Tim Rast of Elfshot made some Thule pottery:

Making pottery in the Arctic had many challenges.  Thule pots were not always fired, and when they were they would have been fired at relatively low temperatures.  The clay vessels were slowly dried and hardened next to a fire, but were not always fired directly in the hearth.  Based on ethnographic observations and Harry et al’s experiments there were some clever uses of seal blood and oil to augment the functional properties of the pots. Blood or oil applied as a slip to the leather hard vessels resulted in a pot that could more easily be heated and bring the contents to a boil.  Organic tempers were frequently used, perhaps to help make the clay more workable and dry more evenly to prevent cracking, but at the cost of creating a porous vessel.  Harry et al found that some vessels were so porous that they could not hold water, but boiling oil in them would effectively seal the pore spaces and make them watertight.  Very cool stuff.  All that iron and organic matter is going to be important in giving the final reproduction the right colour, texture, and age.

There are two more posts in the series.

Tim Rast of Elfshot made some Thule pottery:

Making pottery in the Arctic had many challenges.  Thule pots were not always fired, and when they were they would have been fired at relatively low temperatures.  The clay vessels were slowly dried and hardened next to a fire, but were not always fired directly in the hearth.  Based on ethnographic observations and Harry et al’s experiments there were some clever uses of seal blood and oil to augment the functional properties of the pots. Blood or oil applied as a slip to the leather hard vessels resulted in a pot that could more easily be heated and bring the contents to a boil.  Organic tempers were frequently used, perhaps to help make the clay more workable and dry more evenly to prevent cracking, but at the cost of creating a porous vessel.  Harry et al found that some vessels were so porous that they could not hold water, but boiling oil in them would effectively seal the pore spaces and make them watertight.  Very cool stuff.  All that iron and organic matter is going to be important in giving the final reproduction the right colour, texture, and age.

There are two more posts in the series.