Ancestral Puebloan Tularosa Snowflake pattern Rattle Ladle
This is a Tularosa Snowflake Black-on-White rattle ladle whose handle has been broken, probably during antiquity. The beads which were inside the handle are missing. The rest of the ladle is in very good shape, considering its age. There is a small chip just to the left of the handle at the bowl.
The Tularosa pottery from the Starkweather Ruin near Reserve in Catron County southwest NM has been divided into three styles. The name Snowflake is used as a designation of the location where the pottery was found at the Starkweather Ruin. Snowflake black-on white pottery consisted of interior designs in repeated thick rectangular lines that meet at right angles with a balance of solid and hatched elements.
The name “Anasazi” originated from a Navajo word that translates at “enemy ancestor” or “ancient people who are not us” depending on pronunciation. The name “Anasazi” gained popularity during the century. The Hopi have always claimed these people as their ancestors. The Hopi would prefer the “Anasazi” to be called “Hisatsinom”, which means people of long ago. The term preferred today is “Ancestral Puebloan” or Ancestral Pueblo” to identify the first ancestors.
Archeologists are unsure as to the origins of these ancient peoples; some believe that they are descendants from the Archaic Desert Culture others speculate that they are a branch of the Mogollon who came to the region from the South. Most agree that they did not disappear but are the ancestors of the Hopi and Zuni and possibly some of the other Northern Pueblos.
During the first part of their civilization, they did not live in the cliff dwelling that they are most famous for. Instead, they started in pithouses. These structures were built three to five feet into the ground and had roofs supported by poles and beams that were covered by brush and mud. These early Anasazi lived in small communities, mostly near their fields where they grew corn, squash, and beans. They gathered agave, walnuts, pinion nuts, acorns, prickly pear, yucca, wild potatoes and Indian rice grass. Other plants served as medicines, fuel and building materials. The Ancestral Puebloans hunted large game including deer, elk, antelope, and mountain sheep and smaller animals such as turkey, rabbits, fish, rodents, and a variety of birds.
The Ancestral Puebloan culture was one that was widespread, and many varieties exist with their pottery. Pots that were in use every day were made from a grayish material, and the bottom was not a flat surface. They were formed from sandstone and shale clay. Many pots had painted designs made out of red or black and were designed by using a brush that was typically made from a yucca plant.
Condition: The rattle ladle handle has been broken. The beads which were inside the handle are missing. The rest of the ladle is in very good shape, considering its age. There is a small chip just to the left of the handle at the bowl. It has not been restored or repaired.
Provenance: Acquired by my mother from the Museum of Science and History of Fort Worth in the 1960s and maintained in the family gallery; authenticated by Walter Knox of Scottsdale Auctions and Appraisals.