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(Jemez Pueblo  (19th Century)


The Jemez people migrated to the Canon de San Diego region near present day Albuquerque from the Four Corners area of the United States between AD 1275 and 1350 A.D.   From prehistoric times, they have manufactured pottery, which included several different designs, ranging from plain utility pots and jars to a black-on-white pots and jars, highly prized by both archeologists and museums.  According to the oral history of the Jemez at the Walatowa Pueblo, however, the manufacture of decorated pottery types of Jemez black-on-white ceased in the early to eighteenth century when they shattered literally hundreds of the vessels, so that they wouldn’t get in to the hands of the Spanish.   Manufacturing of this type of pottery, in fact, was never resumed, and, for the next two hundred years, the Jemez People relied on decorated pottery obtained from their Keresan neighbors, primarily the Pueblo of Zia.  Eventually, many of the Zia designs were incorporated into a new style of pottery, which the Jemez began to produce around the turn of the century.  Though based on Zia design, this new style of Jemez pottery soon emerged with a distinctive Jemez signature of black-on-red ware.  From left to right, the Jemez jar and three miniatures shown below belong to the best tradition of Jemez family pottery manufacture.