Key’ howesto

Key’ howesto

You make it

There are many ways to make clay vessels. For example, some potters use the coil method to make vessels. In this method, potters stack long rolls of clay and then smooth them together. 

Wyandot potter Richard Zane Smith noticed several characteristics of Fort Ancient pots that suggest people used other methods. He believes ancient potters used a tool to stretch and shape the clay. 

 “If you look at the cross section of these old pots, you do not see the join where the coils where smoothed together. The cord marks are not for gripping or to add decorative texture, they are likely part of the creation process. If you use what archaeologists refer to as a ‘hairpin’ as a spindle, and wrap fiber cordage around it, the vessel can be stretched and formed fairly quickly.” 

Fun Fact: Fort Ancient style pots are so thin you can cook food over a small twig fire or over hot coals.