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Archaeology Presentation - Secrets of the North Staffordshire Ceramic Recipes
Thursday, October 2, 2008 - 4:00pm

Jessica Hale (Applied Archaeological Research)

Secrets of the North Staffordshire Ceramic Recipes: Identifying Chemical Variation and Uniformity Using an Archaeometric Approach

Thursday, October 2, 4 o'clock, Cramer 41

This research chemically examined 174 industrial North Staffordshire pottery fragments from an archaeological context, using Instrumental Neutron Activation Analysis (INAA).

In an integrated effort to combine an archaeometric approach with archival research and traditional analysis methods, the purpose of this research was to link industrial pottery manufacturers recipes to their corresponding chemical signatures. In order to associate a ceramic artifact with a paste recipe, it was hypothesized that each company utilized a standardized, yet specialized recipe, resulting in homogenous and distinctive chemical compositions. The findings suggest, that indeed, pottery companies were developing unique paste recipes that could be recognized by their chemical signatures. The results suggest the possibility of implementing an alternative analytical tool in historic ceramic analyses.