Recent scholarship has theorized that these vessels were largely ceremonial and possibly used for conjuring. Recommend readings included Mark M. Newell with Peter Lenzo, "Making Faces: Archaeological Evidence of African-American Face Jug Production," American Ceramics 2006, ed. Robert Hunter, (Milwaukee, WI: Chipstone foundation, 2006), pp. 122-38, Claudia Arzeno Mooney, April L. Hynes, and Mark M. Newell, "African-American Face Vessels: History and Ritual in 19th-Century Edgefield," American Ceramics 2013, ed. Robert Hunter, (Milwaukee, WI: Chipstone foundation, 2013), pp. 2-37, and the Chipstone foundation's exhibition Face Jugs: Art and Ritual in Nineteenth-century South Carolina accessible online at http://chipstone.org/exhibitionframe.php/5/Face-Jugs/.