Archaeology Café Online: Was Sells Red Pottery a Marker of Tohono O’odham Identity in Late Precontact Times? Archaeological and Ethnographic Perspectives with Bill Doelle and Samuel Fayuant

Archaeology Café Online

From our house to yours…The 14th season of Archaeology Café celebrates and shares Archaeology Southwest’s current Preservation Archaeology projects with you. Our staff members will bring you in on what we’re doing right now to learn more about the past and help protect special places.

Join us on May 4, 2021, when President and CEO Bill Doelle and Samuel Fayuant (Tohono O’odham Nation) will discuss “Was Sells Red Pottery a Marker of Tohono O’odham Identity in Late Precontact Times? Archaeological and Ethnographic Perspectives.”

From Bill and Samuel:

“Over the past eight months, we have been meeting to explore the significance of a distinctive redware pottery called Sells Red. The pottery was first named based on an excavation at Jackrabbit Ruin, a site that dated to the late 1200s through the early or mid-1400s.

“Petrographer Mary Ownby studied the ceramic temper—material added to the clay to make it more elastic and less prone to cracking—from a series of sites where Sells Red was recovered. She noted that the temper was not a match for the sands in the vicinity of Jackrabbit. Instead, a geologic map prepared by Gordon Haxel indicated a distinctive rock zone near Baboquivari Peak, the sacred mountain of the Tohono O’odham.

“We have discussed the geology with Haxel, Ownby, and regional pottery expert Jim Heidke, and we have visited many different sites where Sells Red is found. We also talked with interested Tohono O’odham elders and others to hear their perspectives on this pottery. We’ll share our process of discovery, our current thinking, and some of our unresolved questions.”


Space is limited, so register for free today at the link below to participate, and join in at 6:00 p.m. MST on October 6, 2020, through Zoom* on your preferred device. Preregistration is required before the event.

Register Here

*After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the webinar. Even though you'll be able to see and hear us during this live online event, we won't be able to see or hear you—no need to change out of pajamas or hush a barking dog, come as you are!

Load up a plate, grab a drink, and tune in!


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Register here ahead of time, and meet us virtually through your preferred device using Zoom. Cameras and microphones aren't necessary.

During the presentation, you can use the question-and-answer tool within Zoom Webinar to ask questions as they come to mind. We will be monitoring the question-and-answer feed during the program, and we’ll tag questions for the presenter to address in the Q & A portion.


No problem! About a week after each café, we’ll post videos of each presentation to the video archive on our website and to our YouTube channel. We’ll share links on our Facebook and Twitter and in our Southwest Archaeology Today and This Month at Archaeology Southwest email newsletters.


Presented by Archaeology Southwest, a nonprofit organization working across the Southwest to explore and protect the places of our past, Archaeology Café is an informal forum where knowledge seekers can learn more about the Southwest’s deep history and speak directly to experts. View the current Archaeology Café season here.

This program was made possible by The Smith Living Trust.


6 p.m. to 7 p.m. May 4, 2021