Parker VanValkenburgh received funding from the University of Missouri Research Reactor (MURR) to conduct Instrumental Neutron Activation Analysis (INAA) on samples of archaeological ceramics from Peru’s north coast region. INAA is a technique used to identify the concentrations of trace and major elements in a variety of materials, and VanValkenburgh and colleagues Sarah Kelloway (University of New South Wales) and Jeffrey Quilter (Harvard University) will be employing it to trace patterns of production in a unique type of early colonial ceramics called Early Green Glazed (EGG) Ware. EGG Ware vessels, like the one pictured in the attached photograph, have classically prehispanic-style forms but incorporate a decorative technique (glazing) that was unknown in the Americas before the Spanish colonial era. Archaeologists and historians have seen such pieces as iconic elements of contact between native and Spanish traditions, but they have never been systematically studied, until now.
On January 10th, Dr. VanValkenburgh also co-organized a session at the Society for Historical Archaeology annual meetings entitled “Las preguntas que cuentan: Ideas and interpretations in Latin American historical Archaeology.” The full-day session, hosted jointly with Ross Jamieson (Simon Fraser University) featured work by over 20 scholars conducting research in a growing and dynamic field — the archaeology of Latin American sites dating after the Spanish Invasion of the Americas.