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  1. #16
    us
    Jun 2009
    Central Pennsylvania
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    Paleoindian-Early Archaic tools
    FWIW

    the most important diagnostic feature of a base fractured by removal of two flakes inward across the base
    From both corner edges after preliminary corner removals plus center notching. However, when the first removal runs completely across the edge of the base to the other corner, as sometimes happened, the result is one continuous tranchet flake surface, as willjo's example seems to show.

    Add to this that in willjo's example, both notches appear to have been created (finished) by similar tranchet flake procedure (twice on one side, once on the other).

    Both of these are Decatur procedures, distinguishing their work from that of other contemporary and later corner notches at a glance. Deliberate tranchet flaking is not their most important diagnostic feature -- it is their only diagnostic feature. Otherwise Decatur points show the same variation in notch angles, notching depth and blade shape (100% a matter of beginning width available and degree of resharpening) as other, contemporary points show over time and space.

    The Early Archaic people got around to an extent that seems to surpass even Paleo people. E.g., Gary Fogelman finding a trade black of red & cream Paoli chert from Kentucky at the Warrior Springs site in Northumberland Co., Pennsylvania. Dick Savage (this is merely stuff found by people I know or knew, and saw personally) finding a large, ace-of-spades Decatur of bullseye hornstone (Dongala ?) in Union Co. Pa. and a friend of his finding a type 3 Hardaway of silicified tuff (North Carolina) at the forks of the Susquehanna River. For that matter, Early Archaic cornernotches of Blue Coshocton (Ohio) are commonly enough found around Lancaster and Eastern Pa. that it's a familiar lithic.

    The all-time distance champ I've seen was a Scottsbluff of Hixton that GF got out of a farm collection from NE Pa., years ago.

    Again, FWIW. Nobody -- me included -- knows it all, or pretends to.
    MAMucker likes this.
    "[T]o silence a man is to pay him homage, for it is an acknowledgement that his arguments are both impossible to answer and impossible to ignore." -- JBR Yant

    "Take heart from Noam Chomsky, who wrote that nothing in the social sciences cannot be understood by the average bus driver in a couple of minutes this is not calculus or physics, after all." -- Ramin Mazaheri

  2. #17
    us
    Oct 2010
    Georgia
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    Quote Originally Posted by uniface View Post
    ...However, when the first removal runs completely across the edge of the base to the other corner, as sometimes happened, the result is one continuous tranchet flake surface, as willjo's example seems to show...
    If I could see the flake removed across the base that you mentioned, we wouldn't be having this debate in the first place. I simply don't see it, even after going back numerous times and zooming in on the edge shots of the base. Maybe I'm just going blind...
    Tdog likes this.

  3. #18
    us
    Apr 2017
    south east kansas
    Whites Eagle Spectrum
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    The discussion is good for me I appreciate the extra info, I wasnt aware of that kind of manufacturing technique.

  4. #19
    us
    Banjo Man

    May 2019
    East Central Alabama
    1,331
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    Relic Hunting
    I understand there are many types in this Kirk Corner Notched cluster with all having many of the same characteristics and not to make excuses but sometimes, it is difficult to differentiate one from the other. I've returned to this thread several times trying to understand what I'm seeing (or in this case, what I'm not seeing). I've always thought a Decatur's base will have a notch-like appearance in the center because of the way it's been fractured from each corner via what I now understand is tranchet flake removal. I didn't take into consideration that one flake removal could travel all the way across the base and a subsequent flake removal was not necessary. Also, it seems that grinding can sometimes mask all the steps it took to create the base. This piece had a Decatur appearance at first glance to me but like sandchip, I couldn't see it and in my case, didn't know what I was looking at. Anyway, enough rambling and I stand corrected on my typology ID. Thank you Mr. Bill (uniface) for pointing out these things.
    MAMucker likes this.

    Savant Banjo Picker

  5. #20
    us
    Jun 2009
    Central Pennsylvania
    2,043
    732 times
    Paleoindian-Early Archaic tools
    No harm, no foul !

    What makes Early Archaic cornernotches in the East/Southeast Central USA so interesting, IMHO, is that they're a can of worms.

    There are how many different basal configurations found on Dovetails alone ? Five or six (faulty memory) ? And if you cataloged them, how many base/notching varieties of Thebes points ?

    It seems that with those clusters, Plevna (Dovetails) in particular, they often began as semi-finished bifaces that were traded over a wide area, and finished by locals to individual taste, but the same basic point.

    And that pattern holds true with the smaller, individual types as well. How many varieties of Bolens are there ?

    A Pine Tree is distinguished from the generic Kirk cornernotch largely by the way it was re-sharpened. But in Kentucky there are large, carefully made, serrated (like Pine Trees often are) cornernotches (frequently abandoned after their bases snapped) that are "Kirks" only because, while unlike the usual ones, there's no other name for them.

    The usual Kirk CN does not have ground bases/notches. But some do. Most have symmetrical notches. But some are asymmetrical.

    A Kirk with a tranchet flaked basal edge (and often some of the notching) is Decatur. Which does not rule out the existence of Decaturs with unfinished bases.

    A small, thick(ish) cornernotch with large serrations when not modified (reduced/removed) by resharpening will likely be a Palmer, and very early. A slightly larger one, similar but highly arched on one side and flattish on the bottom (plano-convex) will be a Charleston. Both will ordinarily show chevron flaking that developed in the course of resharpening.

    Nearly the same point, but generally larger and thin, will be a Pine Tree, and from later in time.

    Add that distinguishing a Type Three Hardaway from a small Thebes from a Cache River can boil down to where it was found and what it was made of. Toss in San Patrice if you want extra confusion.

    Needless to say, informed opinions can, and do (as here) vary -- especially in the case of hybrids.

    With Decatur, small notches were put on the basal corners and a third at the midpoint of the basal edge. This midpoint notch was the target the tranchet flakes from the corners aimed at. When all went as planned, the result was a straight basal edge with a little, residual center notch. But look at enough of them and you'll notice cases where these finishing removals took off an unintended angles, resulting in an unsymmetrical, V-shaped edge. Occasionally though, the first tranchet removal carried across the whole edge (we're only talking about maybe an inch), making it difficult to distinguish from a point improvised out of a preform with a square edge.

    And just to keep things interesting for later people trying to get a handle on this typology business, there are points with deeply concave bases that were squared off only at the very corners. (Why even bother ?)

    Add the many named types not mentioned here (some widely distributed, some local but distinctive) and you have a three ring circus.

    The neat part is that this can stimulate discussion.
    Last edited by uniface; Aug 01, 2020 at 12:15 PM.
    Tdog likes this.
    "[T]o silence a man is to pay him homage, for it is an acknowledgement that his arguments are both impossible to answer and impossible to ignore." -- JBR Yant

    "Take heart from Noam Chomsky, who wrote that nothing in the social sciences cannot be understood by the average bus driver in a couple of minutes this is not calculus or physics, after all." -- Ramin Mazaheri

  6. #21
    us
    Oct 2010
    Georgia
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    Quote Originally Posted by uniface View Post
    ...The neat part is that this can stimulate discussion.
    Begging willjo's forgiveness, but here's another unusual one for more stimulation or discussion or whatever. This is one of the very first points I found. It's off the place where I was born and raised and still have my business, on the edge of a small town in west central Georgia. I found it while Daddy and I were walking a fire break on the high side of a small, intermittent creek. About all that's ever been found on this property and believe me, I've looked and still do. Very, very little flint to be found. I'm gonna turn it over to you guys and see where it goes, this fractured base Bolen Plain, or too small, far from home Snyders, or Decatur because of the tranchet flake removed across the base regardless of the point's outline. I know little to nothing about chert and flint types. Perhaps that might give some insight to its origin to those who know their rocks. Circled are the only areas that appear to be modern damage. The patina in the larger pock seems to be the same as the rest of the point. Thanks, everyone for tolerating me.

    Will have to load the pics in separate posts. Won't let me post them all at once anymore.
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    uniface and willjo like this.

  7. #22
    us
    Oct 2010
    Georgia
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    More pics.
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    uniface likes this.

  8. #23
    us
    Oct 2010
    Georgia
    Teknetics T2SE
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    ...and more.
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    uniface and willjo like this.

  9. #24
    us
    Banjo Man

    May 2019
    East Central Alabama
    1,331
    1979 times
    Relic Hunting

    Savant Banjo Picker

  10. #25
    us
    Jun 2009
    Central Pennsylvania
    2,043
    732 times
    Paleoindian-Early Archaic tools
    Nice point !

    That edge looks exactly like the way paleo platters were split in two : a blow starts the seperation running at an angle (maybe 45 degrees) and it rotates quickly as it runs to 90 degrees.
    sandchip likes this.
    "[T]o silence a man is to pay him homage, for it is an acknowledgement that his arguments are both impossible to answer and impossible to ignore." -- JBR Yant

    "Take heart from Noam Chomsky, who wrote that nothing in the social sciences cannot be understood by the average bus driver in a couple of minutes this is not calculus or physics, after all." -- Ramin Mazaheri

  11. #26
    us
    Banjo Man

    May 2019
    East Central Alabama
    1,331
    1979 times
    Relic Hunting
    So are you saying that flat edge at the base was that way on the preform and is not a tranchet flake removal?

    Savant Banjo Picker

  12. #27
    us
    Jun 2009
    Central Pennsylvania
    2,043
    732 times
    Paleoindian-Early Archaic tools
    I don't know, Terry -- I can't tell from the photo.
    "[T]o silence a man is to pay him homage, for it is an acknowledgement that his arguments are both impossible to answer and impossible to ignore." -- JBR Yant

    "Take heart from Noam Chomsky, who wrote that nothing in the social sciences cannot be understood by the average bus driver in a couple of minutes this is not calculus or physics, after all." -- Ramin Mazaheri

  13. #28
    us
    retired

    Apr 2015
    Twin City, Ga.
    Garrett GTA 350 and Garrett ace 150
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    1809 times
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    Quote Originally Posted by sandchip View Post
    Begging willjo's forgiveness, but here's another unusual one for more stimulation or discussion or whatever. This is one of the very first points I found. It's off the place where I was born and raised and still have my business, on the edge of a small town in west central Georgia. I found it while Daddy and I were walking a fire break on the high side of a small, intermittent creek. About all that's ever been found on this property and believe me, I've looked and still do. Very, very little flint to be found. I'm gonna turn it over to you guys and see where it goes, this fractured base Bolen Plain, or too small, far from home Snyders, or Decatur because of the tranchet flake removed across the base regardless of the point's outline. I know little to nothing about chert and flint types. Perhaps that might give some insight to its origin to those who know their rocks. Circled are the only areas that appear to be modern damage. The patina in the larger pock seems to be the same as the rest of the point. Thanks, everyone for tolerating me.

    Will have to load the pics in separate posts. Won't let me post them all at once anymore.
    Don't worry about me i like the point
    sandchip likes this.

  14. #29

    Dec 2018
    142
    296 times
    All Types Of Treasure Hunting
    I'm not following the thought process on the decatur. I see no indication of a fractured base decatur. It does appear to be an early archaic corner notched knife form, so kirk, lost lake type stuff, but can't tell with the ears broken off like that. The blown out areas around the notches are the result of punch notching. A hard piece of antler is ground into the shape of a flathead screwdriver. A small pressure flake is then taken to start the notch and create a platform for the punch. The punch is seated down into the notch, sticking straight up, so 90 degrees to the stone, them struck straight down, or ever so slightly out ward (away from the stone). This blows out a "C" shaped notch. If the platform is especially stout, or if the punch if placed higher up in the notch, it can blow out a lot of stone. The process is a bit scary, especially if you don't do it a lot! Most modern knappers don't mess with it too much because they have metal pressure flakes, but if you are trying to knap only using original materials, it is really the only way to mimic a lot of the old notching.
    Older The Better and uniface like this.

  15. #30
    us
    Apr 2017
    south east kansas
    Whites Eagle Spectrum
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    1898 times
    All Types Of Treasure Hunting
    Before this thread I thought I had a pretty good handle on stone tool manufacture. Im learning some good stuff.

 

 
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