The beginning of the neolith is related to the emergence of new forms of behavior in the life of a prehistoric man, i.e. the onset of farming and livestock breeding, and of the production of ceramic goods and iron stone tools.
The objects made of baked clay, primarily ceramic dishes, represent an elementary guidepost of cultural development in Neolith. The shapes of dishes, as well as the manner of its decoration, indicate the distribution of particular cultural groups, the direction of expansion, as well as the interactions between them. Due to importance of ceramics for the Neolith, the Austrian archaeologist Richard Pittioni introduces the term Keramikum in pre-historical terminology (Gavela, 1968: 7) for the Neolithic period of Europe.
In the expansion of Neolithic groups in Bosnia and Herzegovina, two natural communications played the most important role: the valleys of the Bosna and Neretva rivers, that linked the Adriatic Sea with the Danube. Outside these main communications, there was one Neolithic pocket in the North-East Bosnia with the center in present-day Tuzla, where the Starčevo and Vinča Neolithic cultural groups found refuge in the turbulent times.
Although this area is far from the main centers of the Neolithic period, its peripheral position does not in any way presuppose its poverty in cultural content. On the contrary, research has shown that in the early and middle Neolithic period this region had specific, self-inherent development, as evidenced by the phenomena in the old-age material of Gornja Tuzla and the palafitte settlement in Tuzla, which are not found in the other Starčevo localities in the Balkans. The developmental specific features are first identified in the younger Neolithic Vinča culture, which led to the creation of the term “Eastern Bosnian variant” of Vinča culture.
The locality of the palafitte settlement that was located in the historical center of Tuzla is archaeologically interesting and unique for these areas. The locality is not only unique for its way of construction and layout of the settlement, but also for the oldest salt production and salty water exploitation discovered in Europe.