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Northeastern Native Americans made and used this stone mortar 2,000-3000 years ago, before they began to cultivate corn. It is made out of steatite, which was also used for stone bowls and containers. A grinding stone was used in this mortar to rub and grind the hard nuts and seeds into a paste or flour, which could then be used for cooking. Because this mortar is made of stone, it was not easily portable and Native Americans would leave them in locations near to their nut harvest for easy use in the field. Mortars were sometimes made of hollowed logs but these would often decay.

 

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Mortar

creator   Unidentified
date   -3000--2000
location   Unknown
diameter   10.5"
width   16.0"
height   5.5"
process/materials   steatite
item type   Household Goods/Food Processing Tools & Equipment
accession #   #1994.15.01


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