It is with sadness that I have to convey the news of James Stoltman's passing, on September 11, 2019, in Madison, Wisconsin, at age 84. Unbeknown to most, he had cancer, but did not show any signs of the illness until very late, and this summer was still working on ceramic petrography for a Chinese project. Jim Stoltman has been a pioneer in ceramic petrography in the US, on the tracks of Anna Shepard, studying and confirming her work. He was instrumental in presenting a methodology of point counting technique as applied to ceramic analysis (e.g.1989), thus promoting quantitative analysis in petrography. He has been a prolific writer, specialized in North American archaeology, publishing many petrographic studies on Mississippian and Hopewell ceramics, as well as being involved in Belgium, and in Chinese projects for several years, notably at Anyang. Jim was Emeritus Professor at the Department of Anthropology at UW-Madison where he taught for many years. He was an avid tennis player, traveler, very positive person and great colleague.

We will miss him a lot.

Isabelle Druc


Selected bibliography

1989. A quantitative approach to the petrographic analysis of ceramic thin sections. American Antiquity 54(1): 147-160

1999. The Chaco-Chuska Connection: In defense of Anna Shepard. In: Pottery and People. A Dynamic Interaction, J.M. Skibo and G.M. Feinman (eds), pp. 9-24. Foundation for Archaeological Inquiry, Utah Press, Salt Lake City.

2009. with Zhichun J., Jigen T., and G. Rapp. Ceramic production in Shang Societies of Anyang. Asian Perspectives 48(1): 182-203.

2015. Ceramic petrography and Hopewell Interaction. The University of Alabama Press, Tuscaloosa.


2017. The Use of Loess in Pottery Manufacture: A Comparative Analysis of Pottery from Yinxu in North China and LBK Sites in Belgium. In: Integrative approaches in ceramic petrography, M. Ownby, I. Druc, M Masucci (eds), pp. 116-127. The University of Utah Press, Salt Lake City.

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