The famous and highly sought-after Mimbres painted pottery in southwestern New Mexico continues to fascinate people today as much as it did when it first became known more than a century ago. Despite several publications promoting Mimbres archaeology and innumerable analyses of style, dating, iconography, meaning, identity, use wear, and trade and travel implications, however, there had been little interest in the actual production of Mimbres pottery. This changed with the professional investigations of the 1970s when petrographic analysis began, and then again, in the late 1980s and 1990s, when Instrumental Neutron Activation Analysis (INAA) was first employed in the study of Mimbres pottery production and distribution.
The Production and Distribution of Mimbres Pottery assesses a much-expanded INAA data set and presents a new and more-informed interpretation of ceramic production and distribution in the Mimbres region. The results should guide future research in the region and will also serve as an example of how INAA data can help students and scholars understand many other interrelated aspects of prehistoric Mimbres society in addition to Mimbres pottery production.