The long history of human occupation in the Nile valley and nearby deserts is often best documented by the tools left behind when sites were abandoned. In recent years, scholars have become increasingly interested in the early periods of Egyptian settlement, and consequently much more is now known about them. The tools of the early Paleolithic period were often hand axes, but in later periods the tool kits became highly varied, with small stone blades becoming very common items. The variety within and between tool kits was due to differences in the environmental zones people occupied and the types of resources they exploited. During the Epipaleolithic period ca. The hollow-base arrowhead illustrated here was a common type in the Neolithic period ca. These projectile points were most often made from chert, often called flint, which was found in the form of cobbles lying on the high desert’s surface. Whether the arrowheads were attached to wooden shafts or used in spears is difficult to confirm, but representations of men drawing bows can be seen on jars from the early Predynastic Period ca.
Tag: projectile points
Of particular interest are public and private artifact collections containing projectile point types dating between roughly 11, and 8, radiocarbon years.
Arrowheads are among the most easily recognized type of artifact found in the world. Untold generations of children poking around in parks or farm fields or creek beds have discovered these rocks that have clearly been shaped by humans into pointed working tools. Our fascination with them as children is probably why there are so many myths about them, and almost certainly why those children sometimes grow up and study them.
Here are some common misconceptions about arrowheads, and some things that archaeologists have learned about these ubiquitous objects. Arrowheads, objects fixed to the end of a shaft and shot with a bow, are only a fairly small subset of what archaeologists call projectile points. A projectile point is a broad category of triangularly pointed tools made of stone, shell, metal, or glass and used throughout prehistory and the world over to hunt game and practice warfare.
A projectile point has a pointed end and some kind of worked element called the haft, which enabled attaching the point to a wood or ivory shaft.
Most of the historic artifacts date to the 19th century and most likely represent refuse-disposal or manuring associated with nearby farms. Most of the stone artifacts represent waste material or debitage discarded during the manufacture of stone tools. Such artifacts are very common at prehistoric sites where stone tools were manufactured and re-sharpened.
The projectile points from level IV at the Sorensen site seem to be smaller than many other side- notched points of the Early Archaic. The radiocarbon date.
One of the biggest challenges archaeologists have is the consistent identification of projectile point types. This book presents a comprehensive typology of the projectile points that were made by the earliest farmers in the Greater Southwest during the last two millennia B. Textual descriptions are accompanied by photographs and diagrams showing how key attributes are discerned and combined into diagnostic sets that are used for type identifications. Case studies drawn from cultural resources management projects stretching from northern Sonora to the Four Corners are presented to demonstrate how projectile point typological data may be combined with anthropological and sociological theory to investigate issues of migration, social identity, and social relations in the archaeological record.
Jane Sliva has worked with lithic assemblages from a variety of regions and time periods in Europe, the Middle East, and South America. Since , she has focused on the flaked stone technology of the U. Southwest and Northwest Mexico. In addition to refining projectile point typologies, she has developed techniques for using the patterns apparent within debitage assemblages to address questions of temporal affiliation and spatial organization within archaeological sites in Arizona.
Projectile Point Workshop
Clovis points have been found across North America and northern South America. Typical examples are medium to large lanceolate points, with convex sides broadest near the midsection or toward the base. The base of the point is concave, and the characteristic long, shallow grooves, or flutes , appear on one or more commonly both sides of the point. The flutes likely made it easier to fasten the points to wooden spears, atlatl dart shafts and handles.
Edgar B. Howard, an archaeologist working with the University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology, identified the Clovis point in , during investigations of a gravel pit along a stream near the town of Clovis, New Mexico.
Florida Projectile Points: Identification & Geographic Range (North American Projectile Point Includes major opinions on date ranges for each point type.
Two fluted points from this collection, pictured above, are on display in Pennsylvania Icons at The State Museum. Fluted projectile points are lanceolate in shape, averaging 4-to-8 centimeters long with a flute or groove extending from the base to nearly the entire length of the point. Fluted points are the hallmark artifact of the Paleoindian period and, arguably, the most difficult stone artifact ever to be made in North America. Dating to between 13, to 12, years ago, the points are unique to this time period and are only found in North America.
The Paleoindian period dates to the Pleistocene or Ice Age. Covering roughly 35 acres, the area remains one of the largest Paleoindian sites in the commonwealth. Farver and Witthoft collected hundreds of stone tools, including fluted points and hide scraping tools. He identified the stone used to make 98 percent of these tools as Onondaga chert. The nearest source of Onondaga chert is western New York, miles to the north of the Shoop site. Accordingly, Witthoft argued that the inhabitants of the Shoop site came from that region.
As part of his hypothesis, he noted that the spear points and other tools were all re-sharpened several times because they are so far from the bedrock source. Interestingly, one of the points in this photograph top row, right is not Onondaga chert and comes from the Hudson Valley in eastern New York, which is also approximately miles from the bedrock source. No food remains were found, but it is difficult to attribute the high number of spear points and hide scraping tools on a ridge top setting to anything other than hunting.
Maine Memory Network
Prev– Grass-opal phytoliths as climatic indicators Next– Paleoindian sites in the Neosho River drainage. The archeological record of the paleoindian occupation of present Kansas is scant and consists, for the most part, of 27 recorded sites and additional isolated finds of temporally and culturally diagnostic projectile points. A compilation of locational and typological data concerning this record as it is known to date is presented. The few excavated sites of late Pleistocene and early Holocene human populations in Kansas are briefly discussed.
An attempt is made to discern any pattern in the association of paleoindian sites with topographic features and soil complexes. It is suggested that the distribution of paleoindian sites in Kansas reflects archeological-survey biases in certain topographic settings, primarily stream valleys, and regions, primarily the eastern half, of the state.
Therefore, they are very useful as chronological markers and dating archaeology sites. Bifurcate projectile points are diagnostic for the period.
Dovetail is a full service, woman-owned Cultural Resource Management firm headquartered in Fredericksburg, Virginia and serves the Mid-Atlantic Region. This period represents the earliest occupation of North America, when people were settling into new environments that would ultimately shape the way their culture and technology evolved in different parts of the continent. For September we will look at a Paleoindian artifact that continues our series highlighting materials recovered from the Asheboro Bypass Project in Randolph County, North Carolina.
Among the sites identified during this project was the Graceland site 31RD The majority of the 3, artifacts recovered from the site date to the Morrow Mountain and Guilford phases of the Middle Archaic period, spanning a date range from approximately 5, to 3, BC Blondino and Proper However, a Hardaway side-notched point dating to the late Paleoindian period indicates that the site was being used much earlier.
Excavations at the Slade site in southeastern Virginia suggest a date range of 8,—8, BC for the Hardaway phase McAvoy and McAvoy , making these points approximately 10, years old! Hardaway side-notched point from the Graceland site. The Hardaway point from the Graceland site is made of a metavolcanic rock common to this part of North Carolina and quarried by the prehistoric occupants of the site as a material from which to make projectile points and other stone tools. The site itself is located on a slight slope near a natural drainage which channels surface water during heavy rain.
As a result, there is more erosion here than in nearby areas, exposing the bedrock and making it easier to get to.
Maine Memory Network
This page is your gateway to two types of point typology indexes:. The assumption in using this index is that you know the type and want to view information about the type. The Shape Index is my newest index. It is designed to help you identify a projectile point type that you may not know the name of. The shape or morphology index is organized by 10 major hafting area shape groups.
An explanation and example for using the shape index is provided at the top of that index.
A type of large, thin points with straight or expanding stems. Alamo stemmed points are found in the San Francisco Bay and Sacramento delta areas and dated.
Projectile weapons i. Projectiles therefore provided a significant advantage over thrusting spears. Composite projectile technologies are considered indicative of complex behavior and pivotal to the successful spread of Homo sapiens. In combination with the existing archaeological, fossil and genetic evidence, these data isolate eastern Africa as a source of modern cultures and biology. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
The funders had no role in study design, data collection and analysis, decision to publish, or preparation of the manuscript. Competing interests: The authors have declared that no competing interests exist. A key component in prehistoric subsistence strategies, the invention of projectile weapons was a decisive advance over the thrusting spear  — . The ability to wound or kill dangerous animals or enemies at a distance is considered one of the most significant adaptive advantages for Paleolithic hunters, reducing the likelihood of injury and increasing prey breadth  — .
In the Late Pleistocene, complex projectiles such as the bow-and-arrow probably contributed to the technological advantage enabling Homo sapiens to expand out of Africa and outcompete Neanderthals . In addition, the stratigraphic placement of the studied artefacts from Kathu Pan relative to the dated layers remains as yet controversial. These were initially described as ranged weapons, but it has not been possible to definitively identify their mode of delivery  , .
The identification of prehistoric projectile weaponry has been largely inferential. Paleolithic archaeologists suggest that mechanically-projected weapons, such as the bow-and-arrow, originated among modern humans in Africa ca.
Archaeologists Find Pre-Clovis Projectile Points in Texas
This is a medium to large lanceolate point with an elliptical cross section. Some examples have a median ridge. The blade is excurvate, curving out at the tip and with parallel edges.
projectile points — and let me tell you, things are an absolute mess. a book on the shelf when we had to try to identify a point to date a site.
Ripley P. Bullen collected information about Florida Projectile Points from avocational and professional archaeologists for decades. First presenting his typology in the s, this work was meant as a starting point to understand stone tool types that could be refined and built upon through the years See Bullen History. This illustrated version is something both groups have shown an interest in for years and why we have photographed each of the over projectile points that have come to be referred to as the Bullen Projectile Point Type Collection.
We hope this highly-sought-after resource will be of use. It is not meant to be a treatise on the state of stone tool typology but rather a simple reference tool for comparative research and researchers.
Projectile Point Typology and Dating
Evidence from the Cooper’s Ferry archaeological site in Western Idaho shows that people lived in the Columbia River Basin around 16, years ago. That’s well before a corridor between ice sheets opened up, clearing an inland route south from the Bering land bridge. That suggests that people migrated south along the Pacific coast.
Stone tools from the site suggest a possible connection between these first Americans and Northeast Asian hunter-gatherers from the same period. A piece of charcoal unearthed in the lowest layer of sediment that contains artifacts is between 15, and 15, years old, according to radiocarbon dating.
Paleoindian projectile points occur in high numbers in the American of Clovis points from archaeological sites with buried, dated contexts to.
For the past 2. Rock has been our friend! Projectile points and stone tools are great ways to see how cultures have changed over time and to pinpoint who was at a particular archaeological site at a given time. Odds are that where there were people, there were projectile points, more commonly known as arrowheads.
As cultures evolve, so too does the material, shape, style and use of their stone tools, making them a great way for archaeologists to track cultural shifts and evolutions. Our fair state has played a pivotal role in the tracking, dating and discovery of projectile points. New Mexico is the namesake for two of the most famous types of projectile point cultures found on this continent. The Clovis and the Folsom cultures dominated stone tool making in North America for about 4, years, give or take a couple of centuries.
These projectile points were the first used by Paleo-Indian hunters to take down their mammoth, bison antiquus and other giant, now extinct, prey. Clovis points were first discovered in by year-old Ridgely Whiteman in the Black Water Draw, a small often dry creek bed in Clovis. These projectile points were in close association with all kinds of big extinct animals: sloths, dire wolves, camels and horses. Many of these animals are no longer with us, or had disappeared from this side of the world until contact brought them back home.