Native Americans began making ceramic objects from clay about 3000 years ago. They made cooking and storage pots, bowls, and smoking pipes. Before they made ceramic pipes, smoking pipes were carved out of steatite (soapstone), which was also used for cooking and storage containers. Ceramic pipes were made with a range of decorative motifs from the simplest with no designs like the example here, to incised geometric lines and patterns. Pipes were used for smoking tobacco, a special plant tended by Native American men. Tobacco was used sparingly in ritual ceremonies for healing and religious purposes.
Date: 1000 BCE - 300 BCE