Anasazi

The Anasazi Culture evolved on the plateau of northeastern Arizona, northwestern New Mexico, southeastern Utah and southwestern Colorado.

Characteristics

The Anasazi seem to have developed from an earlier culture, the Oshara, an archaic culture of small nomadic bands who lived in the more mountainous parts of the territory. The introduction of pottery, probably from the south, signals the beginnings of the culture we call Anasazi. The people grew corn and beans, and were also hunters and gatherers. Villages consisted of small pithouse or pueblo groupings, and usually had a large ceremonial structure known as a kiva. A variety of burial practices were used, most often bodies were flexed in shallow pit-graves in the refuse heaps surrounding the villages.

House Types

The Anasazi, like the Mogollon lived in pithouses arranged in groups around a larger ceremonial room called a kiva. The kiva may have served some religious function, but more likely its initial function was as a council chamber, where the elders of a settlement could discuss issues relevant to their survival. The pithouses were constructed of jacal, a type of wattle-and-daub construction. In some areas, surface structures were made of masonry, then surrounded by additional surface dwellings of wattle-and -daub. These groupings would lead ultimately to the modern pueblo.

Pottery

Anasazi pottery tends to be constructed of white or gray clay, and is constructed using the coiling-and-scraping technique. Early on, these were often decorated with black geometric designs, but later on polychrome types are developed, some of which would be ancestral to historic Hopi pottery.

Tusayan Gray Ware
Tusayan White Ware
Little Colorado White Ware
Mesa Verde White Ware
Pajarito Gray Ware
Cibola White Ware
White Mountain Red Ware
San Juan Orange Ware
Tsegi Orange Ware
Jeddito Yellow Ware
Rio Grande Ware


Tusayan Gray Ware

This ware is found in the northern half of Arizona.

Material: The clay is gray to buff 
Construction: Coiled-and-scraped
Paint: Carbon-based in the west, iron-based in the east 
Firing: Reducing atmosphere
Forms: Bowls and globular jars

Tsegi Series

Lino Gray — 500 - 800
One of the earliest widespread pottery types, this  Tusayan Gray Ware type served as a primary utility ware throughout Basketmaker III and Early Pueblo I.

Basketmaker III/Early Pueblo I

Lino Fugitive Red — 550 - 800
In this variety of Lino Gray, the earliest attempts at providing vessels with a red slip were less than successful. It soon abraded or washed away, leaving only traces.

Basketmaker III/Early Pueblo I

Lino Black-on-Gray — 550 - 850
This was one of the first painted whitewares. The painted decoration on this Tusayan White Ware type resembles those found on baskets.

Basketmaker III/Early Pueblo I

Kana-a Gray — 865 - 1050
Kana-a Gray is characterized by neckbanding, a series of three to six corrugations encircling the neck of jars. 

Late Pueblo I/ Early Pueblo II

Rio Grande Series

Rosa Black-on-White — 1000 - 1130
One of the earliest widespread pottery types, this  Tusayan Gray Ware type served as a primary utility ware throughout Basketmaker III and Early Pueblo I.

Late Pueblo II


Tusayan White Ware

This ware is found in the northeast quarter of Arizona.

Material: The clay is medium to light gray 
Construction: Coiled-and-scraped
Paint: Organic-based on polished unslipped or on white slip 
Firing: Neutral to reducing atmosphere
Forms: Bowls, jars, canteens, scoops, seed jars, pitchers, effigies, ladles

Kana-a Black-on-White — 825 - 1000
Further sophistication in decoration and organic paint characterize this type.

Late Pueblo I

Black Mesa Black-on-White — 1000 - 1100
This was the parallel to Red Mesa in the Tusayan White Ware tradition. Painted decoration is very similar, but organic paint was employed.

Pueblo II

Sosi Black-on-White — 1070 - 1180
Similar to Flagstaff Black-on-White in design, patterns are usually bolder and larger in this Tusayan White Ware type. Interlocking barbed lines are typical of the style.

Late Pueblo II/Early Pueblo III

Dogoszhi Black-on-White — 1040 - 1220
This was one of several similar Tusayan White Ware types produced in  the Chaco Canyon area characterized by wide bands of hatching without solid elements.

Late Pueblo II/Early Pueblo III

Flagstaff Black-on-White — 1150 - 1220
Designs tend to be smaller and busier than those of Sosi Black-on-White, many of the motifs multiplied throughout in this Tusayan White Ware type.

Early Pueblo III

Tusayan Black-on-White — 1200 - 1300
This type is characterized by banded decoration composed of large solids separated by parallel lines. Dotted triangles are reminiscent of Black Mesa Black-on-White.

Late Pueblo III

Kayenta Black-on-White — 1200 - 1300
Kayenta Black-on-White is one of the finest wares produced in the Tusayan area. Designs are banded and negative-painted.

Late Pueblo III


Little Colorado White Ware

This ware is found in the narrow strip flanking the Little Colorado River as it runs through northern Arizona.

Material: The clay is generally dark, and may refire to red
Construction: Coiled-and-scraped
Paint: Organic, on kaolinite slip 
Firing: Neutral to reducing atmosphere
Forms: Bowls and jars

Holbrook Black-on-White — 1050 - 1150
Bold designs and broad lines distinguish this Little Colorade White Ware type, similar to Black Mesa Black-on-White, but differing in paste and temper.

Late Pueblo II/Early Pueblo III

Walnut B Black-on-White — 1200 - 1250
Interlocking, hooked scrolls, negative painting and banded designs separated by parallel lines signal the B variety of this Little Colorado White Ware type.

Early Pueblo III

Leupp Black-on-White — 1200 - 1250
Large fields of small, closely-spaced elements, particularly dotted squares, exemplify this relatively rare Little Colorado White Ware type.

Pueblo III


Mesa Verde White Ware

This ware is found primarily in the southwest corner of Colorado in the area around Mesa Verde.

Material: The clay is gray to white
Construction: Coiled-and-scraped
Paint: Organic on pearly gray-white slip 
Firing: Reducing atmosphere
Forms: Bowls, jars, ladles, scoops and, particularly, mugs

McElmo Black-on-White — 1100 - 1200
The only Cibola White Ware type with organic paint, designs tend to be linear and solid, often painted in the Flagstaff Style.

Early Pueblo III

Mesa Verde Black-on-White — 1200 - 1300
The organic paints used in the Mesa Verde tradition and the pearly white slips make this type quite distinctive.

Late Pueblo III


Pajarito Gray Ware

This ware is found in the northern Rio Grande area, around Santa Fe and in the Jemez Mountains.

Material: The clay is gray to brown 
Construction: Coiled-and-scraped
Paint: Mineral-based on white slip 
Firing: Reducing atmosphere
Forms: Bowls and jars

Santa Fe Black-on-White — 1200 - 1300
Santa Fe Black-on-White is found in the Upper Rio Grande area. It is derived from earlier types, Gallina and Kwahe's Black-on-White, but has a better slip and is more carefully smoothed.

Late Pueblo III


Cibola White Ware

The Cibola White Wares are perhaps the most difficult to properly identify because they are widespread and vary only subtly in painted decoration. Furthermore, the "Cibola" range covers both Anasazi and Mogollon areas, being found in eastern Arizona and western New Mexico. Series distinctions allow us to separate types which are primarily Anasazi from those which are Mogollon. The Puerco-Chaco Series is the primary Anasazi sequence, to which we add the San Juan Series.

Material: The clay is white to dark gray 
Construction: Coiled-and-scraped
Paint: Mineral-based on white slip 
Firing: Reducing atmosphere
Forms: Bowls, jars, effigies, ladles, scoops, seed jars and canteens

Puerco-Chaco Series

La Plata Black-on-White — 550 - 725
La Plata Black-on-White is the earliest of the painted Cibola White Wares.

Basketmaker III

White Mound Black-on-White — 700 - 900
This Cibola White Ware type was one of the first to demonstrate a more sophisticated organization in painted decoration.

Pueblo I

Kiatuthlanna Black-on-White — 850 - 950
Higher sophistication in decoration and mineral paint make this the counterpart to Kana-a for the Cibola White Ware tradition.

Late Pueblo I/Early Pueblo II

Red Mesa Black-on-White — 900 - 1050
This was the dominant black-on-white type in the Cibola White Ware tradition during this period. Designs continue to be more elaborate, executed in mineral paint.

Early Pueblo II

Gallup Black-on-White — 1030 - 1125
This Cibola White Ware type has designs similar to those found in the Chaco area, but they include occasional solid elements and were executed in mineral paint.

Late Pueblo II

Chaco Black-on-White — 1075 - 1150
This type was made in the Chaco Canyon area during the peak of Chacoan supremacy. Most designs consist of interlocking hatched bands.

Late Pueblo II

Puerco Black-on-White — 1030 - 1150
The designs on this Cibola White Ware type consist of linear and negative-painted solid elements, occasional set off by panels of hatching.

Late Pueblo II/Early Pueblo III

Escavada Black-on-White — 1000 - 1130
Escavada Black-on-White usually carries bold motifs executed in broad lines and these decorations are generally based on triangles.

Late Pueblo II/Early Pueblo III

San Juan Series

Mancos Black-on-White — 900 - 1050
Mancos Black-on-White is found in the Mesa Verde area, east of Mesa Verde National Park. Mancos patterns tend to consist of wide bands of hatched elements as opposed to the bolder  contemporary McElmo patterns.

Early Pueblo II


White Mountain Red Ware

Wingate Black-on-Red — 1050 - 1200
Designs for this White Mountain Red Ware type consist primarily of interlocking solid and hatched elements, executed in organic paint on a dark red slip.

Late Pueblo II/Early Pueblo III

Puerco Black-on-Red — 1030 - 1150
Puerco Black-on-Red has interlocking frets, dotted triangles, broad lines, stripes, stepped parallel lines and interlocking scroll triangles may be arranged in continuous bands around the vessel.

Late Pueblo II/Early Pueblo III

Showlow Black-on-Red — 1030 - 1200
Showlow Black-on-Red has fairly distinct decoration, consisting primarily of bold-line interlocking key motifs. .

Late Pueblo II/Early Pueblo III

 

Wingate Polychrome — 1125 - 1225
Wingate Polychrome is Wingate Black-on-Red with white and red designs on the exterior. Early examples are Houck variety, later version Querino variety.

Early Pueblo III

St Johns Black-on-Red — 1150 - 1300
This type is the redware equivalent of Tularosa Black-on-white, fired in an oxidizing atmosphere to achieve a red ground.

Early Pueblo III/Late Pueblo III

St Johns Polychrome — 1150 - 1300
This type is the same as St Johns Black-on-Red, but the exteriors of bowls have added decoration executed in white paint.

Early Pueblo III/Late Pueblo III

St Johns Glaze Polychrome — 1200 - 1300
This type is the result of the introduction of glaze paints, which provided richer, glossier colors, late in the history of St Johns Polychrome.

Late Pueblo III

 


San Juan Orange Ware

This ware is found in the southeast corner of Utah, along the San Juan Basin.

Material: The clay is red to brown
Construction: Coiled-and-scraped
Paint: Mineral-based 
Firing: Oxidizing atmosphere
Forms: Bowls and jars

La Plata Black-on-Orange — 750 - 900
La Plata Black-on-Orange is the earliest black-on-red type in the northern plateau area. Vessels were slipped and were fired in an oxidizing atmosphere.

Early Pueblo I/Late Pueblo I

Abajo Red-on-Orange — 700 - 900
An unusual Tsegi Orange Ware type found in southeastern Utah, this pottery was perhaps the earliest Anasazi redware, and may have been inspired by Mogollon types.

Early Pueblo I/Late Pueblo I


Tsegi Orange Ware

This ware is found in the northernmost part of Arizona, north of Flagstaff.

Material: The clay is yellow to orange 
Construction: Coiled-and-scraped
Paint: Manganese-based on bright red slip 
Firing: Oxidizing atmosphere
Forms: Bowls

Black Mesa Series

Tusayan Black-on-Red — 1000 - 1300
This was one of the earliest Tsegi Orange Wares in the Tusayan area, and also the first to employ designs composed primarily of hatched elements.

Late Pueblo II/Pueblo III

Tusayan B Polychrome — 1100 - 1300
Wide red bands outlined in black are characteristic of this Tsegi Orange Ware type, but while the A variety has solid designs between the bands, the B variety also contains hatching.

Pueblo III

Little Colorado Series

Deadmans Black-on-Red — 800 - 1000
Deadmans Black-on-Red was one of the first black-on-red types in the northern plateau area. The decoration, which generally consisted of coarse lines, wide bands and triangles, was often polished over before firing, blurring it slightly.

Late Pueblo I/Early Pueblo II

Hopi Series

Jeddito Black-on-Orange — 1275 - 1400
Jeddito Black-on-Orange was the first of a long line of Hopi yellow wares. It differs from later Jeddito Black-on-Yellow in both the more formal geometric designs and darker paste color.

Pueblo IV


Jeddito Yellow Ware

This distinctive ware is fairly easy to recognize, and is considered the ancestor of historic Hopi wares.

Material: The clay is hard, fine and yellow.
Construction: Coiled-and-scraped
Paint: Manganese-based, fires brown to black 
Firing: Oxidizing atmosphere
Forms: Bowls and jars

Jeddito Black-on-Yellow — 1300 - 1625
A precursor to the historic Hopi types, the Jeddito Yellow Ware type has asymmetrical patterns and is painted on both interior and exterior.

Pueblo IV

Jeddito Spattered — 1300 - 1625
The interiors of vessels of this Jeddito Yellow Ware type are painted by spattering pigment onto the surface.

Pueblo IV

Bidahochi Polychrome — 1320 - 1400
This Jeddito Yellow Ware type is characterized by white outlining around bold designs emphasizing linear and solid elements.

Pueblo IV


Rio Grande Glaze Ware Sequence

This ware is found in the Middle Rio Grande area, around Albuquerque and to the south.

Material: The clay is gray to brown
Construction: Coiled-and-scraped
Paint: Glaze paint
Firing: Reducing atmosphere
Forms: Bowls

Espinoso Glaze Polychrome — 1425 - 1490

Espinoso Glaze Polychrome was one of the glaze polychromes that developed in the Middle Rio Grande. Designs on this type are composed of red bands outlined in black over a yellow slipped ground.

Pueblo IV