentication test. An old grind will look worn and have a nice patina on the ‘new rim’ from having been used more once it was re-purposed. While a recent grind will be brighter or look fresh, may have modern day tool marks (files, dremels, etc) and have to have some sort of technique done to try to add this patina…………which can, depending on the person trying to fake it, be washed off or removed with acetone.

If this was a seed jar originally the rim would be on the inside with the top of the rim pointed in toward the hole. This piece has an uneven grind all the way around with no “formed” rim. Thank you so much for your questions. We own a virtual museum web site and are always looking for articles to add to the site that may explain things in an educational way. An excellent addition to this site would be a section on ground artifacts / recycling / re-purposing and how to tell if has been done prehistorically, I think by adding close-up comparison photos of what I just explained here in an article will be a nice addition to the site. The Native American cultures have re-purposed broken pottery into many things……..beside this type of recycling seen by changing vessel forms they also made scoops, putkis, gaming discs, spindle whorls, pendants, etc. As you can tell………..I am getting quite excited about the article!

My Best,


Purchase History:
Purchased on 5/20/12 on eBay from Dan & Monica King, owners of The Prehistoric Collector in Tucson, AZ.