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Current Research: Organic Residues on Engraved Vessels from Ancestral Caddo Sites in East Texas
Caddo Archeology Journal
In the course of recently documenting ancestral Caddo ceramic vessels from sites dating to Late Caddo period Titus phase contexts (ca. A.D. 1430-1680) in East Texas, specifically on sites in the Big Cypress Creek and Sabine River basins, I have encountered a significant number (ca. 9.6 percent) of more than 1790 engraved fine ware vessels that have an exterior organic residue (Table 1), including carinated bowls, compound bowls, jars, bowls, and even bottles. In some cases, the exterior residue on certain carinated bowls and compound bowls is so thick that the engraved design is obscured and almost completely covered with the organic residue (Figure 1a- c). If engraved fine wares from ancestral Caddo sites were used in daily life for the serving of foods and liquids, how did they accumulate an exterior carbonized residue by the time they were placed in burials as funerary offerings?
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