Master of Arts (MA)
First Committee Member
Number of Pages
Intermountain Brownware, is a late prehistoric ceramic type made by mobile hunter-gatherers that is found throughout southern Nevada, western Utah and northern Arizona. Most hunter-gather groups around the world are not pottery producers. Through interdisciplinary analysis, I examine the physical and morphological characteristics to understand the amount of labor invested in the construction and production of Intermountain Brownware. I then evaluate these results amongst environmental, historical, ethnological, and archaeological data to conclude that Intermountain Brownware possesses lower porosity, and is thinner and stronger than commonly reported. Gas Chromatography-Mass Spectrometry (GC-MS) is performed to empirically characterize food residues remaining in the pores of each sherd. Seed and root residues were predominant in our archaeological samples and meat was not. This study demonstrates that Intermountain Brownware ceramics are of better quality than previously thought, that labor investment was significant, and that these vessels were primarily constructed for cooking seed and root stews.
Analysis; Arizona; Brownware; Functional; Intermountain; Mobility; Nevada; Pottery; Utah
Archaeology; Indians of North America--Study and teaching
University of Nevada, Las Vegas
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Betenson, Britt J, "Pottery and mobility: A functional analysis of Intermountain Brownware" (2004). UNLV Retrospective Theses & Dissertations. 1758.