New Jersey Indian Mortar and Pestle


Courtesy, New Jersey Historical Society, Newark, 1700

These stone tools, a well-worn mortar and pestle, were made and used by New Jersey Indians after the time of European settlement, though we do not know where nor by which group. The mortar fits neatly into the palm of a hand and the pestle, with its smooth, rounded ends, is the correct size for grinding in the mortar. The mortar and pestle are too small to be practical for grinding grain, but Lenape women may have used these implements in making medicines to use in caring for the sick and in making colors for decorating their bodies.

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