As a fair warning, the term “Indian clay” is just what my lake community has used to describe the clay we find at the bottom of our lake. I don’t think this term has any actually meaning behind it! As I’ve mentioned before, I work at a summer camp as the head counselor. This camp takes place at the lake that I’ve lived on all of my life. As a child, my friends and I would always be on the hunt for this “Indian clay” and dig for it all day long. This tradition has held strong, and I often notice the kids in camp searching for the clay throughout the day.
At work on Friday I was with the young ones, about 4 years old, and decided to introduce them to this awesome lake phenomenon. As I dug for the clay, I began to wonder if I would ever be able to use this clay, like I use the clay I get at school to make pots. With some research, I plan to dig up some of this clay and attempt to refine it. I’m sure this clay is filled with other materials like rocks and gravel and twigs, so I’ll have to go through some effort in order to make this clay as pure as possible. First I plan to dig it up and pull out as much extraneous materials as I can, then let it dry out in the sun. After I’ll break it up and put it in a bucket and add some water, mixing it. I’ll have to get a screen to sift the material as well. I’m so excited to try this out! I would love to make something out of clay from my hometown. I’ll keep you guys updated!