Yadkin Fabric Impressed

from David Anderson's type description


The type Yadkin Fabric Marked was formally defined by Coe (1964 31-32), based on a sample of 269 sherds from the Doerschuk site. The ware is characterized by large, angular fragments of quartz (averaging about 3.0 mm in diameter) in the paste and finely woven, wicker fabric impressions with a rigid warp element, which were ca. 4 mm wide) over the exterior surface of most specimens. A minority of the fabric marked sherds in the type sample 17.1 percent) also had clay/grog inclusions with the crushed quartz in the paste (Coe 1964:30, 32), suggesting some kind of ties with the makers of the Hanover/Wilmington wares to the south and east (see also background discussion for Yadkin Cord Marked). Vessel forms at the type site were shallow bowls and large, straight to slightly constricted jars.

A large sample of Yadkin Fabric Marked sherds with subangular or unmodified quartz temper were reported at 38SU83 in Sumter County, South Carolina (Blanton et al. The sample resembled materials from the type site in having stiff or rigid warp elements that ranged from 4 to 7 mm wide. The weft was produced with cordage 0.5 to 1.5 mm in diameter that was all characterized by an S-twist.

A total of 74 Fabric Marked sherds were recovered in the 1979 excavation units at Mattassee Lake, almost all from site 38BK246 (Anderson et al.1982: 299-300) The entire assemblage was characterized by rigid warp elements, with cross-stamping infrequent. The stamping is typically applied at high angles to the rim (stamp orientation determined by the alignment of the warp element with the rim). The assemblage is dominated by reddish-brown exteriors, although interiors are more variable and tend to be lighter colored. The paste is characterized by large amounts of rounded and subrounded quartz gravel; these inclusions are naturally weathered and have not been crushed, a primary difference between the Mattassee Lake assemblage and the Doerschuk type site material. The interiors are smooth and somewhat roughened, primarily because the extensive gravel in the paste results in a lumpy surface. Rims are typically excurvate, with flat or thickened, lips that are commonly decorated. Lip treatment includes both simple stamping and fabric impressions. The assemblage appears to derive from large jars.

The Lake Yadkin Fabric Marked material differs somewhat from Coe's (1964: 31-32)type sample, primarily in paste (rounded versus crushed inclusions), rim form (excurvate versus straight), and lip shape and treatment (flattened and decorated opposed to rounded and plain). The paste differs in the same respect (rounded versus crushed inclusions) from Loftfield's (1976: 166-168) series, although no fabric impressed finish was reported from that series. (1981) Mount Pleasant series appears quite similar, with rounded gravel inclusions and a fabric impressed exterior finish. Specimens of Yadkin Fabric Impressed from Mattassee Lake were, in fact, inspected by Dr. David S. Phelps (personnel communication 1982, who pronounced them within the range of variation for the northern coastal North Carolina Mt. Pleasant type. The Mattassee Lake Yadkin-like material was distinctive, however, both in appearance and distribution, from the Cape Fear Fabric Impressed material Phelps also included in the Mt. Pleasant type range, and formal separation of the two wares is believed warranted. Use of Yadkin, as opposed to Mt. Pleasant terminology for the primary type reflects the relative proximity of the Doerschuk type site, and the close temporal equivalence of the two collections.

Sorting Criteria

Fabric impressions, typically characterized by a rigid warp element, applied over the exterior surface while the paste was plastic; occasionally smoothed somewhat after stamping. Paste characterized by large amounts of rounded and sub-rounded or crushed white and clear quartz gravel (1.0-8.0 mm; average about 3.0 mm). Rims typically excurvate with flattened, decorated simple stamped or fabric impressed) lips.


The ware is most commonly reported in the inner Coastal Plain and lower Piedmont of North and South Carolina in the vicinity of the boundary between the two states, from roughly the Santee-Wateree to the Cape Fear rivers. The ware does not appear to be common in the lower Coastal Plain of either state.

Chronological Position

Early-Middle Woodland (ca. 500 BC -AD 500).

Primary References

Coe (1952, 1964; Yadkin Fabric Marked type); Ferguson (1976; Yadkin-like ceramics); Cable and Cantley (1979; Yadkin-like ceramics); Trinkley 1980a, Yadkin ceramics); Loftfield (1976; Onslow series ceramics); Phelps (1981; Mount Pleasant series ceramics). Anderson et al. 1982: (1982: 299-301); Blanton et al.(1986:70).