Investigating Stumpware: Evidence for Pre-Mississippian Nixtamalization in Illinois

Alleen Betzenhauser, Victoria Potter, Sarah Harken

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


Stumpware is an unusual ceramic utensil that appears abruptly at the beginning of the Terminal Late Woodland period (AD 900) in the American Bottom region of Illinois. Several functions have been postulated but the timing of its introduction (coincident with the beginning of maize horticulture in the region) and the prevalence of white residue are suggestive of their role in the production of quicklime for use in the nixtamalization of corn (see Benchley 2003). We present the initial results of our efforts to test this hypothesis by creating replica stumpware and using them to convert limestone to quicklime.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 74th Annual Meeting
StatePublished - 2017

Publication series



  • ISAS


Dive into the research topics of 'Investigating Stumpware: Evidence for Pre-Mississippian Nixtamalization in Illinois'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this