Ancestral Pueblo: Southern Colorado Plateau (Anasazi)Eastern (Mountain) AnasaziUpper San JuanUpper San Juan Gray WareRosa Gray

Type Name: Rosa Gray

Period: 700 A.D. - 900 A.D.
Culture: Ancestral Pueblo: Southern Colorado Plateau (Anasazi)
Branch: Eastern (Mountain) Anasazi
Tradition: Upper San Juan
Ware: Upper San Juan Gray Ware

First posted by C. Dean Wilson 2012

Rosa Gray as described here was originally named referred to by Mera (1935) as Rosa Smoothed and described by (Hall 1944). This type refers to distinct plain gray ware pottery mostly produced in the Upper San Juan region during the Rosa phase (Reed and Goff 2007; Wilson 1988). While mostly occurring in contexts dating to the eighth century, Rosa Gray may occur at sites dating from A.D. 700 to 900.

Coil junctures are obliterated over the entire vessel of Rosa Gray, creating a smooth or plain exterior surface that was not polished. Sherds or vessels exhibiting similar paste characteristics may be assigned to gray ware types that are differentiated on the basis of surface texture. These surface treatments are similar to those noted for early gray ware types from adjacent regions. Temper often protrudes through the surface, and surfaces are often rough and pitted. Vessel thickness is variable. Fugitive red pigment application is rare, but it may occur on the exteriors of bowls and ollas. Paste color is usually gray, dark gray, brown, or red. Paste color is usually even throughout the cross section, and carbon cores are rare. Surface color is quite variable and includes gray, dark gray, buff, and white. This contrast in color indicates the use of high iron clays that are fired in a relatively well-controlled neutral atmosphere. Whereas the oxidized colors of Rosa phase sherds are similar to Sambrito Utility sherds, the Rosa phase clays are harder and less silty. Because of the high iron content, gray ware sherds from misfired vessels or sherds exposed to oxidizing conditions may fire to brown or reddish colors, which may lead to their classification as brown wares. Sherds tempered with local sandstone or crushed quartz temper previously described are assigned to local gray ware types, while those containing crushed igneous temper may either be classified as trade wares from the Northern San Juan area. Rosa Gray occurs in a wide variety of vessel forms, including wide-mouth cooking/storage jars, seed jars, ollas, bowls, gourd jars, effigies, dippers, and pitchers. Most forms exhibit a wide range of sizes, and the variability in size and form. Fugitive red coatings are sometimes present on Rosa Gray jars, but their use is normally limited to bowls and ollas.

Hall, Edward T. Jr.
1944 Early Stockaded Settlements in the Gobernador, New Mexico. Columbia Studies in Archaeology and Ethnology Vol. II, Part I, New York.

Mera, H. P.
1935 Ceramic Clues to the Prehistory of North Central New Mexico. Laboratory of Anthropology Technical Series Bulletin No. 8, Santa Fe.

Reed, Lori and Joel Goff
2007 A Field Guide to Upper San Juan Anasazi and Navajo Pottery. Prepared for the NMAC Ceramic Workshop, Farmington District Office,Document on file, Bureau of Land Management, Farmington.

Wilson, C. Dean, and Eric Blinman
1993 Upper San Juan Ceramic Typology. Office of Archaeological Studies Archaeology Notes 80, Santa Fe.

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