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Thread: Shore finds

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  1. #1
    us
    Feb 2018
    New England
    76
    39 times
    Native American artifacts

    Shore finds

    Think I have a possible shaft abrader and scraper here. I am not able to identify the stone that this scraper is made from and whether or not it is broken. It is a very smooth stone with a tiny edge. Also found a hunk of quartz that I believe is the broken off end of a tool. Please tell me what you see. Thanks!
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    sandchip, dts52 and Charl like this.

  2. #2
    us
    the boss

    Mar 2008
    south dakota
    good eyes
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    I don't see a shaft abrader there anywhere, but I love the fine edge-work on that utilized flake or scraper!
    1320 and Wandermore91 like this.

  3. #3
    us
    Feb 2018
    New England
    76
    39 times
    Native American artifacts
    Quote Originally Posted by quito View Post
    I don't see a shaft abrader there anywhere, but I love the fine edge-work on that utilized flake or scraper!
    Does the notch in it look man made to you? Is it possible that it could be a broken piece of something else? Thank you

  4. #4
    us
    Jan 2012
    Rhode Island
    2,301
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    Relic Hunting
    You took a great closeup of the edge on the flake tool. I believe the material is one of our regional rhyolites. If you wind up getting Boudreau's expanded typology from the Massachusetts Archaeological Society, there is a good section showing many of our regional rhyolites and other lithics.

    Yes, I do think the quartz is artifactual. Maybe something that broke in manufacturing.

    The other stone looks natural to me. I saw you posted it to your hammerstone thread before seeing it here. I don't believe it is water worn pecking in this instance.
    Wandermore91 likes this.

  5. #5
    us
    Jan 2012
    Rhode Island
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    Relic Hunting
    BTW, the little flake tool is not broken. Many small scrapers and tools were simply made off of flakes, which looks like the case here. You will even find points at times that were made off of a flake.

  6. #6
    Charter Member
    us
    Nov 2012
    Maryland
    XP Deus, Tesoro Cibola
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    I have another idea on the grey flint item. And it does look like imported flint. Belgian and some English flint has this color. How about a flint from an early musket? They were shaped like this, nothing on one end and the other end would be just like yours and have the front edge only finely worked. I found one almost exactly like it in Maryland in the 1960s and still have it.
    Wandermore91 likes this.

  7. #7
    us
    Jan 2012
    Rhode Island
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    Relic Hunting
    smokeythecat is suggesting a D shaped gun spall. It does resemble one at that. It also resembles a flake scraper.

    Various gun spalls and gun flints:
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    And here is a jasper flake scraper from one of the fields I walk:

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    The answer might depend on the material. I'm not sure. I have found one gun spall and one gun flint, but don't have a lot of experience with them. And the material might be flint, not rhyolite. I am not familiar with the British flints, but the gun flints made from them are much darker in color then your's. At least the ones I am familiar with. French flint was also used for gun flints.

    Here is a British gun flint I found on Narragansett Bay. This could be as late as the 19th century:

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    I like smokeythecat's idea, but don't really have the experience to make the call. But the second illustration of gun spalls/gun flints above do look similar. My jasper piece, on the other hand, is a native tool....
    Last edited by Charl; Mar 13, 2018 at 05:42 PM.
    Wandermore91 likes this.

  8. #8
    us
    Jan 2012
    Rhode Island
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    Relic Hunting
    A D shaped gun spall made of European flint would be a nice find in my book. Gun spalls are older then gun flints, so it could be Contact Era, or as early as the 1600's, which would be very cool.
    Wandermore91 likes this.

  9. #9
    us
    Feb 2018
    New England
    76
    39 times
    Native American artifacts

    Shore finds

    WOW. This is almost too much for me to wrap my newb head around!! And way too cool. I guess my little treasure spot holds more history than I ever thought...

    I looked into the different stones you guys suggested. Charl, I am pretty sure that this is not rhyolite and I did a quick search but the textures just donít seem the same. This piece is unlike any stone Iíve seen before which means the theory that it is not from here could make a lot of sense. My first impression upon picking it up was how strange it was, I didnít even think it was a stone, it was so incredibly smooth but also very hard and dull. Just seemed foreign from the get-go.

    I googled European flint, like smokeythecat suggested and immediately recognized it. I am almost positive this is the stone I have. The white splotches and black ďfrecklesĒ (sorry, Iím sure these are not correct geology terms and some of you are probably cringing) in this stone really stand out to me, and I notice the European flint has them. I will post the pictures I looked at. A friend of mine had his own theory. He said ďI think your site may have been a major village or trading post during the contact period. It may have been a place where European travelers/settlers met with and traded with the NAs. That flint fell out of someone's pocket or pouch. And may have been made in England.Ē This is along the lines of what you guys are saying, is it plausible?
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    The bottom left one looks almost identical to the one I found, except the top edge of mine is not worn and is nearly perfectly straight.. are these crooked edges pictured here from use?
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    Characteristics of European flint are a match!

    Also.. I feel that I should have posted a picture of the back of this piece, since it has a very distinct, rippled chip (dare I use the term, ďconchoidal fractureĒ!?) in it that could be a big hint when identifying it.. Sorry!
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    Thanks for helping me put the pieces together everyone! I never would have considered that this could be from a musket! Incredible.. With this being established, does anyone have any tips on how I should go about exploring this site further? Thanks!
    Last edited by Wandermore91; Mar 14, 2018 at 12:47 AM.

  10. #10
    us
    Feb 2018
    New England
    76
    39 times
    Native American artifacts

    Shore finds

    Your finds are really cool as well Charl, interesting to know that you found these not too far away. The pieces of the puzzle all seem to fit. If history class was this exciting I may have paid more attention, ha! The expanded typology book is one of the ones I did recently order, and I cannot wait to receive and dive into it. Seems like an amazing book and Iím so eager to learn all I can from it.
    Last edited by Wandermore91; Mar 14, 2018 at 12:37 AM.

  11. #11
    us
    Jan 2012
    Rhode Island
    2,301
    2574 times
    Relic Hunting
    Your piece isn't entirely unlike rhyolite. I was thinking Marblehead rhyolite, but your piece also looks glossy, and few rhyolites will be glossy. We also have various Hudson Valley cherts that show up in our region. All that said, it does look like a D shaped gun spall. The natives used both European made gun spalls/flints and they also manufactured their own. Your piece would be European made, however. It does not have to be native associated; it could be settler related. But I do not know the site you are finding your recoveries on, you know that best and are in a better position to make the call as you get to know the site.

    Here is the only other such find I have, a square gun spall, also called a rectangular gun spall. An expert in the subject suggested 1750-1850 for this. I did find it on a site that is 95% Late Woodland, with mostly quartz Levanna and quartz Madison points. Also found an 18th Century kaolin pipe fragment. 17th Century blockhouse and trading post nearby, and I do believe the site was occupied when the first settlers moved into the town just a stone throws distant.

    At any rate, here is an example of a European made square gun spall. And BTW, the book you ordered by my late friend and colleague, Jeff Boudreau is one of the very best regional guides in print now, and will be the Bible on the subject for our region for years to come. You will also want to pick up the MAS guide to artifacts from southern New England to serve as a great guide to artifacts other then projectile points....

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    Wandermore91 likes this.

  12. #12
    Charter Member
    us
    Nov 2012
    Maryland
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    Here's one I found at a site that was gone by 1790. I think it's Belgian flint. Place was established by 1680 or so. Click image for larger version. 

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    Wandermore91 likes this.

  13. #13
    us
    Feb 2018
    New England
    76
    39 times
    Native American artifacts
    Quote Originally Posted by smokeythecat View Post
    Here's one I found at a site that was gone by 1790. I think it's Belgian flint. Place was established by 1680 or so. Click image for larger version. 

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    Wow, much like mine 🏼 I canít seem to find too many of these online. Is it considered a rare find? If so, just how rare? Just curious! I plan on keeping it forever just as you have! Thanks!

  14. #14
    us
    Feb 2018
    New England
    76
    39 times
    Native American artifacts

    Shore finds

    Also, how come some of these pieces are taller, and others shorter and wider? I donít quite understand the mechanisms behind the musket, I get what the flint does but not quite how it does it. Is there a way to tell if the one I have is used or not? Many of the reference photos seem to have millimeters more length going opposite the ďDĒ curve. Just an observation, but one Iím curious about.

    Is it possible this was traded to the natives and they used it as a scraper?
    Last edited by Wandermore91; Mar 14, 2018 at 09:16 AM.

  15. #15
    us
    Feb 2018
    New England
    76
    39 times
    Native American artifacts

    Shore finds

    Quote Originally Posted by Charl View Post
    Your piece isn't entirely unlike rhyolite. I was thinking Marblehead rhyolite, but your piece also looks glossy, and few rhyolites will be glossy. We also have various Hudson Valley cherts that show up in our region. All that said, it does look like a D shaped gun spall. The natives used both European made gun spalls/flints and they also manufactured their own. Your piece would be European made, however. It does not have to be native associated; it could be settler related. But I do not know the site you are finding your recoveries on, you know that best and are in a better position to make the call as you get to know the site.

    Here is the only other such find I have, a square gun spall, also called a rectangular gun spall. An expert in the subject suggested 1750-1850 for this. I did find it on a site that is 95% Late Woodland, with mostly quartz Levanna and quartz Madison points. Also found an 18th Century kaolin pipe fragment. 17th Century blockhouse and trading post nearby, and I do believe the site was occupied when the first settlers moved into the town just a stone throws distant.

    At any rate, here is an example of a European made square gun spall. And BTW, the book you ordered by my late friend and colleague, Jeff Boudreau is one of the very best regional guides in print now, and will be the Bible on the subject for our region for years to come. You will also want to pick up the MAS guide to artifacts from southern New England to serve as a great guide to artifacts other then projectile points....
    Very nice pieces Charl. Imagine if ours came over on the same ship! Now that would be something. Thanks for the lesson. I found this in the same area where a couple of the net weights came from. Within a few feet, actually. Lots of what Iím finding is from that one site. Just when I started to think I had cleaned it out...

 

 
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