Soapstone Cup


Soapstone Cup


This unusual small cup was found at a site in Montgomery County in southwestern Virginia. While the date for this item is uncertain, archaeologists know that steatite, or soapstone, was an important material for people living in the Late Archaic period. Late Arhaic people produced and traded soapstone bowls across vast distances despite their cumbersome weight. Chemical analyses have shown that the central Piedmont region was the source of many soapstone bowls that were found hundreds of miles to the East on the Coastal Plain, where such stone is not available naturally. (Photo enhanced)

Date Created

3000 B.C.E. - 1600 C.E.


Virginia Department of Historic Resources, Richmond, VA



Physical Dimension

542 × 516


Montgomery County

File: 44MY0018_small_steatite_cup.tif