Sadie Adams

Sadie Adams (1905-1995) was a Hopi-Tewa potter from the village of Hano at First Mesa. Sadie's daughter, Lorna Lomakema, was born in 1930. That was about the same time she began making pottery and she kept making pottery until 1981. Her husband, Wilbur Adams, passed away in 1937 and Sadie raised her daughter and supported her family through the sale of her pottery.

Sadie made tiles with her daughter and made traditional yellow ware jars, bowls, cylinders, lamps and tiles on her own. She did well enough with her pottery sales she could afford to put Lorna through nursing school.

Tiles are among the hardest of all ceramics to make because they tend to warp and curl when drying and during firing. Sadie was a master tile maker. For many years she sold almost everything she made through Lorenzo Hubbell's Trading Post in Ganado. As a young woman she had worked there, along with Laura Lomakema, Fannie Nampeyo and Rachel Namingha. After her daughter was born, she went back to the trading post and showed them what she was making. They bought everything she brought and encouraged her to make more.

Lorna remembers: "My earliest recollection of my mother and tiles was when the Coltons at the Museum of Northern Arizona asked her to make the tiles framing the announcement boards at the entrance." (The Coltons were the founders of the Museum of Northern Arizona.)

Sadie signed her pieces with a hallmark peach blossom, denoting her Hopi name which meant Flower Woman.

Red and black thunderbird design on a yellow ware cylinder
Yellow ware cylinder decorated with a red and black thunderbird design
11 in H by 5 3/4 in Dia
Bird element designs on a yellow ware bowl
Yellowware bowl decorated with bird element designs
3 3/4 in H by 7 3/4 in Dia
Bird element design on a polychrome tile
Polychrome tile decorated with a bird element design
5 3/4 in H by 4 in Dia Dated c. 1935
Medium shard design on a polychrome tile
Polychrome tile decorated with a medium sized shard design
4 1/4 in H by 4 1/4 in Dia
Katsina design on a polychrome tile
Polychrome tile decorated with a katsina design
7 in H by 5 1/4 in Dia
Geometric design on a black on yellow tile
Black geometric design on a yellow tile
6 in H by 4 in Dia
Bird element and geometric design on a polychrome tile
Polychrome tile decorated with a bird element and geometric design
5 3/4 in H by 4 in Dia
c. 1935
Thunderbird design on a polychrome tile
Polychrome tile decorated with a thunderbird design
6 in H by 3 3/4 in Dia
c. 1935
Katsina design on a polychrome tile
Polychrome tile decorated with a katsina design
7 in H by 5 in Dia
Katsina design on a polychrome tile Polychrome tile with a Palhik Mana design
7 in H by 5 1/2 in Dia

Hopi Potters