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Chronometric Hygiene of Radiocarbon Databases for Early Durable Cooking Vessel Technologies in Northeastern North America

  • Karine Taché (a1) and John P. Hart (a2)

Abstract

The earliest widespread pottery in northeastern North America is known as Vinette 1, a designation made by Ritchie and MacNeish (1949) over 60 years ago. While variation exists within this type (Taché 2005), external and internal cordmarked surfaces, thick walls, and large crushed-rock temper generally characterize this pottery. The history of this pottery, including its inception, geographical spread, temporal overlap with steatite vessels, and eventual replacement by other pottery technologies, is far from clear. In this article, we examine the existing database of radiocarbon assays associated with Vinette 1 pottery and steatite vessels, perform a chronometrie hygiene of those age estimates, and introduce 21 new AMS assays on charred cooking residues adhering to Vinette 1 sherd interiors. The results suggest a much more temporally restricted history for Vinette 1 pottery technology and a long period of coexistence with steatite vessels. However, the small number of reliable age estimates available for both technologies prevents a detailed assessment of their respective histories.

Resumen

La cerámica más antigua con distribución extendida en el noreste de Norteamérica se conoce como Vinette 1, una denominación proveniente de Ritchie y MacNeish (1949) más de 60 años atrás. Mientras existen variantes dentro este tipo (Taché 2005), esta cerámica generalmente se caracteriza por superficies con impresión cordada (i.e. cordmarked), el espesor de sus paredes, y sus inclusiones compuestas de minerales pulverizados. Las historias de esta cerámica, incluyendo su origen, su propagación geográfica, su coexistencia con vasos de esteatita, y su reemplazo eventual por otras tecnologías cerámicas necesita ser aclarada. En este artículo examinamos las bases de datos existentes de dataciones radiocarbónicas asociadas con cerámica Vinette 1 y vasijas de esteatita, ejecutamos una limpieza cronométrica de estas fechas, y presentemos 21 nuevas fechas AMS provenientes de residuos carbonizados en el interior de fragmentos de cerámica Vinette 1. Los resultados sugieren una historia de la cerámica Vinette 1 mucho más restringida temporalmente de lo que se había considerado hasta ahora, con un amplio periodo de coexistencia con vasijas de esteatita. Sin embargo, el número limitado de dataciones aplicables a ambas tecnologías no permite una apreciación detallada de sus historias respectivas.

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