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How People in the American Southwest Kept Water Cool Before Refrigeration

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I love videos like this that introduce me to a history I knew nothing about and then show me a project that brings that history to life.

In this Andy Ward’s Ancient Pottery video, he gives a brief history of the olla, an porous, unglazed type of earthenware pot used in the southwest, by native Americans (who may have gotten it from the Spanish), and then by Colonial settlers. Then he shows us how to make one and tests it against a plastic pitcher.

Because of the porous nature of the pots, the water inside soaks into the clay and sweats through, causing the outside to cool off, keeping the water inside cool.

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  • Source: https://blog.adafruit.com/2022/08/17/how-people-in-the-american-southwest-kept-water-cool-before-refrigeration/

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