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Oneota Pottery – Non-local Motif

Oneota pottery This vessel fragment from 2012 excavations in Onalaska, Wisconsin, has a short, strongly outward-flaring rim with fingertip impressions on the lip top. That's not all that makes this pottery sherd interesting, though. The design on the shoulder features (from top to bottom) two horizontal rows of ovoid punctations, a horizontal finger trail, another horizontal row of punctations, another horizontal finger trail, and another horizontal row of punctations. This design is quite unusual for the La Crosse area; however, the vessel’s paste (the clay from which it was made) and the crushed-shell temper added to improve firing both look typical for local pottery. Perhaps the potter who made the vessel was non-local, or had encountered the design elsewhere?