Ancestral Pueblo: Greater Upper Rio Grande ValleyNorthern Rio GrandeGreater Tewa Basin (Northern Tewa)Northern Rio Grande Historic Plain WareSan Juan Red-on-tan

Type Name: San Juan Red-on-tan

Period: 1750 A.D. - 1920 A.D.
Culture: Ancestral Pueblo: Greater Upper Rio Grande Valley
Branch: Northern Rio Grande
Tradition: Greater Tewa Basin (Northern Tewa)
Ware: Northern Rio Grande Historic Plain Ware

First posted by C. Dean Wilson 2012

San Juan Red-on-tan refers to pottery exhibiting a red slipped band on the top part of the vessel (Frank and Harlow 1990; Harlow 1973; Levine 2001; Toulouse 1977; Wilson 2011). Pottery assigned to this type appears to have been produced from the middle eighteenth to early twentieth century.

The color of this slip is similar to that described for other historic Tewa slipped red wares types. The slip used to make red-on-tan vessels in San Juan Pueblo during the nineteenth century were purchased from Hispanics in Abiquiu (Schroeder 1964). The first few centimeters of the upper vessel interior or exterior of this form is covered with slip clay that may range from bright red, dark red, to purple. The slipped area is usually narrow, often covering only 10 mm or less and seldom more than 30 mm on the interior and exteriors of bowls and jar exteriors. The pattern of red slip on these areas is similar to that noted on nineteenth century Pueblo polychrome forms, indicative of related technologies and decorative conventions. Decorated areas are often broader on the exteriors of jars, where the slip may cover the entire neck. Temper is a fine tuff similar to that noted in other plain wares with mica particles sometimes visible through surface. Forms are similar to those noted in Powhoge Polychrome and appear to be mainly represented by deep and shallow bowls, jars, and soup plates.

Frank, Larry and Francis H. Harlow
1990 Historic Pottery of the Pueblo Indians 1600-1880. Schiffer Publishing, Ltd., West Chester.

Harlow, Francis H.
1973 Matte Paint Pottery of the Tewa, Keres, and Zuni Pueblos. Museum of New Mexico, Santa Fe.

Levine, Daisy
2001 Analysis and Interpretation of Ceramics from the Pedro Sanchez Site, In Prehistoric and HistoricOccupation at Los Alamos and Guaje Canyons: Data Recovery at Three; Sites near the Pueblo of San Ildenfonsio, by James L. Moore, pp 129-138. Office of Archaeological Studies Archaeology Notes 244, Museum of New Mexico, Santa Fe.

Schroeder, Gail D.
1964 San Juan Pottery: Methods and Incentives. El Palacio 71(1):45-51.

Toulouse, Betty
1977 Pueblo Pottery of the New Mexico Indians; Ever Constant Ever Changing. Museum of New Mexico Press, Santa Fe.

Wilson C. Dean
2011 Historic Indigenous Ceramic Types. In Settlers and Soldiers: The Historic Component at El Pueblo de Santa Fe (LA 1051), by S. C. Lentz and M. J. Barbour, pp 223 -234. Archaeology Notes, 438. Office of Archaeological Studies, Museum of New Mexico, Santa Fe.

Related Photos

San Juan Red-on-tan jar sherd

San Juan Red-on-tan soup plate sherds

San Juan Red-on-tan bowl

San Juan Red-on-tan soup plate sherd

San Juan Red-on-tan soup bowl sherds

San Juan Red-on-tan bowl sherds