SAS Bulletin Society for Archaeological Sciences Volume 23 number 3/4 Winter 2000

SAS Bulletin Society for Archaeological Sciences Volume 23 number 3/4 Winter 2000
SAS Bulletin
Society for Archaeological Sciences
Volume 23 number 3/4
From the Editor
We bring you this final issue of the Millennium
with the news that archaeological science is
alive and well, having made major
contributions in recent decades to our
understanding of past peoples in many important areas.
Chronometric dating, including radiocarbon, radiopotassium,
and luminescence dating, as well as dendrochronology and
obsidian hydration dating, is the most widely applied use of
scientific techniques to archaeological problems. Provenance
studies, using petrographic, trace element, and/or isotope ratio
analysis, have revolutionized our knowledge of trade and
distribution patterns of obsidian, chert and flint, greenstones,
and marble; of ceramics and glass; of copper, lead and silver
metals; and of organic materials including amber, bitumen,
and ivory. Materials analysis, using electron as well as optical
microscopy, has continued to provide detailed knowledge of
the subtleties of manufacturing processes and artifact usage,
for example alloying and surface enrichment of metals, and
of use-wear and edge damage on a variety of materials.
Zooarchaeological and archaeobotanical studies, including the
recovery and analysis of macro- and microfauna,
macrobotanical remains, pollen, phytoliths, and starch grains,
have allowed detailed reconstruction of dietary menus and
environmental settings. Bone chemistry analyses have made
significant contributions to reconstructing subsistence beginning
with our earliest hominid ancestors, to documenting mobility
and migration patterns, and to establishing genetic relationships
at the individual, family, and population levels. Finally, the use
of remote sensing methods including ground penetrating radar
and proton magnetometry have helped locate and document
subsurface remains while the microscopic and chemical
analysis of soils and sediments has allowed us to recreate
taphonomic processes and human activities.
Significantly, the contributions of archaeological science
or archaeometry are now more widely recognized by
colleagues in the humanities and social sciences, while at the
same time archaeological applications are more often seen as
worthwhile activities for physical scientists rather than
something to be done in one’s spare time. Archaeometric
research is funded by a variety of government and private
sources, with funding programs specifically for archaeological
science existing in the US, Europe, and Asia. In addition, more
Winter 2000
scholars are receiving formal training in both archaeology and
science, which has resulted in better research designs, and
fuller integration of scientific data with humanistic
interpretation. A number of universities, especially in Britain,
have either departments or programs in archaeological science.
The Society for Archaeological Sciences was founded in
1977 with 100 charter members; since then, our membership
has grown to as many as 700, while sister organizations in
several countries have also been established. There are now
numerous groups devoted to specific materials, for example
the Association for the Study of Marble and Other Stones in
Antiquity, the International Association for Obsidian Studies,
the Historical Metallurgy Society, and the Society for Phytolith
Research. The journal Archaeometry was first published in
(continued on page 7)
In This Issue
MIT & LLNL Positions
LAC-Wisconsin Awards & Lehigh Fellowships
Journal of Archaeological Science IDEAL
Digital Archaeological Map (A. Sarris)
Luminescence and ESR Dating (J. Rink)
SAS Symposia at SAAs
Conference Calls for Papers
Archaeological Ceramics (C.C. Kolb)
Book Reviews (M. Glascock)
Beyond the Bloom: Bloom Refining and Iron
Artifact Production... (E.F. Heite)
Seriation, Stratigraphy and Index Fossils: The
Backbone of Archaeological Dating
(A.R. Millard)
The Maritime Heritage of the Cayman Islands
(W.E. Boyd)
Indians of the Greater Southeast: Historical
Archaeology and Ethnohistory (T. Foster)
Science and Technology in Historic Preservation
(J.H. Labadie & J.A. Labadie)
Interpretations of Native North American Life
(R.A. Bucko)
The Archaeometallurgy of the Asian Old World
(D. Killick)
Meetings Calendar (S. Mulholland)
page 2
SAS Bulletin
CMRAE (MIT) Laboratory
Supervisor/Technical Instructor
The Center for Materials Research in Archaeology and
Ethnology (CMRAE) at MIT invites applications for the position
of Laboratory Supervisor/Technical Instructor at the CMRAE
Graduate Laboratory. The Graduate Laboratory is the facility
where all CMRAE graduate instruction in the materials science
of archaeological materials takes place and where graduate
students carry out Ph.D. research in materials and archaeology.
Supervisory responsibilities include:
Instruction: one-to-one laboratory supervision and
instruction in the materials analysis of archaeological and
ethnographic materials; work with faculty in the design and
teaching of year-long graduate subjects in materials and
archaeology; preparation of laboratory instruction manuals;
equipment maintenance and design
Research and documentation: work with faculty/staff on
research projects, including opportunity to conduct independent,
ongoing research; develop, maintain, and document reference
collections of archaeological materials; computer-aided
documentation of all procedures.
Applicants must be skilled microscopists, with considerable
experience in either or both metallography and work with the
polarizing microscope. Expert darkroom skills are required.
Teaching experience is essential. Expertise in handling a variety
of personal computer programs is required.
Applicants must have the MA/MS degree or equivalent
experience. Please send a detailed letter outlining technical
and research training and experience and teaching experience,
a CV, and the names and addresses (including email addresses)
of 3 references before 1 June to:
Professor Heather Lechtman, MIT, Room 8-138,
Cambridge, MA 02139.
For information about CMRAE, visit our website: <http://>
Postdoctoral Research Scientist
Terrestrial Paleoclimate and Paleoecology
Center for AMS
Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory
This is an advance posting of an upcoming position at the
Center for AMS, LLNL and as of yet does not have an EV#
assigned to it. For those interested, please check the LLNL
website in the next few weeks. LLNL now only accepts
electronic CVs and applications. We at CAMS however, prefer
the old-fashioned method and if you do decide to apply
electronically, please send a copy of your CV, cover-letter, and
the names of three potential references to us.
Nature and Scope of Position
The Center for Accelerator Mass Spectrometry (CAMS)
at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) is seeking
a postdoctoral research scientist in terrestrial paleoclimate and
paleoecology. The appointment(s) will be made for 2 years
initially with the possibility of a 1-year extension.
The overall CAMS mission is the utilization of a wide range
of isotopic and ion beam analytical methods to solve problems
in basic science research and technology development.
Accelerator Mass Spectrometry (AMS) measures rare, longlived isotopes for research in biomedical, earth, and
environmental sciences. Our natural radiocarbon research
program is engaged in modern process studies in the terrestrial
and oceanic realms documenting and understanding the spatial
and temporally varying sinks and sources of CO2 to the
atmosphere. We are also studying natural climate variability in
order to develop paleoclimate records with sufficient resolution
and time-control to understand the processes governing seasonal
to millenial to glacial-interglacial climate change. We work
closely with various modelling groups both in-house to LLNL
(ASD & PCMDI) and the broader external scientific
community, but our primary focus is the acquisition and
interpretation of real-world data.
The successful applicant will work within the geosciences
radiocarbon group as part of an interdisciplinary team of LLNL
researchers and external collaborators. The primary
responsibility of this position is to develop experimental
programs to explore natural climate variability under different
boundary conditions. The main focus will be to use 14C AMS
measurements in conjunction with paleoclimate archives and
proxy data to document climate variability in the terrestrial
environment. This position requires a recent Ph.D in ecology,
biology, geology, biogeochemistry or related field. Experience
in sample preparation and interpretation of stable isotope and
14C analyses is desired.
Applicants will be expected to be able to obtain a P
clearance status. Contact:
Center for Accelerator Mass Spectrometry Dept. of
Ocean Sciences, UC/LLNL L-397 UC - Santa Cruz, 7000
East Avenue 1156 High Street, Livermore, CA 94551 Santa
Cruz, CA 95064. tel 925 422-1753; fax 925 423-7884.
International Archaeometry Symposium
Abstracts Online
Abstracts of the proceedings of the recent International
Archaeometry Symposium in Mexico City are now
available on line through the conference web site at:
and mirrored as “.pdf” files on the SAS web pages at:
Winter 2000
SAS Bulletin
Research Awards in Archaeology
Laboratory for Archaeological Chemistry
University of Wisconsin-Madison
The Laboratory for Archaeological Chemistry at the
University of Wisconsin-Madison announces the annual winners
of research award grants, intended for graduate students in
archaeology. The lab strongly believes that many major
discoveries in archaeology in future years will come from
laboratory investigations. In that light, the training of graduate
students in analytical methods and their application is essential.
This award is intended to further those goals. The awards are
offered to support and encourage the application of chemical
analyses in solving archaeological problems. Applications for
the annual awards are due January 1 each year. More
information on the Laboratory for Archaeological Chemistry
and the Research Awards is available at
larch/aclab/award.htm. Awards were made this year for two
outstanding proposals:
Stacie M. King, University of California-Berkeley, will
analyze sediment samples from prehistoric household in coastal
Oaxaca, Mexico, for information on activity areas and household
organization, as part of her dissertation research.
E. Christian Wells, Arizona State University, will analyze
sediment samples from the plaza area at the site of El Coyote
in Honduras as part of his dissertation research. The chemical
data will be used to address questions concerning the location
of food production, consumption, and deposition in the plaza
area of the site.
Center of Excellence for Artifact Analysis
Department of Materials Science
and Engineering, Lehigh University
A Center of Excellence for Artifact Analysis has been
established in the Department of Materials Science and
Engineering at Lehigh University. The program will be fully
funded as of July of this year, but we already have one graduate
student funded by a fellowship from this program. There are
two aspects to the program: one is to provide laboratory support
to small museums and university archaeology/anthropology
groups who do not have normal access to laboratory analysis,
or funding to perform this analysis.
The foundation supporting our endeavor will provide funds
to us in order to aid groups who are in need of such laboratory
assistance. The second aspect of the program is to provide
fellowship support to graduate students interested in pursuing
research in archaeometallurgy. The first project that has already
been started is concerned with materials and fabrication
technology for ancient astrolabes.
page 3
The second fellowship (which we are now trying to find
an applicant for) will be focused on materials and fabrication
technology for either pre-Colombian or Asian metals, depending
on the interests of the foundation and the applicant. The
instrumental emphasis for this project will be the use of a variety
of electron microscopy methods (SEM,EPMA,TEM) and
surface analytical methods (mainly XPS). The electron
microscopy lab at Lehigh has world recognized expertise and
leading-edge facilities. Financial support will fully cover stipend
and tuition, and is aimed for a two (or three) year graduate
research program. If you know of an interested party, please
have them send a resume to:
Professor Michael Notis
Department of Materials Science and Engineering
Lehigh University
e-mail: [email protected]
Journal of Archaeological Science IDEAL
Academic Press takes pride in our long standing relationship
with the Society for Archaeological Sciences and its members.
We know many of you, through your membership dues, receive
the printed version of the Journal of Archaeological Science.
Recently you asked about access to the electronic version of
the journals. Some of you are no doubt affiliated with institutions
which subscribe to IDEAL, the International Digital Electronic
Access Library, and therefore would already have access.
To determine if your institution subscribes to the full-text
articles on IDEAL, please view a list of licensed library
consortia at: If
your institution is not on the list, you may wish to recommend
that they subscribe. Please let us know which of your institutions
do not subscribe, and we will also contact them.
IDEAL provides online full-text access to over 250
scientific, technical and medical journals, including JAS. The
Journal of Archaeological Science utilizes IDEALFirst
technology which enables individual articles to be published in
advance of the printed issues.
IDEAL also provides the following services to all readers
of the Journal of Archaeological Science:
IDEALAlert - use this free email service to receive tables
of contents for the Journal of Archaeological Science. Follow
the email links to view article abstracts or utilize the email alert
message to access the full-text from institutions subscribing to
IDEAL. Register today at:
IDEALOnDemand - is a pay-per-view service that provides
individual access to the full-text of any article on IDEAL.
IDEALOnDemand provides instant access to articles appearing
in the Journal of Archaeological Science. Each electronic
order allows access to one article and is payable by credit
page 4
SAS Bulletin
New Paleoclimate Discussion List
CALIB 4.3 Released
You are cordially invited to help launch the new Paleoclimate
list-server, which is designed to provide a forum for Internet
discussions and announcements among Paleoclimatologists
throughout the world. The list is primarily for use by
paleoclimatic researchers and scientists. Of primary emphasis
are periods of the recent past where data from the paleoclimatic
record are of particular value to the modern climate community.
Thus the time periods of primary emphasis are Quaternary,
especially the Holocene, although discussions of earlier periods
are not discouraged.
Appropriate subjects for discussion might include:
- new proxy and historical data availability
- national and international meetings and symposia
- national and international programs and program news
- funding opportunities
- employment opportunities
- new paleoclimate-related publications
- announcements of paleoclimatology or related courses
- paleoclimate research initiatives
- controversial topics in paleoclimatology
- recent reports on paleoclimate research
- paleo in the news
At this time, this is an unmoderated list and is also available
as a weekly digest (see below). However, only subscribers
may post messages to the list. We encourage vigorous
discussions and controversial topics as well as respectful
To Subscribe to the Paleoclimate-List, please send an email message to [email protected], with the following
message (only!) in the body of the text:
subscribe paleoclimate-list <your-full-name>
Example: subscribe paleoclimate-list Albert Einstein
We also offer a weekly digest version which you can sign
up for immediately by sending [email protected] the
following message:
subscribe paleoclimate-list <your-full-name>
set paleoclimate-list mail digest
Once you subscribe a more detailed message will be sent
to you explaining in more detail the digest options, how to unsub,
If you have any questions, check out Web site at: http:// or send e-mail
to: [email protected]
We’re really excited about the potential for this list and
welcome your participation and ideas on how to “crosspollinate” between the many disciplines and backgrounds in
the paleo world.
Mark McCaffrey
C. Mark Eakin
John Keltner
NOAA/National Geophysical Data Center
325 Broadway E/GC
Boulder, CO 80305-3328 USA
Internet: [email protected]
The latest version has been released of the radiocarbon
calibration program CALIB 4.3 for Windows. The program
can now handle up to 3000 samples. Printing of the graphics
has also been simplified. The program can be downloaded from
our new Internet site Please follow the
CALIB link to the downloadable versions and note the
instructions for downloading and decompressing the Windows
version there. A Macintosh version for G3/G4 platforms is also
A marine reservoir correction database has also been
developed, funded by the Institute for Aegean Prehistory. The
database is also accessible at and is intended
for use with radiocarbon calibration programs.
Digital Archaeological Map
Apostolos Sarris, Associate Editor
The Laboratory of Geophysical - Satellite Remote Sensing
& Archaeo-environment of the Institute for Mediterranean
Studies (Foundation of Research & Technology, Hellas FORTH) has created a Digital Archaeological Map of Lasithi
District, East Crete, which is available on the web: http:// or directly to the map: http://
The website operates in a GIS environment that integrates
topographic, geological and landuse maps, SPOT and Landsat
images. More than 900 sites have been registered in the map.
About two hundred have been accurately mapped with GPS
units. The website is accompanied by an archaeological data
base (that includes bibliography and photos), which can operate
independently of the GIS-based map. One has the ability to
search the database and print out reports for all the sites
registered in it. You can also make you own contribution of
data (new entries) which will be used for the renewal of the
data in the future.
Your feedback is always welcome to help us improve
and enhance the website.
Luminescence and Electron Spin
Resonance Dating
Jack Rink, Associate Editor
Since the advent of thermoluminescence dating of
archaeological ceramic materials in the 1960’s, great advances
have taken place in the use of radiation exposure dating for
archaeological and anthropological samples. Dating of the time
of last light exposure of sediment grains has moved on from
Winter 2000
SAS Bulletin
the thermoluminescence technique in the 1970’s to that of
optical luminescence dating in the 1980’s and 1990’s, which
has led to great improvements in both the resolution and
accuracy of luminescence dating. Known-age samples as
young as 100 years have now been dated securely dated,
extending the time range of the method to below that of the
radiocarbon method, while the long-range limit is generally
about 300 to 400 thousand years. Tooth enamel and carbonate
materials are now routinely used to determine the burial age
of their host sediments using the electron spin resonance
technique, with a dating range of between about 10,000 and
300,000 years for carbonates (e.g. mollusc shell) and between
about 10,000 to 2,000,000 years for tooth enamel. The great
value of all of these techniques is that they can be used where
volcanic materials are absent beyond the 40,000 year longrange limit of radiocarbon, and that they can be used to
calibrate geomagnetic polarity timescale studies of sediments.
10 th International Conference on Luminescence and
Electron Spin Resonance Dating
New developments in the application of electron spin
resonance and luminescence dating in the field of archaeology
will be a highlight of an upcoming conference that is open to
all, and which is being held for the first time ever in North
America. The Desert Research Institute invites you to the
10 th International Conference on Luminescence and
Electron Spin Resonance Dating (LED 2002), to be held at
the University of Nevada-Reno, in Reno, 24-28 June, 2002.
LED 2002 continues the series begun in 1978 in Oxford, U.K.,
and follows LED99 (Rome, 1999), and LED96 (Canberra,
LED 2002 will bring together experts from around the
world in the field of trapped-electron dating (luminescence
and electron spin resonance dating). The topics range from
novel and original applications to the dating of heated and
unheated Quaternary geological/geomorphological and
archeological materials, through fundamental studies of the
basic physical phenomena and related dosimetry, to advances
in equipment technology.
All interested persons can access information at the
conference WEB site,
International Symposium on New Strategy of ESR
Dosimetry and Dating
October 25-27, 2001 at Osaka University, Japan
The fields of electron spin resonance (ESR) dating,
radiation dosimetry and imaging have progressed remarkably
in the last two decades. We think it a good occasion to
summarize the quarter century of ESR dating and half a
century of ESR dosimetry, especially after the book “New
Applications of Electron Spin Resonance-Dating, Dosimetry
and Microscopy” (World Scientific, Singapore, 1994) and
discuss the strategy at the start of 21st century to stimulate
our fields.
The 3rd Asia-Pacific EPR symposium will be hosted by
Dr. Kawamori at Kansei Gakuin University and will be held
page 5
at Kobe University from October 29-November 2, 2001. There
is a session on ESR dosimetry and earth science applications.
Hence, if you could participate in this Symposium or if you had
a chance to come to Japan, it is good to attend a satellite EPR
dosimetry symposium meeting organized by ESR Applied
Metrology Workshop in Osaka.
The First International Symposium on ESR Dating including
dosimetry was held in 1985 at Ube-Akiyoshi and supported by
Technical College of Yamaguchi University under the auspices
of the Ministry of Education, Japan. The second and fourth was
at GFS, Germany, the third at NIS, USA and the fourth, Russia.
There were requests that the fifth should be held at Osaka
University, but the sixth is scheduled at Denver, Colorado, USA
with the emphasis on biodosimetry.
The Japanese Workshop of ESR Applied Metrology, in which
researchers of optical dating are also participating, will host the
symposium by inviting a small number of young researchers
and students from abroad. The selection will be made from the
quality of the submitted abstract. However, the budget is
extremely tight. We are not sure whether we can get any support
from agencies at the time of drastic changes of university system
in Japan. Hence, participants are requested to apply their travel
grant and stipends from their own countries in principle. We do
our best to help excellent researchers having financial. There
will also be an Abstract Prize which covers the full or partial
travel expenses to present the work in Osaka.
We have decided not to have a big formal International
Symposium, but to have an open forum to highlight ESR
dosimetry and applications to interdisciplinary fields. This should
be an informal, scientifically pleasant and stimulating, gettogetherness type two and half days symposium before the 3rd
Asia Pacific EPR/ESR Symposium. The session of the ESR
dating and dosimetry in the Asia Pacific Symposium will be
arranged for your convenience.
Scope of the Symposium
Technical details of ESR dating, dosimetry and some imaging
and their noble applications are main subjects in this symposium.
Works on optical dating will be mostly presented in poster sessions.
However, noble works especially done with ESR will be presented
in the oral session. New approaches for identification of
irradiated foodstuffs by EPR Followings are the main topics of
the symposium.
1) Tokai JCO, Chernobyl accidents and A-bomb radiation. Special
lecture on JCO accident and its dosimetry, Chernobyl,
Semipalachinsk, etc.
2) Radiation effects of minerals and basic studies on waste
depository in sediments. What ESR and optical methods can
do to assess the safety of radioactive waste.
3) ESR and optical dating in geosciences toward 21st century.
Summary of ESR & Optical dating in geosciences in 20th
century and new prospects.
4) ESR and optical dating and dosimetry in planetary sciences.
Dosimetry in space missions for astronauts and noble methods
in planetary material survey
page 6
SAS Bulletin
5) ESR imaging and new spectrometers with applications from
semiconductors to fossils. Review of ESR imaging hardware
and their applications for interdisciplinary studies
6) New materials ESR dosimeters and for food irradiation
monitoring. Tissue equivalent alkali-organic acids compounds
for dosimeter and new methods of monitoring.
We recommend you to participate in the Asia-Pacific in
which some general review talks on ESR dosimetry and dating
are also scheduled. If you are interested to participate in this
symposium and the 3rd Pacific EPR Symposium, please let us
know by reply e-mail. Deadline for the application to abstract
prize: July 15, 2001. Deadline for the submission of abstract:
August 31, 2001.
2001 International Symposium on ESR Dosimetry and
Daring (Oct.25-27, 2001) Society of ESR Applied Metrology,
Department of Earth and Space Science, Osaka University, 11 Machikaneyama, Toyonaka, Osaka 560-0043, Japan, Prof.
Motoji +81-6-6850-5490; fax +81-6-6850-5540; email:
[email protected]; web: http://pumice
SAS Symposia at the
Society for American Archaeology
Resolution & Refinement: Leading Edge Research in
Archaeological Chemistry
The SAS-sponsored symposium ‘Resolution & Refinement:
Leading Edge Research in Archaeological Chemistry’ will take
place Sunday morning, April 22, at the 66th annual meeting of
the Society for American Archaeology in New Orleans. The
session is co-organized by Kelly Knudson (University of
Wisconsin at Madison) and David Meiggs (University of
Wisconsin at Madison). T. Douglas Price (University of
Wisconsin at Madison) and Robert Tykot (University of South
Florida) will serve as discussants for the ten papers that will be
presented in the session.
Over the past twenty years, archaeological chemistry has
become an increasingly valuable sub-discipline in archaeology,
aided by greater access to instrumentation, the development
of novel techniques—like organic residue and strontium isotope
analysis—and smaller sample sizes. While the greater
sensitivity and analytical power of such techniques are
undeniable, this symposium will focus on the ways in which
diverse approaches are providing greater resolution and
increasingly refined data to answer archaeological questions.
More specifically, emphasis will be on the use of innovative
techniques to illuminate a more refined scope in archaeological
research or obtain greater resolution in an archaeological
problem by application of an established technique in a novel
way. The participants in this symposium will describe current
state-of-the-art research in archaeological chemistry and
hopefully stimulate discussion on the continuing, unique
contributions of archaeological chemistry to the knowledge of
ancient cultural dynamics.
The papers to be presented are as follows: ‘Identifying
Chemical Activity Residues on Prehistoric House-floors: A
Methodology and Rationale for Multi-Elemental
Characterization of Anthropogenic Sediments’ (William D.
Middleton, The Field Museum of Natural History), ‘Scanning
Electron Microprobe Analysis of Ceramic Clay Fractions and
Clay-Rich Sediments from the Malpaso Valley, Northwest
Mexico’ (Christopher P. Garraty and E. Christian Wells, Arizona
State University), ‘Reconstructing Trade and Interaction in
Oceania with Inductively Coupled Plasma-Mass Spectrometry
(ICP-MS) of Lapita Ceramics’ (Michael Cruz and Douglas J.
Kennett, California State University-Long Beach, and Atholl
Anderson, Australian National University), ‘How Did
Mississippians Prepare Maize?: A Compound Specific Carbon
Isotopic Study of Absorbed Pottery Residues from Several
Mississippi Valley Sites’ (Nora Reber, Harvard University, and
Richard Evershed, University of Bristol), ‘The Potential of Fatty
Acid Profiles to Distinguish Different Species of African Rices
and Trace Its Domestication’ (David Meiggs and Shawn
Murray, University of Wisconsin at Madison), ‘The Use of
Alkaline Earth Ratios in Human Skeletal Tissues to Determine
Geographical Origins’ (James H. Burton and T. Douglas Price,
University of Wisconsin at Madison, Lori Wright, Texas A&M
University, and Peter Rank, University of Wisconsin at
Madison), ‘Tiwanaku Residential Mobility as Determined by
Strontium and Lead Isotope Analysis’ (Kelly Knudson and T.
Douglas Price, University of Wisconsin at Madison, Jane E.
Buikstra, University of New Mexico, and Deborah Blom,
Vanderbilt University), ‘Lead Isotopes in Skeletons from Early
Neolithic Germany’ (R. Alexander Bentley, T. Douglas Price,
and James H. Burton, University of Wisconsin at Madison),
‘Stable Carbon, Nitrogen and Sulphur Isotope Evidence of
Human Mobility in Prehistoric Europe’ (Michael P. Richards,
University of Oxford), and ‘Stable Nitrogen Isotopes Reveal
the Age of Weaning and Growth Events at the Medieval Site
of Wharram Percy, England’ (Benjamin T. Fuller, Michael P.
Richards, and Simon Mays, University of Oxford).
Cultural Resource Management and Archaeometry:
Entering the Mainstream
A poster symposium entitled “Cultural Resource
Management and Archaeometry: Entering the Mainstream,”
organized by Michael D. Glascock and Robert Speakman and
sponsored by the SAS, will be held at the SAA Annual Meeting
on Friday afternoon April 20, 2001 from 1:00 to 5:00.
The posters include: Geological Constraints on Stone Tool
and Debitage Morphology at the Sage’s Crossing Site, Unadilla
Valley, New York (Carol A. Raemsch, Hartgen Archeological
Associates, Inc. and Philip C. La Porta, La Porta & Associates,
Geological Consultants); The White and the Gray: Geochemical
Analysis of Midwestern Chert (Robert Speakman, University
of Missouri, Michael D. Glascock, University of Missouri, and
Jack Ray, Center for Archaeological Research, SMSU);
Landsat Thematic Mapper as a Regional Mapping Tool in the
West Saddle Mountains, Grant County, Washington (Daniel
Alden, Central Washington University and Patrick McCutcheon,
Central Washington University); Archaeometry and Cultural
Resource Management at Mount Rainier National Park (Steve
Winter 2000
SAS Bulletin
Dampf, Trina Amadisto, and Patrick McCutcheon, Central
Washington University); Archaeometric Techniques for
Pedestrian Survey in the Saddle Mountains, Central
Washington. (Tucker Orvald, Central Washington University);
Archaeometry to the Rescue at Bone Cave: The Interpretation
of a Severly Disturbed Lava Tube Site in Central Oregon
(Jeffrey Ferguson, University of Colorado, Boulder);
Geochemical Sourcing of Obsidian Artifacts to Support CRM
(Candace A. Sall, Michael D. Glascock, and Robert Speakman,
University of Missouri); Pots from Down the Road: Investigating
Kayenta Anasazi Ceramic Production and Exchange with
Electron Microprobe Analysis (Kimberly Spurr and Phil Geib,
Navajo Nation Archaeology Department, and James Wittke,
Northern Arizona University); Application of Luminescence
Dating in CRM Projects (Mustafa Aksel Casson and James
K. Feathers, University of Washington); Rock Magnetic
Approaches to Archaeological Investigations (William C.
Johnson, University of Kansas); The Use of Neutron Activation
Analysis in the Development of Regional Contexts for
Archaeological Sites in Western Pennsylvania (Beverly Chiarulli,
Indiana U of Pennsylvania, Paul Raber, Heberling Associates,
Christopher M. Stevenson, Virginia DOT, and Michael D.
Glascock, University of Missouri); Illinois/Chiwere Siouan
Interaction in the Late Protohistoric Midcontinent (Kathleen
L. Ehrhardt, New York University, Larry D. Grantham,
Missouri Department of Natural Resources, and Robert
Speakman, University of Missouri); Prehistoric Quarry
Landscapes and Cultural Resource Management (Linda Sohl,
Lamont-Doherty-Earth Observatory, Philip La Porta, Graduate
Center, City University of New York, and Margaret Brewer,
University of Kentucky); Instrumental Neutron Activation
Analysis on Sherds Recovered from South-Central New
Mexico: The Pinon Data Recovery Project (Mark C. Slaughter
and Chris Lowry, Geo-Marine, Inc.); and Chemical Analyses
of Some Cultural Sediments from Cultural Resources
Management Projects in the eastern United States (Donald
Thieme, Geoarchaeology Research Associates).
From the Editor (continued)
1958, and beginning in 2001 will appear quarterly (and for the
first time on-line). The Journal of Archaeological Science
was established in 1974, and now has 12 issues per year. More
specialized journals devoted to scientific applications in
archaeology include Radiocarbon (1959-); Geoarchaeology
(1986-); Archaeological Prospection (1994-); and Ancient
Biomolecules (1997-).
In addition to journal publications, there has been a steady
stream of books devoted to archaeological science in recent
years. Many of these have been conference proceedings,
including five volumes from the Archaeological Chemistry
symposia held at American Chemical Society meetings; five
volumes from the Materials Issues in Art and Archaeology
symposia held at Materials Research Society meetings; three
page 7
from the Archaeological Science conferences in Britain; seven
from the Italian Archeometria meetings; five from the
Australasian Archaeometry meetings; and at least a dozen from
the International Symposia on Archaeometry. A number of
archaeological science texts have appeared since Michael Tite’s
landmark 1972 publication Methods of Physical Examination
in Archaeology, including Leute’s Archaeometry: An
Introduction to Physical Methods in Archaeology and the
History of Art (1987); Pollard and Heron’s Archaeological
Chemistry (1996); Rapp & Hill’s Geoarchaeology: The EarthScience Approach to Archaeological Interpretation (1998);
Herz & Garrison’s Geological Methods for Archaeology
(1998); Julian Henderson’s Science and Archaeology of
Materials: An Investigation of Inorganic Materials (2000),
and forthcoming in 2001, Goldberg, Holliday and Ferring’s edited
volume Earth Sciences and Archaeology, and Brothwell and
Pollard’s edited volume Handbook of Archaeological
Sciences. Nearly all of these publications have been - or will
be - reviewed in the SAS Bulletin. Many other monographs,
edited volumes, and conference proceedings have been
published on specific materials or topics, including dating
methods, ceramics, metals, glass, obsidian, chert and flint, marble,
phytoliths, shells, zooarchaeology, bone chemistry, organic
residues, DNA, geoarchaeology, soils, and remote sensing. SAS
has published five volumes in our own Advances in
Archaeological and Museum Science series, and are actively
seeking new proposals and manuscripts (please contact one of
the editors).
There are now so many conferences either devoted to or
with specific sessions on scientific applications in archaeology
that it is not possible to attend them all. Besides the many more
narrowly focused meetings and symposia listed in our 2001
Calendar are the 8th Giornata “Le Science della Terra e
l’Archeometria (Rome, February 22-24); Archaeometry in
Europe in the Third Millennium (Rome, March 29-30); the
Archaeological Chemistry Symposium, held approximately
every five years at the American Chemical Society Meeting
(Chicago, August 26-30); the annual British meeting,
Archaeological Science 2001 (Newcastle upon Tyne, August
29-September 1); the multi-day Archeometry theme session
of the International Union of Pre- and Protohistoric Sciences,
held every five years (Liege, Belgium, September 2-8); and
the multi-day symposium Materials Issues in Art and
Archaeology VI, held at the Materials Research Society Fall
Meeting, also about every five years (Boston, November 2630). With some university travel support, and the newly adjusted
dates of the Newcastle meeting so that it doesn’t overlap with
UISPP, I expect to participate in the last four.
With all this research, publication, conference, and
educational activity, it is impossible for most archaeologists and
archeometrists to keep up. The SAS provides an important
role by announcing meetings, reviewing relevant publications
and important conferences, publishing laboratory profiles and
research reports, and otherwise serving as a clearing house of
information through our Bulletin, our website, and the SASnet listserv. But we need your help. Please send us your news,
including faculty, post-doctoral, and student job listings,
page 8
SAS Bulletin
conference announcements, funding opportunities, etc. Forward
us an occasional report of your research activities, laboratory
report, or a short review of a conference or symposium you
recently attended. Also send us announcements and requests
for books to review - and volunteer to review them.
I anticipate seeing many of you in 2001. When I do, I may
make a more personal request for you to contribute in some
way, so be prepared. With best wishes for the new millennium,
Robert H. Tykot, Editor
Call for Papers:
Archaeological Science 2001
The Archaeological Science 2001 conference will be held
29th August - 1st September 2001 at the University of
Newcastle upon Tyne, UK. Details of the conference and a
preliminary programme can be found at:
geography/conference/conference.html. Registration forms
(PDF) can be downloaded from the website. For further details
contact: [email protected]
Call for Papers: Materials Issues in
Art and Archaeology VI
The Fall 2001 Meeting of the Materials Research Society,
Nov. 26-30th, Boston, MA, USA, will feature a symposium
(no. II) on Materials Issues in Art and Archaeology. Studies
are solicited that use the methods and techniques of materials
science and engineering to understand the degradation, and
promote the long-term preservation, of material culture, i.e.
works of art, culturally significant artifacts, and archaeological
remains and sites. Preserving cultural heritage extends beyond
artifact preservation to developing a critical understanding of
how ancient people used technology and craft to solve problems
of survival and organization and to make symbols or
representations of what was important in their world, especially
for its maintenance, longevity and beautification. Paper
contributions of empirical studies are solicited that:
* Reconstruct and interpret ancient technologies, especially
through studies of workshop and industrial remains
* Study the nature and diversity of the ancient landscape as a
background to human cultural evolution through analysis of
residual physical traces (biogeochemistry),
* Recreate an understanding of the environment, resources,
and other constraints on the practice of technologies
(resource survey, site catchement analysis and site formation
* Characterize the cultural context and the knowledge
necessary and sufficient to practice, innovate and transmit
know-how for individual cultural survival and achievement
(science, technology and society),
* Apply new, cutting-edge methods or old techniques of analysis
in new ways to material cultural problems (archaeometry),
* Promote an understanding of degradation, weathering and
corrosion that leads to stabilization and long-term preseration
of material culture (conservation science),
* Present successful experiment that incorporate studies of
ancient technical know-how into modern K-12 and university
curricula (ancient materials outreach).
On the last day of the conference, a Pyrotechnology
Workshop and Demonstration is planned in which experiments
will be conducted in the 3500-year-old technologies of Egyptian
faience, faience inlay, glass core vessel manufacture, and I the
technologies of iron smelting and glassblowing. The latter
experiments are to be framed in a 2000-year old Roman period
Submission Procedure
Submit abstracts and register at
fall2001/ between May 19 and June 19th, 2001. If you have
questions, you may pre-email your abstract to:
[email protected]
If you are unable to access electronic submission, the
deadline for abstracts submitted via fax or mail is June 5th.
Fax to both Vandiver at (301)238-3700, and MRS at (724) 7798313. The MRS address is Materials Research Society, 506
Keystone Dr., Warrendale, PA 15086-7573 USA, Tel 724-7793004.
Publication Procedure
Nov. 12th is the deadline for electronic paper submission.
Papers generally are 6 pages, but because of the interdisciplinary
nature of this topic and the desirability of multi-faceted
interpretation, papers twice that length will be entertained.
Instructions will be posted on the website, but at least one figure
should show the objects being presented, and another their
archaeological context, if possible. Contact Vandiver if your
paper requires color, or if you are willing to act as a reviewer.
Symposium Organizers
Pamela B. Vandiver and Martha Goodway, Smithsonian
Center for Materials Research and Education, 4210 Silver Hill
Rd., Suitland, MD 20746, USA email: [email protected];
[email protected]; tel (301) 238-3700 x-162 or x-164;
fax (301) 238-3709.
Jennifer Mass, SUNY Buffalo, Art Conservation Dept.,
Rockwell Hall 230, 1300 Elmwood Ave., Buffalo, NY 14222
USA; email: [email protected]; tel 716 8785025; fax 716 878-5039
James R. Druzik, The Getty Conservation Institute, 1200
Getty Center Dr., Los Angeles, CA 90292 USA; email
[email protected]; tel 310 440-6825; fax 310 440-7711.
Winter 2000
SAS Bulletin
Call for Papers: New Discoveries
from Materials Science in the
Archaeology of the Near East
Paper proposals are requested for this session of the annual
meeting of the American Schools of Oriental Research
(ASOR), to be held in Boulder, Colorado, November 14-17,
2001.This session welcomes submissions in which materials
science techniques are used to assist in the interpretation of
the archaeological record. Papers should focus on the
archaeological problem, the technique(s) selected to investigate
the problem, the data acquired, and how the results are used
within the archaeological context. Studies on both organic and
inorganic remains will be considered, especially those that deal
with issues of environmental change, ancient technology, trade
patterns, demography, and subsistence.
One session is planned for 4-6 speakers. Papers will be
limited to 20-25 minutes.
Session Chair: Elizabeth S. Friedman, Ph.D.,University of
Chicago. email: [email protected]
Abstracts are limited to 250 words and should be emailed
to the session chair. Deadline for abstracts is April 1st, 2001
but the session chair would welcome them sooner. Abstract,
participation, ASOR membership, and pre-registration forms
are all available on-line at
Call for Papers: 33rd International
Symposium on Archaeometry
22-26 April 2002, Amsterdam
The Archaeometry symposium will be held for the first
time in the Netherlands and the symposium certainly will be a
stimulus for the development of archaeological science in the
Netherlands. The local organizing committee is looking forward
to meeting a large number of colleagues in Amsterdam. The
symposium will be organized by the Vrije Universiteit (VU) at
Amsterdam and the Rijksdienst voor het Oudheidkundig
Bodemonderzoek (ROB, National Institute for Archaeological
Heritage Management) at Amersfoort.
The symposium will be held in Amsterdam in the Main
Building of the Vrije Universiteit. The VU is located in the
southwestern part of Amsterdam, close to Schiphol
International Airport and symposium hotels. There are good
railway/bus/tram and metro connections between VU, the old
town centre, the hotels and the airport.
The symposium has seven sessions (no parallel sessions).
Six of them are regular, while a seventh theme session is
selected by the local organizing committee. An afternoon break
with an excursion is planned in the middle of the symposium.
page 9
The titles of the regular sessions are as follows: Field
archaeology (geoarchaeology and prospection); Dating (organic
and inorganic materials); Biomaterials (bone, residues, etc.);
Technology and provenance I (stone, plaster and pigments);
Technology and provenance II (ceramics and glass);
Technology and provenance III (metals).
Theme Session
Especially in northwestern Europe the scientific study of
the in situ preservation of archaeological heritage has become
a major issue. Work in this field of conservation studies is
subsidized by national and international research bodies and it
can safely be assumed that the number of studies in the field
will increase and will be performed world-wide. The title of
the theme session is: Conservation studies (science and the in
situ preservation of archaeological heritage).
During the excursion participants will be informed with
the state of art of Maritime Archaeology in the Netherlands. It
includes a visit to the conservation laboratories of the Institute
for Maritime and Ship Archaeology and a visit to a replica of
the Dutch East Indiaman Batavia and it’s wharf.
Amsterdam, the capital of the Netherlands, is popular
throughout the world and is the most harmonious yet varied
city of the Netherlands. The 702,000 inhabitants, 550,000
bicycles and 6,800 historic buildings give the city an unique
style and character. It is famous for its canals (160 with 1,281
bridges, 2,394 houseboats), gabled houses, museums (22
Rembrandt and 206 Van Gogh paintings) and of course its
atmosphere. Amsterdam’s old town centre is very compact.
The museums, monuments, markets, shopping street and other
attractions are generally within walking distance of each other
and are all within a few minutes by public transport from the
symposium venue. Amsterdam also offers a wide variety of
theatres, music halls, etc. in which you can enjoy all kinds of
cultural activities.
Committee of Honour
The Symposium is supported by the institutional world of
Dutch archaeology which is represented in the Committee of
Honour by Mrs H. van der Linden (Director ROB), Prof. R.
Reinders (Chairman Dutch Research School for Archaeology,
ARCHON), Prof. N.G.A.M. Roymans (Head of Archaeology
Department, VU), Prof. W. Roeleveld (Dean of Faculty of
Earth Sciences, VU).
The main sponsors of the Symposium are the Vrije
Universiteit at Amsterdam (Faculty of Arts, the Archaeological
Institute and the Faculty of Earth Sciences) and the Rijksdienst
voor het Oudheidkundig Bodemonderzoek (Amersfoort). At
this moment the following institutes have agreed to support
Archaeometry 2002 by manpower and/or direct financial
funding: RAAP consultancy, Amsterdam (private company in
prospective archaeology) Dutch Centre for Dendrochronology
page 10
SAS Bulletin
(RING), Amersfoort: Faculty of Archaeology, University of
Leiden Archaeological Institute, University of Groningen.
apply see the next circular and future announcements on the
conference website and in the SAS Bulletin.
The official symposium language will be English.
Key Dates
Second Circular with Registration Forms and Call for
Papers: May/June 2001; Deadline for submitting Abstracts: 1
November 2001; Notification of acceptance or rejection:
January 2002; Deadline for early registration and hotel
reservation: 1 February 2002.
For further information: E.A.K. Kars, Rikjsdienst voor het,
Oudheidkundig, Bodemonderzoek, PO Box 1600, 3800 BP
Amersfoort, the Netherlands. Tel 31 33 422 76 06; fax 31 33
422 77 99; email: [email protected]; web: www.archaeometry.
The registration fees are (approximately) as follows: Early
fee 250 Euro; late fee 300 Euro; student early fee 125 Euro;
student late fee 150 Euro. These fees include coffee/tea and a
simple lunch. Prices for the Symposium banquet are 40 Euro
(30 Euro for students).
Grants for Overseas Participants and Students
Grants for overseas participants and for participants from
the former Soviet Union and some Balkan states are not
available yet. However, the organizers hope to be able to provide
limited financial aid to researches who can prove financial
hardship. With regard to archaeometry students the organizers
can, apart from the reduced fee, be helpful in finding the
cheapest way of accomodation.
The organising committee has arranged hotels in different
prices categories with travel agent Carlson Wagonlit Travel.
Most hotels are conveniently located in the central or southern
part of Amsterdam and are all of international standard. People
who want to reserve cheaper accommodation can book an
apartment or a student room in a University Guesthouse or
find their own accommodation. Further informations follows in
the Second Circular and will be available on the conference
Social Program
Social events being planned include a reception given by
the city council of Amsterdam, while the excursion will merge
into a buffet. The symposium banquet will be organized
somewhere in the old town centre of Amsterdam. There is no
specific partner programme; however sight-seeing tours for
partners and participants in and around Amsterdam during and
just after the conference will be arranged on demand.
Symposium Proceedings
Proceedings of the symposium will not be produced. An
exception probably will be made for the theme session on science
and the preservation of archaeological heritage.
Prizes for Best Student Posters
To encourage the active participation of students in the
Archaeometry Symposia, the Standing Committee offers two
Martin Aitken prizes of $100 US each for the best posters
representing the work of students enrolled in programs leading
to degrees in science or archaeological science. The Society
for Archaeological Sciences also offers two prizes for the best
student posters, which consist of annual membership in the
SAS including subscriptions to JAS and Archaeometry. Students
must attend the symposium to claim their prizes. If you wish to
Archaeological Ceramics
Charles C. Kolb, Associate Editor
The column in this issue of the SAS Bulletin
includes six topics: 1) summaries about new
books related to archaeological ceramics, 2) journals and articles
3) Oriental ceramic news 4) maritime archaeology: ceramics
from shipwrecks, 5) professional meetings held, 6) forthcoming
professional meetings, 7) museums and exhibitions, 8)
bibliographies, and 9) websites.
New Publications: Books
The prolific scholar of material culture, Henry H. Glassie,
College Professor of Folklore and Co-director of Turkish Studies
at Indiana University has recently prepared a volume for
publication entitled The Potter’s Art (Bloomington: Indiana
University Press, 1999; 152 pp., ISBN 0-253-33732-1, $25.00,
cloth; ISBN 0-253-21356-8, $12.95, paper). This book, designed
by the author and illustrated by his own photographs, has 60
black-and white images and16 color plates, and is accompanied
by Acknowledgments, Notes (90 endnotes), a 51-item
Bibliography, and a five-page Index. The Potter’s Art is the
first in a series of books on material culture co-published by
Material Culture of Philadelphia and the Indiana University
Press. The book is an expanded version of the fourth chapter
of Glassie’s Material Culture (Bloomington: Indiana University
Press, 1999, pp. 143-226) published in August 1999. The volume
is an ethnographic report that is also an essay on the nature of
art (especially ceramic art) and a demonstration of how art
may be studied cross culturally. In this book, Glassie brings to
the reader a group of modern ceramic artisans, modern masters
of traditional ceramic manufacture from the United States,
Sweden, Turkey, Bangladesh, and Japan. He seeks to inform
us about the potters’ techniques and tastes, their ideas about
beauty and significance, and cooperation in the midst of other
life activities, and thereby illustrate the personal and the social,
the useful and beautiful, and the material and spiritual aspects
of this art. Glassie is the author of three other volumes published
Winter 2000
SAS Bulletin
by Indiana University Press: Turkish Traditional Art Today
(1993, 962 pp., 1061 black-and white photos, 13 color plates, 6
maps, ISBN 0-253-32555-2, $89.95, cloth), Art and Life in
Bangladesh (1997, 520 pp. 445 black-and-white photos, 12
color plates, ISBN 0-253-33291-5, $49.95, cloth), and the
aforementioned Material Culture (1999, 416 pp., 170 blackand-white photos, 16 illustrations, ISBN 0-253-33574-4, $29.95,
There are nine sections in Glassie’s latest volume. The
first, “The Potter’s Art,” provides an introduction and
background to his assessment, and is followed by a chapter
entitled “Bangladesh” in which Glassie discuss a craft-caste,
the Pals, also profiled in greater detail in Chapter 6 of Art and
Life in Bangladesh. The craft production of kalshis
(earthenware water vessels) is contrasted with the fabrication
of murtis (painted clay images of deities which are “vessels
with sacred power.” “Sweden” profiles Lars Andersson of
Raus in Skane, Sweden. In the subsequent chapter, “Georgia,”
he considers the production of ash-glazed stoneware face jugs
at the Meaders Pottery at Mossy Creek and the Hewell Pottery
in Gillsville, Georgia. With “Acoma” Glassie reviews the harsh
environment of the American Southwest and notes that 300
potters in 13 pueblos make “storyteller” figures, partly
influenced by tourism. A major section is devoted to “Turkey”
and is a distillation of some elements in Glassie’s Turkish
Traditional Art Today, Chapters 14-17. A shift from the
utilitarian to the ornamental production is seen with small atelier
shops producing polychrome painted mosque tiles and plates.
The aesthetics of decoration is considered, with balance seen
as the key to design. In “Japan” Glassie considers the history
of Arita porcelain, in the main tableware (plates, bowls, and
cups), and informs us of 170 workshops in the Arita area. “Hagi”
is a style and area of western Honshu where 200 shops produce
yaki (statues) and tea vessels (tea bowls, tea canisters, and
containers for incense, fresh water, and flowers). Glassie’s
final essay is entitled “Work in the Clay,” in which he confides
that “I am not a potter, I am a folklorist, a student of ceramics
because pottery is a more universal democratic medium than
painting, a better place to search for the world’s excellence. I
have become an admirer of the sincere worker with clay. I
envy the options of the modern potter” (p. 119). He notes that
traditional art may flourish in a poor country (Bangladesh), a
prospering nation (Turkey), or a rich country (Japan). Indiana
University Press, is located at 601 North Morton Street,
Bloomington, Indiana 47404-3797 has a website at http:// Orders may be submitted via
telephone 800/842-6796 or by e-mail: [email protected]
Ronald Duncan (Anthropology, Oklahoma Baptist
University, Shawnee, OK) is a researcher and consultant on
gender issues, arts and crafts, and economic change in Latin
America. He is the author of The Ceramics of Raquira,
Columbia: Gender, Work, and Economic Change
(Gainesville: University Press of Florida, 304 pp., 40 b/w photos,
3 drawings, 3 maps, 11 tables, 1 appendix, glossary, bibliography,
index, 1998; ISBN 0-8130-1615-0, $49.95, cloth) and has
recently written a companion volume entitled Crafts,
Capitalism, and Women: The Potters of La Chamba,
Colombia (Gainesville: University Press of Florida, 280 pp.,
page 11
27 b/w photos, 2 drawings, 3 maps, 10 tables, glossary,
bibliography, index, 2000; ISBN 0-8130-1774-2, $59.95, cloth).
His 1998 volume focused on the technical and socioeconomic
aspects of ceramic manufacture in Raquira, Colombia where
two pottery-making styles coexist, and he documents how with
the advent of capitalism males attained gender power to bring
about significant, permanent transformations in a centuries-old
women’s ceramic tradition that emphasized Spanish customs
and the use of molds and potter’s wheels. The men control the
capital and become the marketers for the products produced
by their wives, hence, many women become assistants to their
husbands in this dynamic economic enterprise. This solid village
ethnography is a significant contribution to ceramic
ethnoarchaeology and he illustrates how individuals, families,
and communities respond to personal and economic change.
Duncan’s latest volume on the women potters of La
Chamba shows how grandmothers fabricate traditional cooking
vessels, mothers make utilitarian bowls for sale to urban families,
and daughters create one-of-a-kind art pieces on special order
for export to Europe and the United States. He argues that the
treatment of home-based women and children craft workers
that occurs in La Chamba (and other areas of Latin America)
is structurally similar to slavery and indentured servitude. In
spite of being a part of a “global economy” the women receive
minimal compensation for their labors. This is a compelling,
comprehensive description and analysis of the traditions,
socioeconomic parameters and ceramic styles found in a
contemporary pottery-making community located in an
understudied region of Latin America. The author’s impressive
documentation of the cultural and economic changes occurring
in La Chamba provides an especially valuable assessment
useful to students of anthropology, craft technology, economics,
history, gender studies art history, and cultural dynamics, as
well as ceramic studies. Duncan’s descriptions of indigenous
technologies and the use of beehive kilns (Chapter 10) are
especially valuable. His studies of pottery producing
communities in Colombia parallel those of Dean Arnold in Ticul,
Yucatan, Mexico and in Andean communities. Both scholars
document technological and socioeconomic changes that are
valuable to ceramic ethnoarchaeology. The University Press
of Florida (15 NW 15th Street, Gainesville, FL 32611-2079, 1800/226-3822) has a website with Shopping Cart capabilities
The Curassow’s Nest: Myths and Symbols in the
Ceramics of Ancient Panama by Mary W. Helms (Gainesville:
University Press of Florida, xii + 190 pp., 2000, ISBN 0-81301746-7, $55.00, cloth) focuses on the analysis of ceramics from
Sitio Conte in central Panama dating 500-1000 CE that were
excavated in 1930. Helms (Anthropology, University of North
Carolina at Greensboro) discerns designs and themes that have
parallels in Mexican and Maya art and iconography and
Amazonian belief systems. This volume is a companion to her
Creations of the Rainbow Serpent: Polychrome Ceramic
Designs from Ancient Panama (Albuquerque: University of
New Mexico Press, 1995, viii + 136 pp.) and relates to her
earlier Cuna Molas and Cocle Art Forms: Reflections on
Panamanian Design Styles and Symbols (Philadelphia:
Institute for the Study of Human Issues, 1981, vii + 79 pp.).
page 12
SAS Bulletin
William Nesse of the University of Northern Colorado has
recently published Introduction to Mineralogy (Oxford and
New York: Oxford University Press, 442 pp., ISBN 0-19510691-1, $70.00, cloth). This new volume covers the traditional
components: Part 1: crystallography, crystal chemistry, crystal
structures, and crystal growth; Part 2: mineral identification
(with chapters on physical properties, optical properties, X-ray
diffraction, and chemical properties; and Part 3: systematic
mineralogy (silicates ff.). The illustrations are especially well
done and there are useful extensive discussions of petrogenesis
accompanying the introductions to mineral groups as well as
the descriptions of individual minerals. Oxford University Press
may be contacted at
University Museum Publications at the University of
Pennsylvania in Philadelphia has announced the publication of
a three volumes and one videotape oriented to ceramics.
Lerna IV: The Architecture, Stratigraphy, and Pottery
of Lerna III (two volumes) by Martha Heath Wiencke (332
pp., 108 figures, 39 plans, 19 sections; 494 pp., 103 figures, 24
plates, 3 appendices, 27 tables; ISBN 0987661-304-0, 2000,
$125.00, cloth) emphasizes Lerna II or Early Helladic II
materials from Lerna in the Greek Argolid. The second volume
contains a complete chronologically arranged catalog organized
by shape and fabric. A petrographic analysis of selected sherds
is also reported.
Corinth VII, v: Corinthian
Conventionalizing Pottery by Martha K. Risser (200 pp., 64
pls., 30 figures, ISBN 0-87661-075-0, June 2000, $60.00, cloth)
documents workshops producing this fine ware (vases with
black and red bands, patterns, and floral motifs) during the
sixth through fourth centuries BCE. Contexts, chronologies,
painters and workshops, and evidence for systematic export
are documented. A publication entitled A LM IA Ceramic Kiln
in South-Central Crete: Function and Pottery Production
has been co-authored by Joseph W. Shaw, Aleydis Van de
Moortil, Peter M. Day, and Vassilis Kilikoglou (200 pp., 74
figures, 16 tables, 2000, ISBN 0-87661-530-2, $40.00, paper,
Hesperia Supplement 30) and presents a detailed analysis of
the excavation of a Late Minoan IA cross-draft kiln in Kommos,
Crete. This type of kiln was used during the Neopalatial period.
The authors document vessel shapes, decorations, and
technological characteristics, and present information about the
range of firing temperatures, the compositional similarities and
differences in the clays being used, and aspects of the firing
process. Lastly, a 27-minute VHS video produced by
Cinegraphic Films in 1999, narrated by Philip Betancourt
(Archaeology, Temple University) entitled “The Potters of
Thrapsano: A Modern Workshop with Clues to Ancient
Technology” (UM/VHS/04, $24.95) has been produced.
Traditional pottery manufacturing at Thrapsano, Crete included
hand- and wheel-made techniques to build up vases in sections.
University Museum Publications may be reached at 33rd and
Spruce Streets, Philadelphia, PA 19104-6324 (1-800/306-1941,
[email protected] )
Ras Shamra-Ougarit XIII: Ceramiques myceniennes
d’Ougarit (Paris and Nicosia: Leventis Foundation, 222 pp.,
32 figures, 9 plates, 2000, ISBN 2-86538-267-2, $46.00, paper)
written by Marguerite Yon, Vassos Karageorghis, and Nicholle
Hirschfeld with the collaboration of Annie Caubet, is a joint
publication of the Association pour la diffusion de la pensee
francaise (Ed. Le Ministere Francaise des Affaires Etrangeres)
in Paris and the Leventis Foundation, Nicosia, Cyprus. The
text of the volume is in English and French. The authors report
500 new Mycenaean ceramic objects brought to the Louvre
that have not been reported previously from excavations in the
fourteenth to twelfth century BCE Bronze Age site of Ras
Shamra-Ugarit located on the coast of Syria. Karageorghis
considers those objects decorated in the Pictorial Style, Yon
(site director from 1978-1998) examines the contexts of these
objects, and Hirschfield prepared the ceramic catalog and wrote
a chapter on potmarks. Further information may be obtained
from the Leventis Foundation by e-mail: [email protected]
Available online is ‘Ain Ghazal Excavation Reports,
Volume 1: Symbols at ‘Ain Ghazal, published under the
direction of Gary O. Rollefson and Zeidan Kafafi (Denise
Schamandt-Besserat, editor). This Neolithic site located near
Amman, Jordan was first settled ca. 7250 BCE during PrePottery Neolithic B (PPNB) and was a village with a mixed
farming economy until ca. 6500 BCE when there was a shift
to nomadic pastoralism (characterizing PPNC). “Chapter 1:
Tokens Finds at Pre-Pottery Neolithic ‘Ain Ghazal, Jordan: A
Formal and Technological Analysis” by Harry Iceland
documents 137 clay and stone tokens (106 clay and 31 lithic,
etc.) in the form of cones (n = 22), spheres (n = 93), discs (n =
14), and other (n = 8). Iceland discusses the results of his study
of 21 petrographic thin sections (five are illustrated) and 8 XRD
analyses, deducing clay characteristics and firing temperatures.
“Chapter 2: Animal Figurines” by Schmand-Bessarat and
“Chapter 3: Human Figurines” written by Ellen McAdam, are
not yet online.
Asian Traditions in Clay: The Hauge Gifts (152 pp.,
$29.95) is a new volume by Louise Cort, Massumeh Farhad,
and Ann Gunter to be published in late October 2000. The
book features examples of ceramics from ancient Iran (33
specimens), stonework from medieval Cambodia (35 pieces),
and the earthenware from Islamic Near East (16 examples)
that have been donated to the Sackler Gallery by the Hauge
family. The Sackler Gallery, a part of the Smithsonian Institution
Museums in Washington, DC, has scheduled exhibition for some
of these objects scheduled from 29 October 2000 through 22
April 2001.
Alexandra Dimitritrova-Milceva authored Terra Sigillata
und duemmewandige keramik aus Moesia inferior
(Nordbulgarien) (120 pp., 30 plates, 6 illustrations, 8 tables,
ISBN 954-90487-3-4, $21.00 including postage [surface rate])
which became available in June 2000. This study is the first on
Roman imported ceramics recovered in the province of Moesia
inferior. For further information, please contact Lyudmil
Vahalinski at [email protected],techno-link.cpm
For scholars who read Chinese, Zhongguo Taoci Quanji
(Compendium of Chinese Ceramics) in 15 volumes (Shanghai:
Zhongguo Meishu Denli, Quanji, 2000 ff.) is being prepared,
five volumes of which have been published. These include, in
English translation: Compendium of Chinese Ceramics 1: The
Neolithic Period (331pp., 253 color plates, 253b/w illustrations,
2000); 2: Xia, Shang, Zhou, Spring and Autumn, and the
Winter 2000
SAS Bulletin
Warring States Period (304 pp., 244 color plates, 244 b/w
illustrations, 2000); 4: Three Kingdoms, the Western and
Eastern Jin, and Northern and Southern Dynasties (313
pp., 249 color plates, 249 b/w illustrations, 2000); 5: The Sui
and Tang Dynasties (291 pp., 229 color plates, 229 b/w
illustrations, 2000); and 6: The Tang Dynasty and Five
Dynasties (277 pp., 223 color plates, 223 b/w illustrations, 2000).
The ten volumes yet to be published are: 3: Qin and Han, 7:
Song (Part I), 8: Song (Part II), 9: Liao, Xixia and Jin, 10:
Yuan (Part I), 11: Yuan (Part II), 12: Ming (Part I), 13:
Ming (Part II), 14: Qing (Part I), and 15 Qing (Part II).
The price, by subscription, is about $1,100 per set. Major
Oriental book dealers can provide information, including
Hanshan Tang Books (3 Ashburton Center, 276 Cortis Road,
London SW15 3AY, UK,
hsttopbar.html ) or Paragon Book Gallery (1507 South Michigan
Avenue, Chicago, IL 60605, 800/55.BOOKS, http:// )
Roxanna M. Brown’s The Ceramics of South-East Asia:
Their Dating and Identification, 2nd ed. (272 pp., 207 color
and 274 b/w illustrations, 69 figures, and 6 maps, ISSN 1878529-70-6, 2000) previously published by Oxford University
Press has recently been reprinted with the author’s permission
by Art Media Resources (107 South Michigan Avenue,
Chicago, IL 60605, 312/663-5351, [email protected]
.com). The publisher has a website at http://www. This important volume, a revised and
expanded version of the author’s Masters’ thesis entitled The
Dating and Identification of Southeast Asian Ceramics
(University of Singapore, 1973, directed by William Willetts,
last curator of the former Art Museum of the University of
Singapore) remains a quarter of a century later the standard
reference. When the first edition of the book was published in
1977, it was anticipated that her research would serve to
stimulate an interest in documenting Southeast Asian ceramics
— and it has served this purpose. The second edition published
in 1987 was virtually a new book, with much new and emended
narrative and the addition of color plates and monochrome
illustrations. It has been out-of-print for a number of years
and, therefore, scholars will be pleased to have this reprinted
volume available once again. The reprint edition has
maintained the color fidelity of the original plates and color
illustrations. Following the Introduction, there are six chapters
“Vietnamese Ceramics,” “The Go-Sanh Kilns,” “Khmer
Wares,” “The Sukhothai and Sawakkhalonk Kilns,” The
Northern and Other Thai Kilns,” and “Burmese Ceramics.”
An extensive bibliography and index accompany the volume.
Roxanna Brown has lived in Thailand for many years and is a
graduate of Columbia University and the University of
Singapore, was a special lecturer in South-East Asian art and
culture in the Fine Arts Department at Chiangmai University
(Thailand), and is presently in the Department of Art History
at UCLA.
Rebecca Saunders (Curator of Anthropology, Museum of
Natural Science, Louisiana State University), is the author of
Stability and Change in Guale Indian Pottery, 1300-1702
(University of Alabama Press, 2000, 288 pp., ISBN 0-81731012-6, $29.95 paper). In this comprehensive assessment of
page 13
changing ceramic attributes beginning with Irene phase pottery,
Saunders documents the interaction between Spanish and
Native American culture in the Southeastern United States in
the 16th century through the end of the Mission period. In this
study she used ceramics from coastal sites in Florida and
Georgia and employs stylistic and technological analyses in her
analysis, and concludes that despite high mortality rates and
relocation, the Guale maintained a remarkably stable pottery
production with traditional craft elements altered minimally.
Pottery and Chronology at Angel (University of
Alabama Press, 2000, 264 pp., ISBN 0-8173-1035-5, $29.95
paper) is a volume authored by Sherri L. Hilgeman
(Anthropology, Indiana Southeast University) that attempts to
resolve the internal chronological phasing at the Angel site
located near Evansville, Indiana that dates 1200 to 1450 CE.
The site was excavated from 1939 to 1989 and produced more
than two million artifacts. In this first intensive assessment of
Angel pottery, Hilgeman employs attribute analysis and
radiocarbon data to divide the Angel assemblage into
chronological stages and correlates these with archaeological
phases found at other archaeological sites. The analysis is
significant for archaeology in the Ohio Valley and the study of
Mississippian culture. The University of Alabama Press has a
website at (where 20 percent
discounts are offered for Internet orders) or can be reached at
205/348-5180. Orders are handled by the Chicago Distribution
Center, University of Alabama Press, 11030 South Langley
Street, Chicago, IL 60628, 773/568-1550.
The Society for Historical Archaeology has announced the
availability of two new publications that contain some useful
information on historic ceramic materials. Approaches to
Material Culture Research for Archaeologists, 2nd edition,
compiled by Davis R. Brauner (440 pp., ISBN 1-886818-05-3,
$25.00 paper) is a reader designed for classroom use. The
contents focus on four major topics: Ceramics (6 articles), Glass
(7 articles), and Metal, Stone, and Leather (8 articles), and
Assemblage and Meaning (4 articles). Included in the first group
are “A Vessel Typology for Early Chesapeake Ceramics: The
Potomac Typological System” (Beaudry, Long, Miller, Neiman,
and Stone); “Changes in Pearlware Dinnerware, 1780-1830”
(Sussman); “British Military Tableware” (Sussman); “Response
to Market: Dating English Underglaze Transfer-Printed Wares”
(Samford); “A Revised Set of CC Index Values for
Classification and Economic Scaling of English Ceramics from
1787 to 1880” (Miller); and “Status an Ceramics for Planters
and Slaves on Three Georgia Coastal Plantations” (Adams
and Boling). This second edition has about 60 percent new
material and replaces the 1991 first edition.
A second work is entitled Studies in Material Culture
Research, edited by Karlis Karklins (258 pp., 250 illustrations,
ISBN 1-886818-06-01, $35.00 paper), is a handbook for
researchers who deal with materials recovered from historical
sites. Individual chapters are devoted to metals identification,
metal files and their reuses, composite table cutlery (1700-1930),
historic door hardware, a bibliography of electrical artifacts, a
guide to dating glass tableware (1800-1940), and 18th century
French blue-green bottles from the fortress of Louisbourg, Nova
Scotia. Of special interest are two contributions: “Objects
page 14
SAS Bulletin
versus Sherds: A Statistical Evaluation” by Lynne Sussman
(pp. 96-103), and “Smoking Pipes for the Archaeologist” by
Charles S. Bradley (pp. 104-133). The Society for Historical
Archaeology (P.O. Box 30446, Tucson, AZ 85751) accepts
credit cards (V, M, AE) and adds shipping charges of $2.50
for the first book and $0.50 for a second. Ordering information
is also available at the SHA website
You’ve heard of Boston’s “Big Dig” — well this is Sue
Scott’s “big fig” monograph. The Corpus of Terracotta
Figurines from the Excavations of Sigvald Linne at
Teotihuacan, Mexico (1932 & 1935) and Comparative
Material. Sue Scott. Stockholm: No. 17, 2000
New Publications: Journals and Articles
Archaeologia Bulgarica is a journal (thrice per annum,
ca. 100 pages per issue, $59.00 per year) that accepts
contributions in English, German, and French, and emphasizes
Southeastern Europe. The initial issue was published in 1997.
Conflated annual Tables of Contents for the first three years,
and subscription and other information are available on the
website The
articles include “A Pontic Pottery Group of the Hellenistic Age
(A Survey Based on Examples from the Bulgarian Black Sea
Coast)” by A. Bozkova (1:2, 1997), “Spaerantike Glasierte
Kermaik aus Bulgarien” by G. Kuzmanov (2:1, 1998), and
“Medieval Ceramics with a Micaceous Coating from Plovdiv
(11th-12th c AD)” by M. Manolova (3:2, 1999).
JungsteinSITE: Journal of the Neolithic Period in
Central Europe is a new online journal, primarily in German
(but with English summaries) that began in November 1999.
Of particular interest is an article by Thomas Saile (7 February
2000) entitled “Bohemica aus der Sammlung des Gottinger
Seminars fur Ur- und Fruhgeschichte - zu einer
altestbandkeramischen Siedlung en Nordbohmen” (“Finds from
Bohemia in the Collection of the Seminar fur Ur- und
Fruhgeschichte, University of Gottingen - a Settlement of the
Earliest Linear Pottery in North Bohemia”). The site’s Table
of Contents and information about e-mail newsletter
subscriptions are found at:
The initial contribution in the new publication, the Journal
of Caribbean Archaeology, “Reconstructing Household
Vessel Assemblages and Site Duration at an Early Ostionoid
Site from South-Central Puerto Rico,” authored by Chrisopher
T. Espenshade (Skelly and Loy, Inc.), is available at the URL In this article 48 ceramic vessels
from an Early Ostionoid site (ca. 650 CE), from site PO-21, a
hamlet (110 x 65 m) located on the Cerrillos River near Ponce,
Puerto Rico, were subjected to technological and formal
analyses. Nine vessel classes were developed and Espenshade
suggests that PO-21 was the location of from one to three
contemporaneous structures, each occupied for less than 20
Judit Molera (University of Barcelona) has placed her fivepage article “Mineralogical Evolution and Interaction of the
Ca-Rich Pastes with Pb Glazes: Archaeometric Implications
— Manufacture Techniques of Islamic and Mudejar Ceramics”
on the Internet at
Oriental Ceramic News
The latest ACRO Update September 2000 (2/3), the
quarterly newsletter of the Asian Ceramic Research
Organization edited by Chuimei Ho (Field Museum of Natural
History), contains a number of articles relating to a Chinese
13th century Guan Ware ceramic kiln, 17th-18th century glass
and ceramics, and a Chinese Potters Newsletter; Japanese
ceramics; 14th century Southeast Asian wares from Malaysia
and a 15 th century Brunei shipwreck; 10 th-12 th century
Indonesian pottery from Sumatra and a 19th century South China
Sea shipwreck; a 15th century Vietnamese shipwreck near Hue;
letters to the editor; Ceramics on the Internet (the Hoi An
cargo auction); and a tabulation of forthcoming Conferences
and Exhibitions. There are an unusual number of shipwreck
finds reported; most of which are being “excavated” by salvors.
Readers wishing to subscribe to ACRO Update can write to
ACRO, P.O. Box 14419, Chicago, Illinois 60614-0419.
Subscription rates for one, three, or five years are $25.00,
$42.00, and $95.00, respectively ($3.00 per year additional for
overseas subscriptions); checks drawn on U.S. banks should
be made out to ACRO.
Maritime Archaeology: Ceramics from Shipwrecks
Since 1994 the Institute of Nautical Archaeology at Texas
A&M University, supported by the Supreme Council for
Antiquities for Egypt, have been investigating a Ming-era
shipwreck located near Sadana Island in the Red Sea. The
shipwreck originally thought to date to 1640-1670 actually dates
to 1755-1764 CE and contained ten chests of tea each of which
held 900 to 1000 export porcelain tea cups. The cargo was
destined for Middle Eastern markets and is chronologically
mixed, containing Quing Dynasty Chinese ceramics and
Chinese imitations of Japanese decorated wares. There is an
excellent discussion in ACRO Update 2000 (2-3):2-3
(September) and reference to articles by Cheryl Haldane Ward
(Florida State University) at
A 19th century junk wrecked in January 1822 in the South
China Sea is documented in The Legacy of the Tek Sing by
Nigel Pickford (Stuttgart, Germany: Nagel, 176 pp. 100 color
images, ISBN 1-837-57-069-3, 75.00 DM). The volume also
contains a section on ceramics by David Freedman. Salvage
diver Mike Hatcher excavated the Tek Sing (True Star)
beginning in May 1999. The cargo contained more than 350,000
pieces of Chinese porcelain and is regarded as the largest
ceramic recovery in the history of salvage. Information about
the loss of this large ship (50 meters long, 10 meters at the
beam, and weighing about 1,000 tons) and its 1,600 passengers
(of whom only 200 were rescued) and cargo (ceramics, coins,
cannon, mercury, and other merchandise), is summarized at
the website The
ceramics are to be auctioned by Nagel Auctions in Stuttgart,
Germany. The web site also provides excellent images of
examples of the porcelain, the salvage operation, and auction
catalog and book purchase information.
Turiang: A Fourteenth-Century Shipwreck in Southeast
Asian Waters written by ceramic specialist Roxanna Brown
and marine salvage operator Sten Sjostrand has recently been
Winter 2000
SAS Bulletin
published (Pasadena, CA: Pacific Asia Museum, 2000, 80 pp.,
ISBN 1-877921-17-3, $24.95, paper). This collaborative
publication documents about 1,200 ceramic pieces from
Thailand, Vietnam, and China that represent about 70 percent
of the cargo of a wreck lost 1305-1370 CE. Nearly 50% of the
specimens came from the Sukhothai kiln center in north central
Thailand. The museum is located at 46 North Robles Avenue,
Pasadena, CA and the volume may be ordered from the
Museum Shop (telephone at 626/449-2742, extension 20), or
via the museum’s website at The
Pacific Asia Museum also has available Virginia Dofflemyer’s
Southeast Asian Ceramics from the Collection of Margot
and Hans Ries (ISBN 1-87792-1270), 88 pp., 120 illustrations,
26 color illustrations, $28.00, paper) which describes this
collection at Pacific Asia Museum.
A late 15th to early 16th-century Vietnamese cargo vessel
that was lost near Chu Lao Cham Island, Vietnam, in the area
of Hoi An town, an ancient trading port in Quang Nam Province,
central Vietnam was excavated by Saga Horizon Sdn. Bhd, a
Malaysian private company, and the Vietnam Salvage
Corporation (VISAL), with the permission of the Vietnamese
Government during a four-month period in 1999. The site
yielded more than 150,000 ceramic vessels including
Vietnamese blue and white objects; ten percent of the ceramics
will remain in Vietnam. The remainder of the cargo, considered
to be the property of Saga Horizon and the state-owned Vietnam
Salvage Corporation, has and will be auctioned (11-13 October
2000 and 4 December 2000) by Butterfield’s auction house
(an eBay Company) in San Francisco, and on eBay Great
Collections for ten weeks beginning on 14 October 2000.
Treasures from the Hoi An Hoard is a two-volume catalog
authored by the excavation director Mensun Bound (Triton
Fellow of Marine Archaeology, St. Peter’s College, University
of Oxford) and by Pham Quoc Quan (Director, National
Museum of Vietnam History) Dessa Goddard (Director,
Butterfield’s Asian Art Department), and John Guy (Curator,
Victoria and Albert Museum, London) and published in San
Francisco by Butterfield’s. The authors document the Hoi An
shipwreck and the recovery of its ceramics, while John Guy
provides a nine-page scholarly assessment of the Vietnamese
wares. His working chronology for the wreck is 1430 to 1480.
This two-volume fully-illustrated catalog of the ceramics was
to be issued in hard copy at $65.00, but is available online in a
searchable database at the website http://www/
Mensum Bound is authoring two scholarly publications that
will be available early in 2001. A Typology of the Pottery
from the Hoi An Cargo will be a comprehensive two-volume
illustrated catalog of the cargo, ship fittings, and personal
possessions of those on board. The set will have 750 pages
and 8,000 color illustrations, drawings, and tables. The following
ceramic categories will be considered: shipware, dishes, bowls,
cups, pouring vessels, bottles, gourds, burners, jars, jarlets, boxes,
lime pots, and statuettes (figurines). The Hoi An Wreck: A
Deepwater Cargo of 15th Century Painted Pottery from the
South China Sea off Central Vietnam will be a popular volume
and will cover blue and white ceramics, the discovery and
excavation of the wreck, the characteristics of the ship, finds
from persons who were aboard, the cargo, and chronology.
page 15
Because these volumes are not yet completed, information about
them including prices and publication dates, may be obtained
by writing to Oxford MARE (Maritime Archaeological
Research and Excavation), 3 Church Road, Horspath, Oxford,
OX33 1RU, UK or by sending an e-mail request for information
to [email protected]
A website provided by Sten Sjostrand on behalf of Nanhai
Marine Archaeology Sdn. Bhd. is titled “Ming-pottery Found
on a Number of Shipwrecks in the South China Sea” has a
URL of Although the site emphasizes
salvage operations and artifacts for collectors and for
investment, there is some information on five ships from the
Late Yunan and Early Ming period that were sunk in the South
china Sea. The names given to the wrecks are project names
only since Asian vessels of this era were not named. The midfifteenth century Royal Nanhai wreck located near Kuantan,
West Malaysia excavated over a four-year period has a cargo
of 20,973 pieces of pottery a majority of which was celadon
that came from the Sawamkhalok kilns. Four other vessels
have not been studied or excavated. The Longquan wreck is a
large Chinese vessel probably dating the late fourteenth century
that carried more than 100,000 early Ming period ceramics.
Located in 63 meters of water, there are serious diving
Professional Meetings Held
The Mycenaean Pictorial Pottery Round-Table Conference
was held at the Swedish Institute in Athens, Greece from 4-6
December 1999; 13 oral papers and 3 posters were presented.
The papers included: “Mycenaean Pictorial Pottery from Midea
in the Argolid” by K. Demakopoilou, “The Functional Contexts
of Mycenaean Pictorial Pottery at Mycenae” by Lisa French,
“Mycenaean Pictorial Style at Kynos” by F. Dakoronia, “Late
Mycenaean Pictorial Pottery (LH IIIC)” by J. Crouwel,
“Evidence for Mycenaean Pictorial Pottery from the Central
Mediterranean” by L. Vagnetti, “Production Places of Some
Mycenaean Pictorial Vessels — The Contribution of Chemical
Pottery Analysis” by H. Mommsen, “Vases Marked for Trade:
The Special Case of Pictorial Pottery” by N. Hitschfeld, “Design
Analysis of Mycenaean Chariot Kraters” by C. Morris, “Tracing
Stylistic Evolution in Mycenaean Pictorial Vase-painting” by
E. Rysteldt, “Mycenaean Vase-painters of LH IIIC” by W.
Gunther, “The Rise of the Pictorial Style and the Art of Amarna”
by S. Hiller, “Women in Mycenaean Pictorial Vase Painting”
by L. Steel, and “The Study of the Mycenaean Pictorial Style
in Vase Painting: Achievements and Perspective” by V.
Karageorghis. Poster papers were given by Kim Shelton on
material from Mycenae, by Alison South on specimens from
Kalanason-Ayisos Dhimitrios, and by Paul Astrom on materials
from Hala Sultan Tekke and Midea.
The Chronology of Base-ring Ware and Bichrome Handmade and Wheel-made Ware was held in Stockholm, Sweden,
18-19 May 2000. The first day was devoted, in the main, to
Ring-base Ware. The papers presented that day included “Early
Base Ring Ware from Phaneromeni and Maroni” by Ellen
Herscher; “The Cypriot Base-ring I Jug from a Secondary
Burial in Saqqara Mastaba 3507” by Robert Merrillees, “On
the Appearance of Bichrome and Base Ring Ware in Several
page 16
SAS Bulletin
Excavation Areas at Ezbet Helmi, Egypt” by Irmgard Hein,
“The Base Ring Pottery from Tell el Ajul” by Cecia Bergoffen,
“Cypriot Ceramics in Egypt during the Rein of Thutmosis III…”
by Kathryn Eriksson, and “From Sherds on the Seabed at
Maroni-Tsaroukkas to the Chronology of Late Cypriot I.” by
Stuart Manning. The second day focused on Bichrome Handmade and Wheel-made Ware and seven papers were presented:
“Bichrome Hand-made Ware and Bichrome Wheel-made Ware
from Cyprus” by Paul Astrom, “The Study of Cypriot Bronze
Age Bichrome Ware: Past, Present, and Future” by Michal
Artzy, “Bichrome Wheel-made Ware at Nitovikla” by Gunnel
Huylt, “Bichrome Wheelmade Ware: still a Problem?” by
Vassos Karageorghis, “The Technology of Bichrome Wheelmade Ware” by Eleni Aloupi, “Bichrome Ware, BichromeDecorated Wares, and Basepring Wares from Tell el-cAjjul
and Tell Abu al-Kharaz: Synchronism and Problems” by Peter
M. Fischer, and “Bichrome Ware in Tell el-Dab’a: A
Chronological Perspective” by Manfred Bietak. Information
about Cypriot, Palestinian, and Egyptian sources was shared.
The program, abstracts (as available) and a brief summary by
Paul Astrom are posted on the “Conferences and Lectures”
page of the Cyprus American Archaeological Research
Institute’s website at
The venue of the Pecos 2000 Conference, held at Mesa
Verde National Park, 17-20 August 2000, was modified because
of forest fires in the region. Nonetheless, the conference was
held and more than 70 papers were presented of which four
were related to ceramics: “The Blanding Redware Project:
First Season” by William A. Lucius (Independent Scholar);
“Seeking the Red Ware Potters of the Northern San Juan:
Petrographic Analysis of Bluff Black-on-Red” by Ted Oppelt
(Mesa Verde National Park); “Ceramics from the Tommy Site,
Middle San Juan River Valley, New Mexico” by Lori S. Reed,
Joel Goff, and Andrea Carpenter (Animas Ceramic
Consulting); and “Redwares at 5MT1604: Cataloging
America’s Treasures from Mockingbird Mesa, CO” by Janet
Weeth. Further information and abstracts are available online
The Archaeological Ceramic Building Material Group
(ACBMG) met at the University of York, England on 30
September 2000. Four papers were presented: “‘Pre-Conquest’
Floor Tiles” by Laurence Keen (John Stark and Partners), “The
Use of Ceramic Petrology to Study Medieval Floor Tiles” by
Alan Vince (Archaeological Consultant), :”A New Approach
to Dating Bricks from Standing Medieval Buildings in England
and Wales” by Nic Holland (University of Durham), and
“Tarbock Tilery Merseyside and the 20th Legion” by Vivien
Swan (Swan Pottery). Further information is found on the
society’s home page at
acbmg/prog2000.html Phil Mills has posted his brick and tile
recording guidelines (six pages) at http://www.tegula.
The Fall meeting of the Archaeological Society of
Connecticut was held at Norwalk Community Technical
College, Norwalk, CT on 14 October 2000. Two of the 11
papers were concerned with pottery: “Prehistoric Pottery and
the Real World: Do Connecticut Ceramics Reflect Cultural
Reality?” by Lucianne Lavin (American Culture Specialists),
and “Colono-Indian or Colono-African Ware? Evidence from
Sylvester Manor, Shelter Island, New York” by Katherine Lee
Priddy (University of Massachusetts at Boston).
The annual meeting of the Archeological Society of Virginia
held in Franklin, VA on 21 October 2000 included 31 papers.
Only one related to ceramics: “Opening an Early 17th Century
Time Capsule: How Native American Ceramics from
Jamestown Island Can Help Identify Powhatan Contact Period
Sites” presented by Randy Turner (Virginia Department of
Historic Resources).
Recently announced on the clayminerals-l listserve is a
conference, “Advances on Micas: Problems, Methods,
Applications in Geodynamics,” scheduled for Rome, 2-4
November 2000. Accademia Nazionale dei Lincei, the Italian
National Academy, is convening this meeting in the field of
Earth Material Science to review key aspects of the present
state of the art for work on this very important group of rockforming minerals. The meeting is organized in the form of a
series of invited plenary lectures, plus a limited number of
contributed oral presentations. Extended abstracts for
contributed works will be made available by 1 September 2000.
Invited speakers include: C. Cipriani, “Micas: the Evolution of
Knowledge”; G. Ferraris, “Structural Aspects of Micas”; M.
Nespolo, “Crystallographic Basis of Polytypism and Twinning
in Micas:; M.F. Brigatti, “Crystal Chemistry of the Micas,” A;
S.J. Guggenheim, “Crystal Chemistry of the Micas,” B); P.F.
Zanazzi, “Behaviour of Micas at High Pressure and High
Temperature Conditions,” A); A. Pavese, “Behaviour of Micas
at High Pressure and High Temperature Conditions,” B; T.
Kogure, “Investigations of Mica Using Advanced Transmission
Electron Microscopy”; B. Grobéty, “Microstructure in Micas
and their Petrologic Significance”; A. Beran, “Infrared
Spectroscopy of Micas”; A. Mottana, “X-ray Absorption
Spectroscopy of the Micas”; M.D. Dyar, “Spectroscopy of
Iron in Micas: New Results from Mössbauer Effect, Optical,
and XANES Pre-edge”; J. Roux, “Thermodynamic Properties
of the Mica Solid Solutions”; C.V. Guidotti, “Metamorphic KNa Natural Micas: Selection of Samples for Study in Order to
Maximize the Efficiency of Future Research,” A; F.P. Sassi,
“Metamorphic K-Na Natural Micas: Selection of Samples for
Study in Order to Maximize the Efficiency of Future Research”;
and P. Árkai, “Phyllosilicates in Very Low-grade Metamorphism,
and their Evolution to Micas.” Additional information and
registration forms are available at in
micas2000/ For further details contact Daniela Volpato,
Secretarial Assistant, at Accademia Nazionale dei Lincei, Via
della Lungara 10, I-00165 Roma RM (telephone +39-066868223, FAX +39-06-6893616, e-mail address:
[email protected] ).
The Fourteenth Annual Ceramic Ecology Symposium was
held at the annual meeting of the American Anthropological
Association in San Francisco Hilton on Friday, 17 November
2000. This symposium, co-organized by Charles C. Kolb
(National Endowment for the Humanities) and Louana M.
Lackey (Maryland Institute, College of Art) was chaired by
Kolb. A list of participants and the titles of their papers was
included in the SAS Bulletin 23(1):14 (Spring 2000) but a
contribution by Sandra L. Lopez Varela (Universidad Autonoma
Winter 2000
SAS Bulletin
del Estado de Morelos, Mexico) entitled “Material Evidence
of Ceramic Production in the Ethnographic Record of a Pottery
Community in Cuentepec, Morelos” was added to the program.
Sandra’s paper was the first of ten papers and she reported an
ethnoarchaeological study of a pottery-making community at
Cuentepec and evaluated the use of ethnographic data to
identify ceramic production activities in the archaeological
record. Other presentations were given by James Sheehy, Elin
Danien, Judy Voelker, Christophe Descantes, Robert Harding
and Colin Shell (the latter an added co-author), Michael
Sugarman, Effie Athanassopoulos and Ian Whitbred, Kostalana
Michelaki, Linda Ellis, and Louana Lackey. Miriam T. Stark
(University of Hawai’i) was the discussant. This year’s
symposium included participants from Canada, Mexico, the
United Kingdom, Greece, and the United States. During the
past several years, other colleagues from Israel, the United
Kingdom, Spain, Germany, Mexico, and Canada have also
participated. If you would like to participate in the Fifteenth
Annual Ceramic Ecology Symposium to be held at the AAA
meeting in Washington, DC, scheduled 14-18 November 2001,
contact Charlie Kolb at [email protected] Future symposia are
being organized and will be held at the American
Anthropological Association annual meetings in New Orleans
(20-24 November 2002), Chicago (19-23 November 2003), and
San Francisco (17-21 November 2004).
The annual meeting of the Society for Historical
Archaeology was held 10-13 January 2001 in Long Beach,
CA. Larry Buhr, a doctoral student in the Department of
Anthropology at University of Nevada, Reno (Ansari Business
Building, Reno, NV 89557-0006), organized a symposium
entitled “Bricks and Brickmaking in Archaeological Contexts.”
Additional information may be obtained by telephone or e-mail:
775/784-1781 and [email protected]
The Australasian Archaeometry Conference, which meets
every four years, was scheduled to be held 5-9 February 2001
at The Conference Centre, 22 Symond Street, University of
Auckland, Auckland, New Zealand. The theme for the
symposium is “Issues and Developments in Australasian
Chronology: New Directions for the New Millennium.” Seven
sessions were scheduled, two of which relate to archaeological
ceramics. These are Sourcing/Characterization, convened by
Marshal Weisler (Anthropology, University of Auckland) and
Residue/Usewear, convened by Peter Sheppard (Anthropology,
University of Auckland). The conference proceedings will be
published as an edited monograph in the Research in
Anthropology and Linguistics series. Information regarding
the sessions may be found on the conference website at http:/
Upcoming Conferences
Organized as a symposium for the annual meeting of the
Society for American Archaeology in New Orleans, 18-22 April
2001, is a session entitled “Mesoamerican Figurines III: Beyond
the Boundaries.” Co-organized by Charles C. Kolb (National
Endowment for the Humanities) and Cynthia L. Otis Charlton
(Independent Researcher, Wellman, IA), and chaired by the
former, the contributions will consider current directions in
figurine studies using investigations from several periods and
page 17
areas of Mesoamerica with extensions into the southwestern
United States and northern South America. The introduction
to the third biennial symposium will summarize the results of
Mesoamerican Figurines I and II held at the Society for
American Archaeology annual meetings in New Orleans (1996)
and Chicago (1999). In these sessions, clay figurine assemblages
from the Mesoamerican Formative, Classic, and Preclassic
were assessed in terms of the history of research, contemporary
ethnoarchaeological and ethnohistoric analyses, and the current
status of interpretive research. The papers in Figurines III
continue these studies, reflect new analytical concepts such as
gender and ritual contexts. These papers include “Valdivia
Figurines and the Interpretive Challenges of Gender” by
Richard G. Lesure (University of California at Los Angeles);
“Gulf Olmec Figurines from La Joya, Veracruz, Mexico” coauthored by Billie Follensbee (Southwest Missouri State
University) and Philip J. Arnold III (Loyola University of
Chicago); “Figurines from the Formative Village of Tetimpa,
Puebla” by Gabriela Urunuela (Universidad de las AmericasPuebla) and Patricia Plunket (Universidad de las AmericasPuebla); “Cosmovision and Way of Life in the Tula Region: A
Figurine Perspective” [Epiclassic Coyotlatelco figurines from
Chapantongo] authored by Patricia Fournier (Instituto Nacional
de Antropologia e Historia, Mexico, DF); “Buy, Sell, or Trade:
Figurine Workshops and Beyond” [Late Postclassic Aztec
period at Otumba, Mexico and the results of INAA] Cynthia
Otis Charlton (Independent Researcher); and “Fingerprints, Sex,
and Figurines from Snaketown in Southern Arizona” by Susan
L. Stinson (University of Arizona).
Museums and Exhibitions
The Arizona State Museum in Tucson has received a
$400,000 National Park Service Grant as a part of “Save Our
American Treasurers” in its quest to fund a $1.1 million climatecontrolled vault to help to preserve the nation’s largest collection
of Southwestern native pottery. The vault would be 73 feet
long and 32 feet wide, with a glass wall that would allow
museum visitors to view the collection. A “wildly fluctuating
humidity” (15 to 80 percent) is causing destructive salt
efflorescence in the ceramic collection. In the main storage
room which contains 12,000 Anasazi, Mogollon, and Hohokam
vessels, a recent survey found that 18.5 percent of the vessels
had visible salt damage, including most of the 1,000 Hohokam
red-on-buff decorated vessels.
The University of Michigan Museum of Anthropology
(UMMA) in Ann Arbor has components from a number of
important ceramic (and non-ceramic) collections on their
website at
Among these are collections housed in the Asian Range: Koelz
(Tibetan tankas and Kashmiri textiles), Stevens (Chinese textiles
and decorative arts), Robinson (350 ceramic vessels from
Malaysia and Thailand), Guthe (7,500 ceramic vessels from
542 sites in the southern Philippine), and Hester (410 Chinese
and Philippine ceramic vessels). There are sample images and
artifact descriptions for these collections.
The UCLA Fowler Museum of Culture History at the
University of California at Los Angeles has mounted an
exhibition entitled “Moche Fineline Painting of Ancient Peru”
page 18
SAS Bulletin
(16 July 2000 through 18 February 2001) which documents
Moche culture that flourished on the North Coast of Peru from
100-800 CE. The museum’s exhibition is augmented by a catalog
with scholarly essays, Moche Fineline Painting: Its Evolution
and Its Artists written by Christopher B. Donnan and Donna
McClelland (320 pp., 492 color and 55 b/w illustrations, 1 map,
bibliography, ISBN 0-930741-79-X, $39.95, paper). The authors
identify 48 individual Moche artists who painted intricate designs
with multiple figures (human and supernatural). The Fowler
Museum’s website provides additional information about the
exhibit and the catalog at
Bill Adams from Flinders University in Australia has posted
a series of useful “Material Culture Bibliographies and Studies”
— clothing, ceramics, glass, metals, military, and
zooarchaeological categories (to name a few) — which are
collected and maintained at
bibs/index.html Of special note are a “Brick and Tile
Bibliography” by K. Kris Hirst, “A Bibliography of Ceramic
Artifacts” created by William H. Adams, and “Historic and
Prehistoric Native Smoking Pipe Bibliography” by Michael A.
(“Smoke”) Pfeiffer.
Claylab, an English-language resource for clay and clay
minerals is a site located in Heidelberg, Germany that includes
information about new publications, standards, online works,
software, and suppliers of clay products. Claylinks provides
URL hotlinks to organizations such as the Clay Mineral Society,
and journals (Clay and Clay Minerals and Soil Sciences
Online), as well as conferences and courses. Among the useful
links are the Crystallinity Index Standard Homepage (a guide
and database for standardizing XRD determined clay mineral
crystallinity and crystal size data), and geology courses (such
as Paul Schroeder’s GEOL 4550, and Laurence Warr and
Heiko Hoffman’s “Practical Web Course in Clay Mineralogy”).
There is also an online course on SEM from Iowa State
University that has several levels from neophyte to experience
researcher. The links to current and future conferences is
impressive (more than 30 listed as of October 2000. The URL
Also in this realm of materials, equipment, and information
resources is the web site which has
15 homepage categories: Component and Coatings, Consultants,
Equipment and Supplies (Retail and Wholesale), Institutions
(art centers, museums, and galleries), Manufactured Products
(Retail), Materials, Media (books, CD, databases, search
engines, etc.), News, Organizations (arts guilds, professional
societies), Potters, Safety, Schools and Education (seminars
and workshops), Testing and Quality (quality control, ISO), and
Tutorials (material theory to glaze recipes).
MineralWeb, a web site for the 3-D display of mineral
structures, is maintained by the Department of Earth Sciences
at the University of Manchester and may be found at http://
A new pottery e-mail group (discussion list), “arch-pot,”
was founded on 26 June 12000 and is dedicated to British
archaeological pottery of any period (Neolithic, Romano-British,
Anglo-Saxon, Medieval, etc.). It has become a very active list.
To join, send a message to [email protected]
or go to the e-groups website at,/invite/
arch-pot Discussions have included ceramic decoration, pottery
stamps, kiln sites, publication, advice, ceramic sequences, brick
making, and lime cookers.
Association pour les “Journees de la Ceramique is centered
at 14 av. de Caramany, 66720 Rasigueres, France, and has a
website at The site, entirely
in French, has nine links on the homepage: Presentation des
“Journees” et de l’association, Programme 2000,
Experimentations archeologiques, concours de modelage,
Repas Neolithique, Conyacts, Leins (five hotlinks), Poterie du
Carbassou, and Chateu-Musee de Belesta. Of particular
interest are Poterie du Carbassou, which has links to ceramic
patrimony (Celte, Ethnique, Ibere, Mailjacienne, Medievale,
Neolithique, Traditionnelle, Terre vernissee and Gres decore);
Masques; and Recherches (traditional, including Poterie noire
du Portugal and Poterie d’Espagne, and archaeological). The
ceramic replication studies are especially valuable as is the
documentation of the construction of a vaulted kiln. The images
are clear and load quickly.
The Maya Vase Database devised by Justin Kerr is an
extension if his six-volume Maya Vase Books. The database
currently has more than 1,000 copyrighted rollout photographs
depicting scenes and texts found of Maya ceramics. The
database is located on the FAMSI (Foundation for the
Advancement of Mesoamerican Studies Inc.) website at http:/
/ There are four major categories of scenes:
Palace, Mythological, Warrior, and Animal.
Archaeology on the Net at
archaeology/books/index.html has several useful categories:
Under General Books, the category “Ceramics” has 2,191
entries, while “Roman Ceramics” under Classical Archaeology
has 144 entries.
The searchable Anthropological Index Online (AIO) is
accessible at
searchh)bib_ai/anthind and includes 1,150 entries for “pottery”
and 189 for “ceramics.”
“Google,” a major Internet search engine, lists 743,000
entries for ceramics (20,800 for archaeological ceramics), and
684,000 entries for pottery (45,100 for archaeological pottery).
ARCHAEOMETRY 98 Proceedings
Proceedings of the 31 st International Symposium on
Archaeometry, Budapest, 27 April - 1 May 1998. Edited by
Erzsébet Jerem and Katalin T. Biró. BAR: Archaeopress. 2
vols., 800 pp., 126 papers on Biomaterials; Dating; Field
Archaeology; Provenance of Metals; Provenance of Pottery;
Provenance of Stones; Experimental Archaeology; and General
Archaeometry. GBP 84.00 + postage at 10%. Archaeopress,
POB 920, Oxford OX2 7YH, England, UK. tel/fax 44 1865
311914; email: [email protected]; web:
Winter 2000
SAS Bulletin
Book Reviews
Michael D. Glascock, Associate Editor
Beyond the Bloom: Bloom refining and iron artifact
production in the Roman World. David Sim, BAR
International Series 725, 1998. xix+ 155 pp., 90 figures, glossary.
Paperback. Price: not stated. ISBN 0 86054 901 1.
Reviewed by Edward F. Heite, Heite Consulting, Camden,
Delaware 19934 USA
Iron manufacture in antiquity required three distinct steps:
smelting, bloomsmithing, and blacksmithing. Bloomsmithing is
the least understood of these processes. When iron is smelted
by the bloomery process, the resulting raw iron mass (the
bloom) is riddled with slag. Bloomsmiths ejected the slag and
produced a piece of relatively pure metal that a blacksmith
could shape into useful objects. This book explores the craft of
bloomsmithing, in the context of ancient Roman iron artifacts.
David Sim based his study of bloomsmithing on the principle
that “the best way to understand a complex system is to try to
reproduce it.” In the course of reproducing the system, Sim
collected data on fuel use, time requirements, and furnace
Sim begins by briefly summarizing the fundamental role of
relatively cheap iron in the Roman world. In spite of its
importance, he states, “Avery little is known about the way in
which iron ore was mined and processed to produce the wrought
iron and steel artifacts which are found in the archaeological
record.” Even though the stated scope of the study is the entire
Roman iron toolmaking process, its lasting contribution will be
Sim’s bloomsmithing experiments. The chapter on toolmaking
is useful, and the studies of hammerscale will be useful to future
researcher, especially archaeologists working in smithies.
Sim carefully tracked the quantities of materials, fuel, and
time required for each process in each experiment. These
numbers in turn were used to make rough estimates of the
energy and material investiment represented by iron in the
Roman economy.
Most of us probably assume that ancient bloomsmithing
was a relatively straightforward extension of the blacksmith’s
work, in which the bloom was assaulted with hammers and
refined by brute force. Nothing could be farther from the truth,
but this assumption was the starting point of Sim’s experiments.
As the author demonstrated, merely beating the bloom will
cause catastrophic loss of metal.
Experimental archaeologists and historians of technology
have attempted on various occasions to reproduce the bloomery
ironmaking process. Sometimes they have produced identifiable
blooms, but their most extensive product has been a sizable
literature on this phase of the ironmaking process.
Bloomsmithing, on the other hand, has been largely neglected
page 19
by experimenters. Sim summarizes previous bloomery
ironmaking experiments, which have concentrated on the initial
step of creating the bloom, and largely omitted bloomsmithing.
In his effort to re-create the art of bloomsmithing, Sim
collected ancient graphic sources, including illustrations of
curious circular tongs that would play a significant role in the
study. He also worked on the floor of the Blist Hill Ironworks
at Ironbridge Gorge Museum, where modern machinery is used
to refine hot blooms by squeezing out the liquid slag. As Sim
acknowledged, “This experience of working with bloom iron
proved invaluable, for it provided a greater understanding of
the material than can be gained from the literature.” The
squeezing process used today at Blist Hill is effective, but Sim
quickly determined that it is inapplicable to the Roman conditions
he sought to reproduce. Today’s blooms are made from scrap
or pig, rather than ore, as was the case in Roman times; for
purposes of understanding bloomsmithing, this difference was
Experiments were designed with three objectives: to
quantify the time required; to arrive at a design suitable for a
bloomsmith=s hearth; and to quantify the amount of charcoal
consumed. In the process, along the way, the experimenters
recovered forgotten details of the tools and practices.
Initial experiments were predictably a learning process.
After trying in vain to clear hardened slag from the first furnace,
the experimenters concluded: “It is possible that the slag could
be removed while the furnace was still hot.”
In the earliest experiments, about three-quarters of the iron
disappeared from the bloom, which clearly would have been
unacceptable for a bloomsmith working in a Roman legionary
camp. In some cases, no iron survived. Trying to refine the
entire bloom at once was time-consuming and therefore required
excessive amounts of fuel, with little benefit. After nine
experiments, a different approach was tested. Refining whole
blooms clearly could not have been economical.
Bloom experiment 10 marked discovery of a new model
for bloomsmithing. Sim realized that a heated bloom would
naturally break along the concentrations of slag, which was
softer than the adjacent metal. At the outset of this experiment,
he smashed the bloom. It broke along the lines of slag, leaving
lumps of relatively pure iron with slag on the outside, which
could be removed easily by hammering. The problem was to
control the small pieces of iron while removing the slag. Here
pictorial evidence came to the rescue. A Roman tombstone in
the Aquileia Museum is decorated with smith’s tools, including
a pair of tongs with round jaws, which Sim reproduced.
Each bloom fragment was held for working in the circular
jaws, which formed an enclosure in which pieces of iron from
the bloom could be hammered on the anvil. It worked.
The first three experimental blooms processed in the tongs
suffered only 11% loss; 200 g of iron could be produced in only
7 minutes 14 seconds, for a significant saving of time and fuel.
Sim confidently declared that trade secrets of ancient
bloomsmiths had been discovered. Each small piece of the
bloom was compressed by hammering, and then the pieces
were hammer welded together to make billets for blacksmiths.
Sim was able to create billets that resembled known
archaeological specimens.
page 20
SAS Bulletin
The chapter on artifact manufacturing begins from a sound
base of modern experience, as the author notes, “... with the
exception of some types of hammer, ... all the tools required
for the experiments ... were already in my existing kit of
blacksmith’s tools.” It was relatively simple to reproduce the
ancient blacksmith’s work in the environment of a modern
Sim’s experiments emphasize the importance of preserving
craft knowledge that has been passed down. Sim approached
the problem with flawed preconceptions he got from modern
metalworking technology. When that failed, he was forced to
re-invent knowledge that every Roman [and later] bloomsmith
knew from the first day of his apprenticeship. Today’s
blacksmiths, as Sim discovered, suffer a special disadvantage
because they “have little or no experience of wrought niron,
much less bloom iron.” Archaeologists who are not also
blacksmiths, he learned, may not be able to appreciate “the
many subtleties of iron working.”
When he moved on to toolmaking, the author became as
nearly as possible a replica Roman blacksmith, imitating the
output of a legionary smith, converting wrought iron billets into
standard tools, which included a hammer, a stylus, nails,
disposable weapons, a pattern-welded sword and chain mail.
Except for fastidious note-taking, the resercher reproduced the
toolmaker’s work as nearly as possible. Each Roman tool was
reproduced and each step was documented.
Sim documented the time required, the metal and fuel
consumed, and the most likely production sequence of each
tool. Such economic data provided by experimental archaeology
may need correction to account for the experimenter’s lack of
craft experience. The first bolt head took 8 minutes 38 seconds,
while the second was made in 5 minutes 12 seconds. The author
notes, “With practice at this particular item, a production time
of under 5 minutes per item is possible.”
Each toolmaking process is illustrated with particularly good
line drawings, including a diagram of a pole lathe and sketches
comparing Roman and modern methods for fixing a haft to a
Debris, particularly hammer scale, is found on the floor of
any ironworking site, modern or ancient. Archaeologically,
hammer scale may be the only process residue that survives
on the ground. Sim asked if such wastes in the archaeologial
record could be used to distinguish the ironworking activities
that occurred on a site. Toward this end, he examined scale
from his own bloomsmithing and toolmaking sites, an
archaeological site, and five modern working blacksmith forges.
Shape, size, and chemical composition were considered in
distinguishing the scale samples. All hammer scale, the author
concluded, can be described as flakes, spheres., black slag
and white lumps. Using XRF analysis, Sim identified chemical
differences between residues from bloomsmithng, toolmaking,
and welding. Bloomsmithing hammer scale is richer in silicon
than the scale from toolmaking, and the scale around a welding
forge contained the least silicon, presumably because the purest
iron was processed there.
Hammer welding, which requires very high temperatures,
produced the smallest spherical waste, indicating that this class
of scale might be a useful indicator of working temperatures in
any forge site. While the mixtures of particles differed among
the processes, the evidence was insufficient to generalize
predictions of what might be found in future archaeological
sites. This is a line for future research.
Residues from modern blacksmith shops reflected the
varieties of materials, other than iron, that might be encountered
in the course of today’s repair and fabrication business. Such
residues include copper, solder, lead, brass, and wood shavings.
Similar mixtures might be found archaeologically in a village
blacksmith’s shop, as opposed to a production shop on a military
The discussion of hammer scale will be most useful to the
largest number of archaeologists, because this is the most
common residue in a smithy, regardless of the actiity that was
performed there. Internal geography of a blacksmith shop may
be defined by hammer scale.
Generally, according to Sim, scale is found in the form of a
circle, centered just forward and to the left of a right-handed
blacksmith. Distribution maps of scale quantities will be
particularly useful for interpeting blacksmith shops from which
all the furnishings have been removed. Without such guidance
in the interpretation of scale, the only reported floor plan details
frequently have been locations of the anvil base and the fire.
Knowing how to find the blacksmith’s working stance, we can
now recreate the activity areas within a site.
A glossary at the end will be useful for non-blacksmiths.
Overall, this book represents an excellent apology for the
usefulness of experimental archaeology, if that ever was in
doubt. The study fills a gap in the archaeology of ironmaking
technology, but its lasting contribution will undoubtedly be its
prospective role as a guide for archaeologists seeking to
interpret ironworking sites.
Seriation, Stratigraphy and Index Fossils: The Backbone
of Archaeological Dating. Michael J. O’Brien & R. Lee
Lyman, Kluwer Academic / Plenum Publishers: New York,
1999. xi+253pp., 67 figures, 5 tables, index. Price $59.95, ,40.00
(hardbound). ISBN 0-306-46152-8.
Reviewed by Andrew R. Millard, Department of
Archaeology, University of Durham, South Road, Durham,
DH1 3LE, UK.
I offered to review this book because I hoped it would be
a useful textbook for our master’s course in Applied
Chronometry as well as for undergraduate teaching. I also
hoped to learn something of the state-of-the-art in seriation.
My first hope was fulfilled, but not as expected; the second
was disappointed.
This book is not an account or textbook of recent research
in seriation and stratigraphy. Rather it is an account of the
fundamental principles of relative dating illustrated mostly by
their development within Americanist archaeology in the period
1910-1950. However it is not merely an historical account, but
tries to set out rigorously the principles involved within the
context of an explicitly evolutionary approach to archaeology.
Winter 2000
SAS Bulletin
Chapter 1 introduces the basic topic of how time is
measured and how different methods yield different measures
of time as ordinal (relative), interval (absolute) or cyclical. A
very emphatic argument is made that we should recognise what
type of measure we are using and not confuse them. The
chapter ends with a brief introduction to how we create units
to measure time, which leads on to the next chapter.
Chapter 2 considers a fundamental component of seriation:
the type. We all think we know what a type is, but this treatment
is both clear and thought provoking. It also offers a very clear
reminder, based on the work of James A. Ford in the 1930s
that “artifact types are nothing more than tools created and
used to order archaeological materials”. This is a very important
point: types are created, ideational units, and we should not
treat them as if they were empirical, directly observable units.
Having thus laid the foundations of the nature of time and
of typology, the book moves on in the next four chapters to
consider methods of seriation, stratigraphy, and cross-dating.
Chapter 3 introduces the fundamental concepts of seriation.
O’Brien and Lyman argue that all seriation is dependent on
two sorts of continuity being present in the set of types under
consideration: historical continuity and heritable continuity.
Historical continuity is the similarity of objects due to
chronological closeness and is presumed to reflect heritable
continuity, which is similarity due to “common descent”. Many
parallels are drawn with biological evolution, particularly the
need to be aware of homologous and analogous traits. The
authors also refer to the “debate over whether similar
archaeological phenomena owe their similarity to common
heritage or adaptive convergence”. Although in Darwinian
evolution analogous traits arise by adaptive convergence, it is
not clear to me that convergence of traits in archaeological
types is necessarily adaptive, as decorative features may
converge for cultural rather than adaptive reasons. Inheritance
amongst types also differs from biological inheritance, as a
type may inherit traits from more than one preceding type, but
a species cannot inherit traits from more than one preceding
species. These important caveats are overlooked, presumably
because of the authors’ strong precommitment to a Darwinian
evolutionary paradigm for archaeology. The final part of Chapter
3 introduces phyletic seriation where artifacts are ordered by
changes in attributes. One example given is the developmental
continuum from Clovis points into Dalton points, which can be
obscured by the assignment of all points to one or other of
these ideational units.
Chapter 4 discusses frequency and occurrence seriation.
Frequency seriation is the form that is familiar to most
archaeology students, where a successful seriation may be
represented by a “battleship” curve. Less common, but at times
useful, is occurrence seriation where only the presence or
absence of types is used to seriate. Three basic requirements
are identified: (i) assemblages of similar duration, the shorter
the better, (ii) assemblages from the same local area, and (iii)
assemblages all from one cultural tradition. There is an excellent
discussion of frequency seriation, its assumptions and limitations,
but, because of the authors’ self imposed historical limits to
their discussion, computer-based statistical methods for
seriation are not discussed. This is one of the major omissions
page 21
of the book, as such techniques dominate current application
of seriation, and can help to deal with one of the limits of manual
seriation, namely that “chronologically useful types cannot
‘reappear’ at a later date” (p. 29) (see, for example, Buck &
Sahu 2000). The chapter ends with a discussion of the temporal
resolution of seriation methods, where the authors note that
“types that produce good seriations are likely to have a relatively
neutral adaptive value”, which again confirms my suspicion
that a selectionist view is not useful in seriation and that some
of the discussion in Chapter 2 is irrelevant.
“Superposition and stratigraphy: measuring time
discontinuously” is the title of Chapter 5. Of this 44-page chapter,
31 pages are devoted to an historical account of the
development of stratigraphic excavation, which while relevant,
and showing up some general misconceptions, seems to be
overlong. In their discussion of this topic the authors reiterate
a point which all archaeologists must remember: you cannot
necessarily equate the time of deposition (which is related to
stratigraphy) to the time of creation of the artifacts found in
the deposit. That this needs to be drilled into all of us
archaeologists is demonstrated on p. 146, where the authors
do just this, albeit with a geological example. In the example, a
river deposits material eroded from 80Ma old limestone, which
is covered by local organic debris over a century and in turn
the river covers this with material eroded from 235Ma old
limestone. If we excavated at this point “we would have three
strata in chronological order relative to when they were
deposited but the ages of the sediments themselves, from bottom
to top would be 80 million years old, roughly 50 years old and
235 million years old.” No! The sediments qua sediments have
ages equal to their ages of deposition. Even the particles in the
first and third sediments cannot be said to have the ages quoted,
as one cannot necessarily equate the time of deposition of
sedimentary limestones to the time of creation of the particles
in them. A much clearer discussion of this sort of geological
process with a terminology which might be adapted to
archaeological situations is given by Pell et al. (1997). More
importantly the authors assume throughout that “artifacts usually
occur within non-cultural, or natural sediments” (p. 147). This
may be true in North American prehistory, but try telling that
to a European medievalist or the excavator of a tell!
Archaeological stratigraphy frequently is not equivalent to
geological stratigraphy, as Harris (1989) has shown, and this
chapter is much the poorer for ignoring this fact. The chapter
concludes with a reminder that stratigraphic excavtion gives a
discontinuous measure of time with breaks at stratigraphic
Cross-dating and index fossils are the subject of another
lengthy historical treatment in Chapter 6. Again comparison is
made with biostratigraphy, which uses very similar techniques.
O’Brien and Lyman also manage to fall into another of their
own traps. The trap was set back in Chapter 2 where we are
told that species are “collections of individuals that look similar
and share the same isolating mechanisms” (p. 52), implying
that a species is an ideational construct just like an
archaeological type. Further we should not conflate an individual
artefact (or animal) with its type (or species) as that is conflation
of empirical and ideational units (p. 51). The trapper is trapped
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SAS Bulletin
on p.204 where “biological species do often interbreed”.
Individuals from two species may interbreed, but ideational units
do not breed!
Chapter 7 is a summary of the book with some wider
philosophical discussion, as the title indicates: “Final thoughts
on archaeological time: a clash of two metaphysics”. This
discussion looks at science versus common sense in
archaeology, and partly addresses the perennial question of if
and when archaeology is a science. This is followed by the
résumé of the book with a series of rather opaque references
to the essentialist-materialist paradox in archaeology (no attempt
is made to define either term). I suspect one needs to have
read O’Brien’s (1996) edited volume Evolutionary
Archaeology to fully comprehend them.
Overall this is a useful book. Its strengths lie in its clear
discussion of time and typology, its explicit consideration of the
assumptions of relative dating techniques, and its emphasis on
precise use of language. Its weaknesses lie in its strongly
Americanist bias, which will put off some readers from
elsewhere in the world, and its historical perspective which
limits its consideration of methodology. Omissions of major
significance are the lack of an account of the use of
correspondence analysis for seriation, and the absence of any
reference to a quarter of a century’s work on specifically
archaeological stratigraphy since the seminal work of Harris
(1975). With these caveats I shall be recommending it to my
students, because there is little else on the subject, and nothing
else as good.
This book has shown me that we need another book on
this subject, one with the same rigorous approach, but which
includes more recent developments. In the meantime, the final
paragraph sums up why you should read this one:
“One could adopt the attitude that none of this matters
since radiometric dating has alleviated our chronological
problems but knowledge of how methods of relative dating
work is crucial to successful archaeological research absolute
radiometric methods are no panacea; one needs to evaluate
and test the results obtained and relative dating methods provide
one source of test implications the only way to [do] archaeology
is to retain and to understand and supplement with radiometric
dating techniques the relative dating methods we have discussed
here” (p. 226, original emphasis).
Buck, C.E. & S.J. Sahu. 2000. Bayesian models for relative,
archaeological chronology building. Applied Statistics, in
Harris, E.C. 1989. Principles of Archaeological Stratigraphy
(2nd ed.). London & New York: Academic Press.
Harris, E.C. 1975. The stratigraphic sequence: a question of
time. World Archaeology 7: 109-121.
O’Brien, M.J. (ed.). 1996. Evolutionary archaeology: theory
and application. Salt Lake City: University of Utah Press.
Pell, S.D., I.S. Williams & A.R. Chivas. 1997. The use of
protolith zircon-age fingerprints in determining the
protosource areas for some Australian dunes sands.
Sedimentary Geology 109: 233-260.
The Maritime Heritage of the Cayman Islands. Roger C.
Smith, University Press of Florida: Gainsville, 2000. xxii +230
pp., 82 figures, 9 maps, 3 appendices, index. Price: $49.95
(cloth). ISBN: 0-8130-1733-4
Reviewed by William E. Boyd, School of Resource Science
& Management, Southern Cross University, New South
Wales 2480, Australia
This book is an elegant account of exploration and
discovery. It is an account which opens with a description of
the joys of fieldwork – surely one of the vitalizing aspects of
archaeological and geoarchaeological research – and an
introduction to the Cayman Islands Project which has run since
the late 1970s. The Project represents the author’s research
under the auspices of the Institute of Nautical Archaeology at
Texas A&M University, and focuses on the site recording of
archaeological sites on the three islands of Little Cayman,
Cayman Brac and Grand Cayman, The book is a synthesis of
that work. The story of the history and archaeology uncovered
by the Project illustrates the process of academic research,
and the reminds us of the intimate links between work in the
field, the laboratory and the library. It is also, first and foremost,
an account of historic exploration and discovery, of a place at
once at the centre of things and yet isolated from the
mainstream. This is a place discovered by Christopher
Columbus in 1503 and subsequently inhabited by of pirates,
fishermen and seaman, a place of a great abundance of sea
turtles and the crocodiles which gave their name to the islands,
and a place of great riches and equally great disasters. While
the author does not claim to present a complete picture of the
history of the Cayman Islands, he does explore key elements
of the maritime history and culture of these islands, reviewing
the emergence of the distinctive Caymanian culture.
The book comprises six chapters, appended with three
transcripts of significant historical documents. The chapters
chart the paths of exploration and discovery woven through
the book, opening with an introduction to the Cayman Islands
Project itself (the Preface and Chapter 1). Chapter 2, “Founded
Upon the Seas”, provides a traditional regional and descriptive
geography of the Islands. This geography places the islands
and the project in context, and is replete with discussions of
the cartographic history of the islands, past and present landand sea-use, the naming of the islands and of the place names
of the islands, and, of course, the hurricanes which in many
ways have played a major role in shaping the culture of the
islands (of which more below). Chapter 3 cuts to the first of
three central themes in the history of the Cayman Islands. Under
the title “Shoal of Sea Turtles”, this chapter describes the
abundance of this natural resource, charting the growth and
demise of a rich environmental resource extraction industry.
We are told, at the close of this chapter, that “today, many
Europeans and most Americans have never tasted the unique
flavor of sea turtle ... [and] … Caymanians no longer set sail
on turtling voyages”. This is very much the tale of an industry
and associated culture now almost at extinction, along with the
very resource, so abundant in the past, that formed the
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foundation of both industry and culture. Chapter 4 brings us to
the second distinctive aspect of the Caymanian history and
culture: “Crocodiles and Pirates” draws together the historical
evidence for both the interaction between the early explorers
and settlers and these “monstrous Crocodiles” , the buccaneers,
pirates and corsairs who fled to these islands, and the
archaeology which brings them all to life in the present. The
final strand of Caymanian culture is then described in the
following chapter, “Catboats and Schooners”, where the more
peaceful maritime culture of the Caymanians is described,
focusing on the boating and sailing traditions developed to meet
the various needs of an island-bound society. From local fishing
along the shores and reefs to long-distance journeying, the
Caymanians developed technology and skills as a basis of a
maritime culture and legacy that would hold them in good stead
for over three centuries. All, of course, was not perfect in
paradise, and Chapter 6, “A Graveyard of Ships”, reminds us
of the perils of a maritime existence. From the earliest days,
ships and boats have floundered on the reefs, creating one of
the richest maritime archaeological resources available. This
chapter describes the evidence available to archaeologists (and,
unfortunately, looters and salvors) from the wrecks of the early
castaways and pirates through to shipping losses at the end of
the twentieth century. The short conclusion draws all these
strands together, focussing on the now-pressing need for
management, conservation and preservation of the rich and
unique cultural heritage resources of the Cayman Islands.
Protective legislation is now in place, government is taking note
and developing policy, the national local museums are
commencing the major task of leading a determined
management role, and an international network of interested
bodies may be able to support these local efforts. The
appendices contain the deposition of Samuel Hutchinson, an
eyewitness account of the 1669 Spanish corsair raid on Little
Cayman, Lieutenant Alfred Carpenter’s 1880 observations on
Little Cayman, details from the first census of Cayman, taken
in 1802. Finally, this book is supported by extensive notes and a
full bibliography including manuscript, printed and oral sources.
The book is well indexed, cleanly produced and abundantly
illustrated with black and white line drawings and photographs.
The author has made expedient use of historic maps, line
etchings and photographs.
This book illustrates what archaeology and archaeological
sciences do best: it integrates many strands of enquiry, building
bit by bit the layers a history which may explain much of the
present geography and culture of the islands and their place in
the region. The work draws on detailed manuscript research,
personal interviews, physical recording of submerged sites, and
intricate restoration of artifacts shrouded in centuries of marine
organisms and sediments. In doing so, Roger Smith provides
an account of human endeavor and the creation and emergence
of a distinctive island culture based initially on secrecy but more
important then on access to one of the world’s riches marine
resources. Smith is also making a case for active and directed
heritage management. The opening paragraphs of this book
recount the events of August 6th 1980, when the Project nearly
became unstuck during what turned out to be one of the
Caribbean’s most severe hurricanes. Surviving the worst that
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nature can throw at a tiny island in a wild sea, the project team
emerged to survey the damage inflicted on the rich cultural
heritage of the seas around the islands. The description of the
significant loss of the recorded submarine heritage provide a
salient warning about both the fragility of cultural heritage
artifacts, and the pressing need for continuing recording of those
remains of the past which inform and fill out our histories.
While Smith’s intention appears to be to record the heritage
of a history and culture which is clearly in decline, if not on the
verge of extinction, before it is lost and forgotten, the book
seems to me to serve several other functions. First, this book is
a carefully crafted and balanced case study of coastal
archaeological research, a case study many undergraduate
students will delight in reading. Throughout the book, reference
is made to the people involved in this research, the academic
staff, students and local informants and residents, serving a
useful and timely reminder that such work is centrally about
people and their cultures. The book is also a fine illustration of
the ways in which the disparate strands of historical and
archaeological research can be woven together. The ample
illustrations reflect this: reproductions of historic documents
and maps are presented side by side with historic photographs
of the turtle fishing in progress and photographs of the team
undertaking submarine surveys of wrecks, conservation work
in the laboratory, or interviewing informants in their own homes.
Finally, the book also presents a salient warning about natural
resource depletion and cultural loss, and as such would serve
as a perfect case study text in any environmental management
or cultural studies course. And of course, the book is also jolly
good read. Good writing is the magical process of transporting
the reader to another place and time: how better to do it than
with the pirates (Blackbeard and the outlaws Edward Low
and George Lowther strut proudly through these pages and
corsairs raid our imagination), the “monstrous crocodiles” and
unimaginably great shoals of sea turtles, independent and selfsufficient sailors, and graveyards of shipwrecks? This is the
stuff of Treasure Island”!
Indians of the Greater Southeast: Historical Archaeology
and Ethnohistory. Bonnie G. McEwan, University Press of
Florida, 2000. xvi+392 pp, 26 maps, 9 tables, index. Price: $55
(cloth). ISBN: 0-8130-1778-5.
Reviewed by Thomas Foster, Department of Anthropology,
Pennsylvania State University, University Park, PA 16802
I would like to begin by commending Bonnie McEwan for
organizing this volume and the authors for contributing to it.
This is a much-welcomed summary of the southeastern Indians.
Many of these cultures have witnessed a great deal of research
recently and this volume is, to my knowledge, the only work
that summarizes it. The historic period in the southeast has
great potential for research. The combinations of archaeological
and ethnohistoric data have allowed us to trace the population
history of specific towns in some cases in detail that was
impossible previously. These chapters briefly summarize this
and other research in the southeast.
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Research on the Timucua has been active. Jerald Milanich’s
chapter summarizes their social, linguistic, and demographic
history based on this research. In contrast to some linguistic
evidence the recent archaeological work demonstrates that the
Timucua originated in the southeastern United States. Their
early history is documented through Spanish mission interaction
and recent archaeological research. This work shows fantastic
population reduction that has been documented elsewhere in
the southeast. The Spanish mission system in Florida was very
successful at converting the Indians. Timucua culture was
drastically altered socially, ecologically, materially, and politically.
The chapter by Rebecca Saunders overviews the Guale
ethnohistory using recent and newly translated documents.
Archaeological and osteological research shows that the Guale
are descended from Indians living on the Georgia coast for
hundreds of years. The ancestral Guale were organized into
“complex chiefdoms” where power was inherited matrilineally
to males. Males inherited status from their mother’s brother.
These chiefs only held coercive power. Real power was held
by a council of elders. Saunders reviews the archaeological
precedents to the Guale including the residential structures,
subsistence, health, and cosmology. After years of resistance,
the Guale accepted Spanish missionization. This resulted in the
concentration of settlements. Resistance, slave raids, and
population loss due to foreign disease eroded the Spanish
mission influence among the Guale though. Saunders provides
a good overview of these processes on late Guale politics,
settlements, labor organization, and village life of this group of
coastal Georgia Indians that were probably extinct by the end
of the 16th century.
The Apalachees have received much research although
most of it is ethnohistorical. Bonnie McEwan reviews the few
archaeological sites that have been investigated. During the
late prehistoric period, the Apalachee were organized as
chiefdoms around mounds and outlying settlements. The
protohistoric period witnessed Spanish exploration, consequently
we know more, though not much, about the social organization
of this period. In the early 15th century missionization began.
Nine of eleven missions have been tested. One, San Luis, has
received more investigation and McEwan concentrates the rest
of the chapter on this site.
San Luis was occupied by both Apalachee and Spanish.
This and other demographic variables of San Luis indicate that
it may not be a good model for the majority of the Apalachee
missions. McEwan concludes by describing the presumably
contemporaneous native regions of the site: the Franciscan
church, the Apalachee council house, and a chief’s residence.
The Chickasaw are one of the better studied of the
southeastern Indians. Jay Johnson’s chapter summarizes this
research. These Indians have been documented by Spanish,
English, and French sources, which accounts for why we know
so much about them. In addition, Johnson reviews the intensive
archaeological work in this region, both the older work and the
very recent. Much of the archaeological research has focused
on ceramics. Consequently, it is possible to distinguish between
Chckasaw, Choctow, and Natchez material culture. An
interesting feature of the late Chcickasaw culture change is
the apparent population dispersion from centralized villages of
prehistoric times. This may have been occurring elsewhere in
the southeast, namely among the Creek (Waselkov and Smith,
Chapter 9), in response to the increase in cattle husbandry.
The Caddo are less documented than other groups in this
book. The Spanish and French history of this region is mostly
centered on the Hasinai and Great Bend communities.
Consequently, the Hasinai are frequently used as models for
all the Caddo. Archaeological research in the region is lacking
but Ann Early reviews what work has been done. Unfortunately,
no historically known settlements have been discovered but
this area of research promises to be as useful as it has
elsewhere in the southeast.
The Natchez were organized into powerful chiefdoms at
the time of the first contact by the Spanish in the 16th century.
Yet roughly a century later, they were defeated and dispersed
by French soldiers. Karl Lornez’s chapter addresses this issue
and why such an apparently powerful chiefdom that survived
could have disintegrated. This chiefdom apparently survived
the European diseases that weakened other chiefdoms of the
southeast. A significant part of this chapter discusses the
Natchez descent system and the nature of the chief Great Sun’s
political authority. Lastly, archaeological evidence from central
and outlying burials indicate that prestige items and presumably
status were relatively more evenly distributed than ethnohistoric
descriptions would suggest.
The Quapaw were relatively recent immigrants to the
Lower Mississippi valley. Although there is linguistic and
historical evidence of this migration, interestingly, the material
culture is difficult to distinguish from the indigenous populations.
This phenomenon can be seen elsewhere in the southeast. For
example, some of the Lower Creek spoke radically different
languages yet it is difficult to distinguish them archaeologically.
The Quapaw were not as politically organized as some of their
neighbors. George Sabo argues for a tribal level of organization
based on historical references. This chapter is mostly a review
of the interaction and culture change that occurred among the
Quapaw as a result of European contact. Some of these
changes were consolidation of settlements and a switch from
horticultural/ foraging economy to a frontier exchange economy.
Because of their proximity to European settlement, the
Cherokee are one of the best documented and mapped of the
southeastern Indians. In addition, archaeological investigation
has been occurring at Cherokee sites for over one hundred
years and relatively intensively over the last few decades. The
proximity of the Cherokee to European settlement also
influenced the culture history of this Indian group. Gerald
Schroedl reviews the archaeological changes observed and
historical events from the era of Spanish exploration up to
removal. The Cherokee are a useful group to study for
acculturation because of the differential effects of the European
society on the material, social, political, cosmological, and
subsistence culture of these southeastern Indians.
The next three chapters summarize the Creek Indians and
their descendants, the Seminole. The Creeks were a
consolidation of linguistically diverse but culturally similar
populations. This is an exciting time for Creek research because
of the active archaeological research and long history of
ethnohistoric work in this region. Greg Waselkov and Marvin
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SAS Bulletin
Smith review the four regional divisions of the Upper Creek.
This region has had avocational and professional research since
the early 20th century that has successfully focused on identifying
specific, historically known towns. We are getting to the point
of being able to archaeologically trace the individual migratory
history of specific towns and the cultural changes that they
underwent in response to European interaction. The chapter
by Waselkov and Smith reviews the past and recent
archaeological investigations of the Upper Creek. John Worth’s
chapter focuses mostly on the early history of the Lower Creek.
He reviews and reinterprets some of the town-site
identifications and particularly the recent refinements of changes
in material culture. Lastly, Brent Weisman focuses mostly on
the archaeological evidence of Seminole identity. He includes
a review of the modern history of these Indians in Florida.
Science and Technology in Historic Preservation.
Advances in Archaeological and Museum Science 4. Ray
A. Williamson and Paul R. Nickens, eds. Kluwer Academic/
Plenum Publishers, 2000. xiii +357 pp. $85.00 (cloth) ISBN 0306-46212-5.
Reviewed by Joseph H. Labadie, Southwest Texas Junior
College, Del Rio, TX, and John Antoine Labadie, University
of North Carolina-Pembroke, Pembroke, NC
This publication represents the fourth in a series focused
on “Advances in Archeological and Museum Science” under
the sponsorship of the Society of Archeological Sciences (SAS).
The stated purpose of this series of publications is to “provide
summaries of advances in various topics” related to archeology,
preservation technology, and museum conservation. The
overarching philosophy evident in this interdisciplinary series
evidences the SAS contention that “physical science techniques
and methods constitute an essential component of contemporary
archeological field and laboratory studies.” This approach is
well supported by the wide variety of well written works
provided by the contributors in this text.
This book has its origins in a 1986 study prepared by the
Office of Technology Assessment (OTA) for the Congress of
the United States “Technologies for Prehistoric and Historic
Preservation” (U.S. Congress, 1986). The purpose of the study
was to review how Federal agencies were implementing the
numerous laws relating to preservation by focusing on the
importance of technological advances in heritage preservation
and management. The original OTA study was a springboard
that lead to the establishment of the National Center for
Preservation Technology and Training (NCPTT) within the
National Park Service. Today, the NCPTT is the leader among
Federal agencies for technical issues in historic preservation
and conservation. This organization not only develops and
facilitates training for federal, state, and local resource
preservation specialists, it also acts as a funding source and a
clearinghouse for research and applied studies involving the
application of a wide variety of technologies to cultural
resources management issues.
page 25
The book is divided into four primary sections (Part 1:
Introduction; Part II: Discovery, Documentation, and Analysis;
Part III: Restoration and Conservation; Part: IV Management,
Maintenance, and Protection) which, except for Part I and
Part II, has multiple chapters each of which focus on specific
technological applications that address common resource
management issues faced regularly by most public/private land
managers. The general layout of each chapter is similar:
abstract, introduction, description of the technique, special
problems, applications or case studies, and conclusions. Each
chapter presents a dizzying amount of information. Adequate
assimilation of the work of Chapter is no easy task given that
each author attempts to summarize years of past research,
provide a current bibliography, and present the information in a
style that would be of interest to general readers while not
putting the specialist to sleep.
Part I (Introduction) provides the reader with a summary
of the major trends in technology transfer to historic
preservation over the past two decades, and is an essential
primer to understanding the evolution of public policy and how
we got to where we are today. Although intended to be merely
an overview, additional chapters addressing specific trends,
such as the lack of digital standards, would have given the
reader a better understanding for context of the seminal works
presented in later chapters of the book.
Part II (Discovery, Documentation, and Analysis) presents
the meat of the technological revolution in cultural resources
fieldwork that allow researchers to maximize data collection
while minimizing the destructive effects on the irreplaceable
resources that are the object of their study. The chapters in
Part II provide the reader with an excellent review on such
topics as geophysical techniques used to identify/document
terrestrial archeological sites, technology transfers from
commercial and military sectors to underwater archeological
situations, absolute dating techniques for archeological
materials, non-destructive techniques for evaluating historic
structures, and analytical techniques for determining the origins
of historic objects.
Part III (Restoration and Conservation) is a little thin by
comparison to other sections of the book This section fails to
cover most of the critical issues (except technologies used for
wood preservation and objects recovered from underwater
sites) faced by conservators and museum specialists who are
responsible for the long-term well-being of the archeological
and historical objects that collectively represent who we were,
at other times, and in other places. To some, this oversight may
represent the historic indifference that field researchers
traditionally have taken towards collections management once
they have decided to move on to another site. There are still
many archeologists out there, with advanced degrees, that never
had to take a Museum Sciences or similar course prior to
graduation; this section of the book does little to advance the
current issues or explain the critical needs related to museum
management. Collections Management, in both the public and
private sections, have made quantum leaps in recent years in
far-ranging areas such as: metal, glass, and textile conservation;
paper, film, and digital archives standardization and preservation;
exhibit design and accountability, accessibility, and availability
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SAS Bulletin
of collections to the general public which have, in many cases,
been paying for their management through their tax dollars.
The information is out there, it’s just not in this book.
Part IV (Management, Maintenance, and Protection) is a
must read for all public and private land managers and all
archeology students, now matter how advanced. The chapters
in this section lift the veil off of the how managers manage the
core issues of heritage preservation, from basic philosophies
to the appropriate levels of technology necessary to insure that
future generations get the opportunity to see and enjoy what
we are trying to preserve today. The chapter on the uses of
computers applications in cultural resources management
highlights some of the better-known (and tax-payer funded)
projects throughout the United States and, to some degree,
illustrates how different public agencies would rather re-invent
the wheel rather that selectively adapt something that could be
bought right off the shelf. There is a chapter that does well in
explaining the context of legislative mandates, and takes a costbenefit analysis approach while discussing selected cultural
resources management programs.
For the manager of historic sites, perhaps the two most
important chapters in this book are to be found in Part IV:
Chapter 13 (Technologies Against Looting and Vandalism, by
Judith Reed and Joan Schneider) and Chapter 14 (Technologies
for In-Place Protection and Long-Term Conservation of
Archaeological Sites, by Paul R. Nickens). With the exception
of these two chapters, the majority of the rest of the book
focuses on technology transfers that provide new avenues that
improve site identification, documentation, data management,
and to a lesser degree conservation —which are all important.
Chapter 13 provides an excellent discussion on remote,
electronic surveillance devices while clearly pointing out the
advantages and limitations of various systems. Although in use
by resource managers since 1983, only recently have such
systems come down in price (and gone up in reliability) to where
they are now a viable option for almost any protection situation
and can be operated and maintained by a mere novice. They
are more reliable than humans, work twenty-four hours a day,
and generally cost far less than the one-year salary of a
individual assigned to protect a site. In an era of cost benefit
analysis, electronic surveillance systems are the wave of the
future in site protection.
Destruction of non-structural archeological sites by a
myriad natural physical-biological-chemical processes claim
more sites on an annual basis than by all types of vandalism
combined. In Chapter 14, the author details a number of case
studies from around the United States that focus on
archeological site protection strategies which have been
borrowed from civil engineering. Techniques that have proven
track records in maintaining archeological site integrity include
revegetation, site reburial, rock stabilization, the placement of
riprap and revetments, and the use of geotextile fabric for
erosion and sediment control. These studies, and many others,
can be obtained through several different agencies, including
the National Park Service (Archeological Assistance Program
Technical Briefs), the National Clearinghouse for Archeological
Site Stablization (University of Mississippi), and the U.S. Army
Engineer Waterways Experiment Station, Vicksburg, MS
(Archaeological Sites Protection and Preservation Notebook).
In conclusion, Science and Technology in Historic
Preservation: Advances in Archaeological and Museum
Science, Volume 4 is a excellent text for the general reader as
well as all serious students of archeology. Additionally, this
volume might well be on the suggested reading list for all
graduate students in anthropology and archeology as it certainly
provides more than adequate summaries of technologies and
developments in the various field and disciplines encompassed
within the preservation sciences.
The authors and the volume editors have followed their
“prescription” to keep readers abreast of continued
developments and concerns within this ever-evolving and truly
multi-disciplinary approaches to the discovery; recording and
measurement; analysis and evaluation; restoration, conservation
and maintenance; protection from catastrophic losses; data and
information storage and retrieval; and public education and
involvement which, taken altogether, are the concerns of historic
preservationists everywhere. Well done.
Interpretations of Native North American Life: Material
Contributions to Ethnohistory. Edited by Michael S.
Nassaney & Eric S. Johnson, University Press of Florida, 2000.
xv + 464 pp., 78 b&w illustrations and maps, 9 tables,
bibliography, index. Price $55.00 (cloth) ISBN 0-292-73109-4.
Reviewed by Raymond A Bucko, Department of Sociology
and Anthropology, Creighton University, Omaha, NE 68178
USA. email [email protected]
Ethnohistory, the conjoining of anthropological theory and
historical research, has proved an invaluable tool for deeper
insight into the study of non-Western cultures. Multidisciplinary
in its approach, ethnohistory calls on anthropological theory,
primary source historical data, oral testimony, and material
culture remains to piece together information to construct a
fuller, and more multi-perspectival portrait of the past.
This volume grew out of a symposium at the 1995 meeting
of the American Society for Ethnohistory at Western Michigan
University in Kalamazoo. All the articles in this collection with
the exception of one by Larissa Thomas are expanded versions
of those conference papers. The goal of the symposium was
to envision ways to more actively utilize items of material
culture, either in the archaeological record or from artifacts in
museums and other collections in ethnohistorical investigations.
Both the conference itself and this subsequent volume have
succeeded handsomely in achieving this goal.
Michael Nassanye, associate professor of anthropology at
Western Michigan University, and Eric Johnson, preservation
planner with the Massachusetts Historical Commission, provide
an astute introduction to the volume, focusing on the central
importance of material culture for expanding historical
knowledge of Native peoples, and explaining the methodological
approaches inherent in ethnohistory. The work focuses on three
processes: the creation, maintenance and transformations of
ethnic identity in Native communities. This emphasis provides
Winter 2000
SAS Bulletin
a corrective to the popular notion of Native cultures as timeless
entities existing only in the past as well as the idea that Native
cultures were simply acted upon rather than acted to shape
their own futures.
What is unique in this work is that the primary data for
these conclusions are gleaned from the physical remains of
the culture, carefully analyzed and interpreted in each article
as essential to the ethnohistorical method. Sanguine in the
central role of artifacts in decoding history, the editors state
their central thesis: “Artifacts may be less constrained by some
of the biases of written works because they are the direct
products of Native hands and therefore originate within a Native
worldview”. (8) The editors are also optimistic concerning the
role of archaeology in enhancing the analytical potential of the
ethnohistorical project: “As experts in the analysis of the material
world, archeologists and their associates in art history and other
related disciplines are well poised to unlock the hidden meanings
that art, artifacts, and landscapes held to their makers, users,
and viewers. Using a holistic and comparative methodology,
they juxtapose objects, texts, oral accounts and other source
materials from the present and the past to explore structure,
action, and outcome” (21).
While the authors in this book stress the centrality of
artifacts in interpreting the ethnohistorical record, they are
consistently careful and cautious in the interpretation of material
culture. They recognize their own cultural and temporal
remoteness from the artifacts themselves and the difficulty of
accurately interpreting thought through the examination of
material production. While this gives a cast of inconclusiveness
to the majority of the articles, the explorations of the possibilities
of interpretations are honest and forthright concerning what
can be definitely said as well as what further evidence might
be needed, and how one might go about conducting future
The editors divide the book into three parts. Part I:
Ethnogenesis: The Creation, Maintenance, and Transformation
of Ethnic Identity, investigates how Native cultures, themselves
dynamic systems, actively produce material markers for
purposes of identity in a world of increasing European incursions.
This section consists in 5 articles. Kathleen Cande,
archaeologist with the Arkansas Archaeological Survey and
history graduate student at the University of Arkansas, explores
techniques in expanding historical knowledge of Native –
European interactions in eastern Arkansas from 1541-1682.
Facing a paucity of data as well as conflicting and obscure
textual reports, the author proposes careful typological analysis
of ceramics as a means of establishing the historical arrival
and establishment of the Quapah. Ritual, as described in various
texts, and material culture are key to establishing the origin,
identity, continuity and adaptation of cultural groups in this
region. James Pendergast, doctor of science (Hons. Causa.)
at McGill University, investigates the question of who were
the Iroquois encountered by Cartier in 1535 at Stadacona and
Hochelaga, focusing on the importance archaeological data to
establish their identity as most probably a distinct group in the
St. Laurence area and not one of the “Five Nations” Iroquois
of what is now New York State. John Staeck, professor of
anthropology at the College of DuPage, Illinois, proposes the
page 27
use of myth to ascertain Ho-Chunk (Winnebago) social
structures to link the physical expressions of these arrangements
with the archaeological record to establish the historical origins
of this people. Eric Johnson, preservation planner with the
Massachusetts Historical Commission, proposes that the stylistic
consistence of Shantokware pottery indicates a specific and
distinctive identity construction for the 17th Century Mohegan
around Fort Shanto and expresses strong community solidarity.
The author suggest that while the more eclectic pottery styles
of other Algonkian groups suggest a fluidity of political and
social structures, there is a distinctive identity among the
Mohegan despite their multinational composition. The last article
in this section, by Susan Neill , curator of textiles and social
history at the Atlanta History Center, proposes the
establishment of a stylistic and symbolic typology of ribbon
work garments from the Great Lakes Region in order to
understand better the dynamics of dress as an identity marker.
Key to this article is the use of oral testimony from living Native
ribbon workers.
The second section of this work, Change and Continuity in
Daily Life, examines the use of archaeology and, in the final
piece, art history to further contextualize the lives of North
American natives. Retired Marquette University professor of
Alice Kehoe interprets the remains of Francois’ House, an
independent French trading post in Saskatchewan with a
particular focus on gender relations recoverable from the
archaeological record and the importance of archaeology,
especially where written documentation fails or ignores specific
groups or classes of peoples. Brooke Arkush, associate
professor of anthropology at Weber State University in Ogden
Utah, examines cultural continuities and adaptations among the
Paiutes of Mono Basin area of eastern California through the
analysis of archaeological remains of a domestic site, suggesting
that these areas are particularly apt for recovering information
on Native acculturation patterns. Sean Dunham, staff
archaeologist at the Commonwealth Cultural Resources Group
in Jackson, Michigan, solves the mystery of the function of
cache pits at a specific site (pits have different uses in different
areas) using archaeological analysis, particularly flotation,
physical locations from settlements, and historical
documentation. He also stresses the importance of gendered
use of physical space, a theme found in many of the articles in
this collection. In a brief though exceptionally well-written piece,
Carol Mason, professor of anthropology at Lawrence
University, and Margaret Holman, research associate at the
Michigan State University Museum, suggest that since about
all the written evidence concerning the origins of maple sugaring
among Natives has been analyzed and has proven inconclusive
in determining whether or not this was a pre-contact industry,
the very elusive key to solving this historical conundrum is in
archaeological evidence, despite the unlikelihood of sugar
residue surviving over time. Catherine Carlson, professor of
Social and Environmental Studies at University College of the
Cariboo, Kamloops, British Columbia, proposes an archaeology
of resistance, exploring techniques for demonstrating how
material artifacts might reflect strategies of cultural
conservatism by examining the remains of Fort Kamloops, a
post on the Thompson River as well as the indigenous sites
page 28
SAS Bulletin
around the fort. Balanced in its views of accommodation and
resistance and the limitations of interpretation, Carlson’s
research stands as an exemplary instance of collaboration
between archaeology and indigenous peoples. Shifting to art
history and archaeology, Mark Miller, doctoral candidate in art
history at the University of Delaware, utilizes artistic
representation (images produced by George Catlin, Karl
Bodmer and the Mandan Mato-Topa), archaeology, and
ethnohistorical data to search out the objective details and
recognize the culture bound tropes of Catlin’s images of Native
Part 3, Ritual, Iconography, and Ideology, consists in 4
eclectic articles and suggests a variety of techniques and tacts
for ethnohistorical analysis. Larissa Thomas, research
archaeologist at TRC Garrow in Atlanta, Georgia, provides an
analysis of human iconography from Mississippian
archaeological sites based not on time period or geographical
region but on gender. Stressing that female iconography and
consequently female persons were central to the beliefs, rituals
and political structures of Mississippian communities and that
indeed gender roles and relations can be reconstructed, at least
tentatively, through careful study of such images. Barbara
Brotherton, professor of art history art history at Western
Michigan University, examines a corpus of Tlingit masks
collected and described by George Emmons from 1882 to 1893
to demonstrate shifts in artistic style and aesthetics based on
cultural changes undergone by the Tlingit as well as the talents
and inspirations of specific mask carvers. Paul Robinson,
Principal State Archaeologist at the Rhode Island Historical
Preservation and Heritage Commission, examines the historical
interaction of Native Narragansett and the white population of
Conanicut Island (Jamestown, Rhode Island). Proposing a
archaeology of forgetting, the author chronicles the history of
disputes over disturbed Narragansett burial grounds on the island,
demonstrating that oral and written histories do not always match
and, as importantly, differing communities, Native and white,
both continue to make history in the present and to negotiate
power relations. The final article, also dealing with the
Narragansett, demonstrates how oral tradition in the form of
myth, archaeological evidence, and contemporary Narragansett
belief and behavior can be combined to interpret the
archaeological record, in this instance the secondary burial of
a pipe with a specific individual in a Native cemetery. This
article also emphasizes the need for cooperation between
archaeologists and Native communities.
This collection, though revised and expanded, remains a
collection of conference papers with all their concomitant
strengths and weaknesses. Their essential unity is theoretical
rather than geographical or temporal. The majority of the papers
are short, speculative, and open-ended, suggestive of further
research and ideas rather than offering guaranteed techniques
or definitive conclusions. Few papers offer silver bullet solutions,
but each paper offers appropriately enthusiastic suggestions
for incorporating physical evidence, largely gathered through
archaeological investigation, into an analysis that will ultimately
expand our knowledge of the past. The articles are carefully
and appropriately illustrated and contextualized through maps,
line drawings and black and white photographic reproductions.
Each piece is carefully researched and annotated with expansive
bibliographical references for further research and the editors
provide a concluding bibliography as well as a useful index.
This work would serve admirably as a text for courses in
ethnohistory as well as archaeology when it appears in a less
costly paper version.
The Archaeometallurgy of the Asian Old World, edited by
Vincent C. Pigott. Philadelphia University Museum, 1999.
University Museum Monograph 16/MASCA Research Papers
in Science and Archaeology 16. 207 pages; ISBN 0-92417134-0.
Reviewed by David Killick, Department of Anthropology,
University of Arizona, Tucson, Arizona, USA
This volume contains seven review articles on the origins
and spread of metallurgy in the southern half of the Asian Old
World – a region extending from the eastern Mediterranean
to China. Six of the seven articles were originally presented in
1988 at a joint American/Soviet symposium in the Soviet Union.
The proceedings were never published, though a summary
article appeared in Russian in 1989, and is appended in
translation to this volume.
Six papers from the conference are presented here, most
updated in 1996 or 1998, while a seventh was commissioned
for this volume. The sequence of chapters follows geography
rather than chronology, moving from west to east. James Muhly
leads off with a brief review of the origins of copper and bronze
in the Eastern Mediterranean and Cyprus, but neglects to
provide a map; readers unfamiliar with the eastern
Mediterranean will need to supply their own to follow the
argument. The most interesting revelation here is the precocious
appearance of tin bronze in the northern Aegean in the third
millennium (Early Bronze Age, EB). Muhly makes a strong
argument for a trade in tin along the Black Sea, with Troy as
the main entrepôt for the tin trade to the Aegean. The ultimate
sources of tin for the EB in the Aegean and Near East are still
unknown; Muhly favors those of Afghanistan, Central Asia or
Pakistan, none of which have seen even basic
archaeometallurgical survey.
Jane Waldbaum provides a welcome update to her muchcited corpus of the earliest finds of iron in the Near East
(Waldbaum 1980). About 150 pieces of iron have been identified
(or misidentified) from contexts dated between ca. 5000 and
ca. 1200 BC. About one third of these have been subjected to
chemical or metallographic analysis, which reveal the presence
of both meteoritic and smelted iron. Some of the latter is
certainly a by-product of the smelting of copper, supporting the
current consensus in archaeometallurgy that iron smelting
developed out of copper smelting technology through the
mastery of more reducing atmospheres. Iron remains much
rarer than bronze throughout the Early Iron Age (ca. 1200900 BC). The Hittites, Dorians and Philistines have been
claimed to have had special roles in the dissemination of iron
working, but Waldbaum dismisses each in turn. Nor is she much
impressed by the theory that a shortage of tin, brought about
Winter 2000
SAS Bulletin
by the collapse of civilizations after 1200 BC, forced the adoption
of iron. She points instead to metallographic evidence for slowly
increasing ability after 1200 BC to produce steel and to harden
it. As she recognizes, confirmation of this view would require
much more metallographic evidence than is yet available.
Tamara Stech discusses early metallurgy in Anatolia and
Mesopotamia. The one hundred artifacts of hammered native
copper in Neolithic Cayonu (ca. 7250-6750 BC) remain an
isolated anomaly, and few metal finds are reported from
Anatolia and Mesopotamia until the late fourth millennium, when
the first evidence of smelted copper, arsenical copper and even
tin bronzes occurs. Tin bronze, though present, was a minor
fraction of the analyzed artifacts in third millennium
Mesopotamia except in the royal graves at Ur and Kish.
Contemporary sites in Anatolia have very variable proportions
of bronze. As noted above, tin bronzes are well represented at
Troy and in the Aegean at this time. Bronze is rare in western
and eastern Anatolia, but occurs at moderate frequency in
central Anatolia. These patterns strongly suggest more than
one supply route for tin. It is striking that bronzes are more
common in central Anatolia in the EBA than in the MBA.
Could this reflect use of tin from the EBA mine at Kestel in
the Taurus Mountains? Whole forests have been felled, and
countless small furry animals left homeless, to manufacture
the paper consumed in the debate over Kestel. Muhly, the chief
critic of claims for EBA tin mining in the Taurus, reiterates his
opposition here (p. 20), but recent evidence (Yener and Vandiver,
1993) has convinced most others that some tin was produced
here in the EBA.
The early metallurgy of the Iranian Plateau is incisively
reviewed by Vince Pigott. Among the many important insights
in his chapter is a caution against the widely-accepted view
that present Oman was the dominant source of copper for
Mesopotamia in the later fourth millennium. Not so fast, says
Pigott. While the superb work of German archaeometallurgists
has established both the large scale of Bronze Age copper
mining in Oman and the similarity of the unusual trace element
suite in both Omani and Mesopotamian copper, Pigott notes
that the under-researched Iranian mining district of Anarak
has very similar ores. Future scholars will have to consider the
relative contribution of these two sources of supply. Equally
important is his discussion of the relative rarity of bronze on
the Iranian plateau during the Bronze Age (ca. 3200-1350 BC).
During this time bronze become the dominant alloy in
Mesopotamia, and it is widely assumed that the constituent tin
- together with the gold and lapis lazuli that are so prominent in
Sumerian and other Mesopotamian sites – came from
Afghanistan. If so, most of it bypassed, or passed through the
Iranian Plateau, on which arsenical copper remained the
dominant copper alloy until the Iron Age.
The chapter by Jonathan Kenoyer and Heather Miller on
metals in the Indus Valley sequence was invited to fill a major
gap in coverage at the original conference. They make a valiant,
if much too wordy, attempt to make sense of the available
archaeological and archaeometric data. Unfortunately the latter
consist mostly of old wet-chemical analyses of very poor quality.
From the low totals obtained most of the metals were wholly
or partly corroded, and/or could not be fully dissolved. These
page 29
analyses cannot be considered representative of the original
compositions. Metallography has barely begun to be applied in
this region. These drawbacks make it premature to attempt
systematic comparison of the Indus Tradition sequence of
copper alloys (5000-1300 BC) with those of Iran and
The chronology of the earliest iron in South Asia is reviewed
by Gregory Possehl and Praveena Gullapalli. Their chapter is
a broad-brush survey of the chronology of the early iron-using
cultures, based in large part upon an appended list of 130
radiocarbon dates (presented only as calibrated one-sigma
ranges) and four thermoluminescence dates. They conclude
that there seems to be “a contemporaneity in the appearance
of iron in the various parts of the subcontinent” (p.158) around
1000 cal BC, but I fail to see how this conclusion follows from
the data that they present. The radiocarbon dates for each of
the regional sequences discussed vary so widely that it is
difficult to see any consistent pattern. A more focussed critical
examination of key assemblages (like those of Muhly,
Waldbaum and Pigott, above) would have been more useful,
but Possehl and Gullapalli undertake this only for eight supposed
occurrences of iron in Bronze Age contexts. The most intriguing
of these are several bimetallic (bronze and iron) artifacts from
Mundigak, Afghanistan, said to date between 2600 and 2100
BC, but it is not known whether the iron was meteoritic or
smelted. Most of the remaining instances are finds of iron
minerals rather than iron metal. The concluding section, on
technical studies of ancient iron and ironworking, fails to cite
much of the more recent work on the subject by Indian scholars.
The final chapter, by Bennet Bronson, concerns the
transition to iron in China during the first millennium BC. This
paper (essentially as written in 1988) has suffered from the
delay in publication, because in the interim Donald Wagner
published his magnum opus on the same subject (Wagner
1993). Bronson’s chapter can however be highly recommended
to those unwilling to tackle the 573 pages of Wagner’s book.
(It should be noted that the great majority of the studies cited
by Wagner and Bronson are in Chinese, and thus previously
unknown to most Western scholars).
The question of when iron was first smelted in China
remains uncertain, as does the question of diffusion versus
independent invention. Bronson and Wagner concur that it was
not until the middle of the Warring States period (475-221 BC)
that the use of iron became widespread. Analyzed artifacts of
this period include cast iron, steel and wrought iron. As is well
known, cast iron was a Chinese innovation and was produced
on an astonishing scale as early as the Han Dynasty (206 BC
– 220 AD), with iron production becoming a state monopoly in
117 BC. Bronson provides an excellent short summary of the
techniques of early Chinese ironworkers, which are of a variety
and productivity unknown in Europe until the second millennium
In conclusion, most of the chapters in this volume are
exemplary, and much-needed, reviews; the authors have done
great service to their colleagues. It is odd that there is no review
of early metallurgy in South East Asia, given that Pigott himself
is the leading authority on this topic, but this is a minor quibble.
As reviews are supposed to do, these call attention to areas in
page 30
SAS Bulletin
urgent need of further research. The most pressing of these is
the question of the tin trade. Clearly the distribution of bronze
and tin provides a unique window onto interaction between
ancient Near Eastern societies. This has been a key issue in
Near Eastern archaeology for the past thirty years, and is
regrettable that intense archaeometric efforts to find ways to
“fingerprint” tin (none of which are mentioned in this volume)
have thus far been unsuccessful. It appears that answers will
have to come from filling in the archaeological blanks on the
map. Given that critical regions (Afghanistan, Iran) are unlikely
to be accessible in the near future, it could be another thirty
years before this question is settled.
Waldbaum, J.C. (1980). The first archaeological appearance
of iron. In T. A. Wertime and J. D. Muhly, eds. The Coming
of the Age of Iron, pp. 69-98. New Haven: Yale University
Wagner, D. (1993). Iron & Steel in Ancient China. Leiden:
E.J. Brill.
Yener, K.A. and P. B. Vandiver (1993). Tin Processing at
Göltepe, an Early Bronze Age Site in Anatolia. American
Journal of Archaeology 97:207-238.
Antropologia y Tecnica. Nueva Época. Luis Barba Pingarrón,
editor. 2000. ISSN 0186-9787. 94 pp.
This new issue includes 10 articles, all in English, and is
devoted to archaeometry. The journal will continue to emphasize
interdisciplinary studies of anthropology in Mexico, Latin
American countries and Spain, with articles in English or Spanish
with abstracts in both languages. Correspondence: Instituto de
Investigaciones Antropológicas de la UNAM, Departamento
de Publicaciones. Circuito exterior s/n, Cd. Universitaria, 04510,
México, D.F. tel 5622 9654/9531; fax 5622 9651; 5665 2959;
email: barba; libreria
climate change, central tasks facing the coastal and estuarine
manager are to predict and manage change, undertaken against
a background of constantly moving goalposts. There is an urgent
need for a much better framework of background
environmental data and more effective and reliable
management tools, founded on sound scientific understanding,
which can provide necessary guidance and the basis for policy
formulation. Although these needs have been recognized, and
some progress has been made in the past few years, of which
this volume is an example, an adequate suite of such tools and
frameworks for environmental monitoring is still some way off.
The 30 papers included in this volume reflects the wide
range of research currently being undertaken in coastal and
estuarine environments, but underlines the fact that there are
still significant gaps in understanding and major needs for further
research which crosses traditional disciplinary boundaries. This
volume brings together the results of recent research of
sedimentologists, geomorphologists, archaeologists, engineers
and others, expounding their methods and concerns, and
identifying further areas where future joint work might be
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change. In a world of increasingly rapid technological and
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* = new listings; + = new information for previous listings
Feb. 5-9. Australasian Archaeometry Conference.Auckland,
New Zealand.Peter Sheppard, Dept. of Anthropology,
University of Auckland, Private Bas 92019, Auckland, New
Zealand; tel: 64-9-373-7599 x8572; email [email protected]; web:
* March 29-30. Archaeometry in Europe in the Third
Millennium. Rome, Palazzina dell’Auditorio, Via della
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Lincei, Centro Linceo Beniamino Segre, and the
Dipartimento di Energetica, Università di Roma “La
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* April 8-12. European Union of Geosciences meeting,
Strasbourg. Includes sessions on Geomorphology and the
Quaternary. Full details of all these sessions and the
procedure for abstract submission are given on the EUG
April 18-22. 66th Annual Meeting of Society for American
Archaeology.New Orleans, Louisiana, USA.SAA
headquarters, 900 Second St. NE #12, Washington DC
20002, USA; tel: 202-789-8200; fax: 202-789-0284; email:
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April 25-29. CAA2001. Computer Applications in Archaeology.
Visby, Gotland, Sweden. Organizer: Professor Göran
Burenhult, Gotland University College, Cramérgatan 3, 621
57 Visby, Sweden; email: [email protected] All registration
information, including call for papers form and mailing list,
are available at the CAA homepage:
* May 19. Historical Metallurgy Society Ltd. Annual General
Meeting and Spring Meeting. London & Scandinavian
Metallurgical Co. Limited, Fullerton Road, Rotherham, South
Yorks, S60 1 DL. Contact Eddie Birch, 1 Fields End,
Oxspring, Sheffield, S36 8WH. tel 01226 370331; fax 01709
830391; email: [email protected]
June 24-28. Earth System Processes: Geological Society of
America and Geological Society of London.Edinburgh,
Scotland.Ian Dalziel, University of Texas at Austin.Web:
* Aug. 1-3. The State of the Art in Phytolith and Starch
Research in the Australian-Pacific-Asian Regions, Canberra,
Australia. Contributions from all areas of phytolith and/or
starch research are sought for oral or poster presentations.
Web: (follow the links). Organisers:
Lynley Wallis, Dept. of Archaeology and Natural History,
Research School of Pacific and Asian Studies, The Australian
National University, Canberra ACT 0200 Australia. email:
car.conference; Doreen Bowdery (ANU);
email: [email protected]; Carol Lentfer (SCU),
email: [email protected]; Jeff Parr (SCU); email:
[email protected]
Aug. 26-30. 10th Archaeological Chemistry Symposium at the
American Chemical Society meeting.Chicago, Illinois,
USA.Kathyrn A. Jakes, 1787 Neil Avenue, Columbus OH,
USA 43210; tel: 614-292-5518; email: [email protected]
* Aug. 29-Sept. 1. Archaeological Science 2001. University
of Newcastle upon Tyne, UK. Web:
geography/conference/conference.html. Email: [email protected]
* Sept. 2-8. International Union of Pre- and Protohistoric
Sciences, Liege, Belgium.
Sept. 18-22. PAGES PEPIII Conference.Aix-en-Provence,
France.Catherine Sticklye, Environmental Change Research
Centre, Univesity College London, 26 Bedford Way, London,
WC1H 0AP, UK; tel: 44-0-20-7679-5562; fax: 44-0-20-73877565; email: [email protected]; web:
* Sept. 19-23. 7th Annual Meeting of the European Association
of Archaeologists, Esslingen am Neckar, Germany. Forms
and information available on the web:
eaa2001/e-q-q-d.html Program proposals are due May 1,
page 31
2001, with earlier proposals receiving preferential treatment.
For further information: EAA-Tagungsbüro 2001, Marktplatz
16, 73728 Esslingen am neckar, Germany. fax 711-3512.2912;
email [email protected]
+ October 3-6, 2001. 6 th European Meeting on Ancient
Ceramics (EMAC ‘01). Ceramic in the Society. Organized
by M. Maggetti and V. Serneels, Institute of Mineralogy
and Petrography, University of Fribourg, Switzerland. tel 41
26 3008920 / 31; fax 41 26 3009765; email:
[email protected]; web:
emac01. Abstracts are due May 1, 2001. Special sessions
cover topics including: social interactions and constraints in
the fields of production and consumption; history of
development of ceramic technology and driving forces for
inovation; ceramic materials used in pyrotechnologies
(metallurgy, glassmaking, etc.); and scientific methods for
the determination of the function of ceramics (residue
analysis, etc.).
late Sept. A Fiftieth Anniversary Symposium on Scientific
Research in the Field of Asian Art. Forbes Symposium 2001,
DCSR, Freer Gallery of Art/Arthur M. Sackler Gallery,
Smithsonian Institution, Washington, DC 20560; email
[email protected]
* Nov. 14-17. New Discoveries from Materials Science in the
Archaeology of the Near East. Symposium at the Annual
Meeting of the American Schools of Oriental Research
(ASOR), Boulder, Colorado. Session Chair: Elizabeth S.
Friedman, University of Chicago. email abstracts by April 1
to: [email protected] Forms available at ASOR
registration website:
* Nov. 26-30. Materials Issues in Art and Archaeology VI.
Fall 2001 Meeting of the Materials Research Society, Nov.
26-30th, Boston, MA, USA. Submit abstracts and register
at by June 19th, 2001.
Organizers: Pamela B. Vandiver, Martha Goodway, Jennifer
Mass & James Druzik. For more info: P.B. Vandiver,
Smithsonian Center for Materials Research and Education,
4210 Silver Hill Rd., Suitland, MD 20746, USA;email:
[email protected]; tel (301) 238-3700 x-162; fax (301)
* April 22-26. 33rd International Symposium on Archaeometry,
Amsterdam. E.A.K. Kars, Rikjsdienst voor het,
Oudheidkundig, Bodemonderzoek, PO Box 1600, 3800 BP
Amersfoort, the Netherlands. Tel 31 33 422 76 06; fax 31
33 422 77 99; email: [email protected]; web:
www.archaeometry. Deadline for abstracts is
November 1, 2001.
Aug. 14-21. 17th World Congress of Soil Science, Bangkok
Thailand.Arid and Semi-Arid Soils: Records of Past
Climates, Carbon Sequestration, Genesis and
Management.Convenor: Brenda J. Buck; University of
Nevada Las Vegas, Department of Geoscience, 4505
Maryland Parkway, Las Vegas NV 89154; tel 702-895-1694;
email [email protected]; web: http://www.17wcss.
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SAS Bulletin
Society for Archaeological Sciences
SAS Bulletin Staff
Editor: Robert H. Tykot, Department of Anthropology, University of
South Florida, 4202 East Fowler Avenue, Tampa, Florida 33620-8100, USA;
tel 813-974-7279; fax 813-974-2668; e-mail [email protected]
Associate Editor, Archaeological Ceramics: Charles C. Kolb, National
Endowment for the Humanities, Division of Preservation and Access, Room
411, 1100 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW, Washington, DC 20506, USA; tel
202-606-8250; fax 202-606-8639; e-mail [email protected]
Associate Editor, Archaeological Chemistry: Michael Richards,
Department of Archaeological Sciences, University of Bradford, UK. email:
M.P. [email protected]; tel (01274) 235532; fax (01274) 235190
Associate Editor, Archaeometallurgy: Martha Goodway, Smithsonian
Center for Materials Research and Education (SCMRE), 4210 Silver Hill Road,
Suitland, MD 20746-2863 USA; tel 301-238-3700 x164; fax 301-238-3709; email [email protected]
Associate Editors, Bioarchaeology: David B. Landon, Center for Cultural
and Environmental History, Anthropology Department, University of
Massachusetts-Boston, Boston, MA 02125 USA; email [email protected]
Associate Editor, Biomolecular Archaeology: Richard P. Evershed,
Organic Geochemistry Unit, School of Chemistry, University of Bristol,
Cantock’s Close, Bristol BS8 1TS, UK; tel 44-117-9287671; fax 44-1179251295; e-mail [email protected]
Associate Editor, Book Reviews: Michael D. Glascock, Missouri University
Research Reactor, 223 Research Reactor Center, University of Missouri,
Columbia, MO 65211, USA; tel 573-882-5270; fax 573-882-6360; e-mail
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Associate Editors, Dating: Donna L. Kirner, UCR Radiocarbon Laboratory,
Department of Anthropology, University of California-Riverside, Riverside, CA,
92521-0418 USA; tel 909-787-6346; fax 909-787-5409; e-mail
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University, 1280 Main Street West, Hamilton, ON, Canada L8S 4M1; tel 905525-9140 x24178; fax 905-522-3141; e-mail [email protected]
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Department, Texas A&M University, College Station, TX 77843-4352, USA;
tel 409-845-5246; fax 409-845-4070; e-mail [email protected]
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USA; tel 218-726-7957; fax 218-726-6979; e-mail [email protected]
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SAS Administration
General Secretary: R. E. Taylor, Radiocarbon Laboratory, Department of
Anthropology, University of California-Riverside, Riverside, CA 92521, USA;
tel 909-787-5521; dept. tel 909-787-5524; fax 909-787-5409; e-mail
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SAS Executive Officers 1999-2001
President: Christine Prior, Rafter Radiocarbon Laboratory, Institute of
Geological & Nuclear Sciences, 30 Gracefield Road, PO Box 31-312, Lower
Hutt, New Zealand; tel 64-4-570-4644; fax 64-4-570-4657; email
[email protected]
Vice President/President-elect: Arleyn W. Simon, Archaeological Research
Institute, Department of Anthropology, Arizona State University, Tempe, AZ
85287-2402, USA; tel 602-965-9231, 6957(direct); fax 602-965-7671; e-mail
[email protected]
Past President: Rob Sternberg, Department of Geosciences, Franklin
and Marshall College, Lancaster, PA 17604-3003, USA; tel 717-291-4134; dept.
tel 717-291-4133; fax 717-291-4186; e-mail [email protected]
Secretary/Treasurer: Felicia R. Beardsley, Department of Anthropology,
Univ. of California-Riverside, Riverside, CA 92521-0418, tel 909- 787-5524;
fax 909-787-5409; e-mail [email protected]
Internet and the World Wide Web: James Burton, Department of
Anthropology, University of Wisconsin, Madison, Wisconsin 53706-1393, USA;
tel 608-262-4505; fax 608-265-4216; e-mail [email protected]
Vice President for Intersociety Relations & SAS Editor for Archaeometry:
Steven Shackley, Phoebe Hearst Museum of Anthropology, 103 Kroeber Hall,
University of California-Berkeley, Berkeley, CA 94720-3712, USA; tel 510643-1193, x-3; fax 510-642-6271; e-mail [email protected]
Vice President for Membership Development: Arleyn W. Simon,
Archaeological Research Institute, Department of Anthropology, Arizona State
University, Tempe, AZ 85287-2402, USA; tel 602-965-9231, 6957(direct); fax
602-965-7671; e-mail [email protected]
Editor, Archaeometry: Michael Tite, Research Laboratory for Archaeology
and the History of Art, Oxford University, 6 Keble Road, Oxford OX1 3QJ,
UK; tel 44-(0)1865-515211; fax 44-(0)1865-273932; email Michael.Tite
Editor, Journal of Archaeological Science: Richard Klein, Department of
Anthropology, Stanford University, Stanford, CA 94305-2145, USA; e-mail
[email protected]
Published quarterly by the Society for Archaeological Sciences
Distributed to subscribers: $20/year regular membership; $15.00 student; $30.00
institutional; $300 lifetime. Individuals add $95.00/year for Journal of
Archaeological Science; $30/year for Archaeometry (starting 2001). Payable
with major credit cards (+7%): provide card number and expiration date. ISSN
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