: This dark gray, hooded ceramic jar has a globular body, rounded shoulders and base, and a narrow neck. The top of the pot is a hand-molded effigy of an animal head. The effigy has a pointed snout and raised bumps to indicate eyes. The opening of the jar is in the back of the animal's head. The surface of the pot is uniformly smooth. Tempering material may be shell, but it is not apparent on the surface.
This piece is from Mississippian Culture. Between about A.D. 700 and 1600, people living in the central Mississippi River valley developed a lifestyle that archaeologists refer to as Mississippian. Mississippian farmers raised the same crops as their Woodland ancestors. However, they relied more and more on corn, squash, and beans. It is believed that the Mississippian people had to move to new sites, perhaps every ten years, as their soil became less fertile. Most Mississippian groups lived on single farms or in small villages, but, because their food supply could support more people, their villages grew in size and density. Some archaeologists believe the Mississippian cultures developed chiefdoms in which certain persons held a great deal of power. In many of the larger towns and regional centers, the Mississippian people built flat-topped pyramid-shaped mounds of earth that served as bases for buildings. Archaeologists believe that these buildings may have been the homes of leaders or places for public rituals. What happened to the Mississippian cultures is not clear, but there was a decline or disruption of their lifestyle beginning in some places as early as A.D. 1350. View on Ohio Memory.
: A4786_000107_1 Subjects
: Pottery, Prehistoric; Effigies; Mississippian culture; Mound-builders; Places
: Hooded animal effigy jar