The ISAS Ceramics Section is responsible for the analysis and interpretation of Native American ceramic assemblages from archaeological sites in Illinois, primarily those recovered by surveys done in coordination with IDOT. Analysis involves identifying ware types, conducting detailed attribute analysis on vessels and sherds (i.e., form, tempering agents, surface treatments, decorative treatments), and preparing reports.
Ceramic vessels are found on many sites occupied in the last 3,000 years and archaeologists rely on ceramic evidence for identifying the cultural affiliations between these sites. In this way, the ceramic analysts also help to provide valuable interpretive information for the whole team collaborating to analyze and interpret each site in its entirety.
Dr. Duane Esarey