Duck Pots in Brooklyn: Rediscovering the Hunters Point Chacoan Community
Ravenous collectors stripped antiquities from Ancestral Puebloan communities at the turn of the 20th century. They shipped boxcar loads of artifacts to museums in the eastern United States and overseas. Generations of archaeologists wrote off these “legacy collections” as devoid of interest, but today, we are rediscovering their value. The Brooklyn Museum of Art’s collection of pottery from the “Chacoan outlier” community of Hunters Point, located near Window Rock, Arizona, is largely untouched for over a century and comprises over 140 whole vessels. The collection contains a surprising variety of vessel forms, including bird-shaped pitchers and represents a wide range of potters’ skills, from beginners to master potters. We reunite scattered archival information about the Hunters Point Great House community with our study of the ceramic data to reconstruct the community’s timeline, network relationships, and distinctive features, and offer insights into the western frontier of the Chaco world.