Courtesy Pocumtuck Valley Memorial Association, Deerfield, MA

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Steatite vessel

Native Americans of New England had very diverse diets. In addition to their staple corn, Natives ate a wide variety of foods including kidney beans, squash, and "Jerusalem" artichokes. Women were not only responsible for growing all food, but for preparing it as well. Steatite or soapstone bowls like this one were useful because they were watertight and could be placed directly in a fire to cook stews and other foodstuffs. Another cooking method was to place hot stones into these bowls to cook the soup or stew.

Date: circa 7000 B.C.E - 3000 B.C.E 
Topic: Household 
Materials: steatite or soapstone
Dimensions: H: 5 in. (12.7 cm), W: 13.25 in. (33.6 cm) 
Accession #: 1985.0409

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