Mystery Metal Spear and Axe - Can someone ID these?

Tador

Jr. Member
Aug 17, 2010
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The spear and axe below were found in the 1970s by my father and uncle on a very remote hilltop in Southern Utah (near Bryce and Zion national parks) hidden under the roots of an old dead tree. Anyone have a guess as to their origin. I'm guessing either a late 19th or early 20th century blacksmith made them (and maybe his kid was out exploring and hid them) or they are Spanish, but I would welcome a more informed answer.

IMG_5337 (800x533).jpg
 

I don't have them in front of me to measure but I would guess about eight or nine inches long each.
 

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One more close-up of the other side to help identify these. I wonder if the greenish patina could mean there's copper in these.
IMG_5335 (800x533).jpg
 

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My guess the items are part of a weapon such as a lance or spear. It to me doesn't have a look of being Spanish or made for military use, such as what the Mexican lancers would have used during the Mexican-American war . If I was to guess, it was a lance constructed by a 19 century Mexican sheep herder for personal protection and threats to his herd? The lance had been a very widely used weapon in the old west going back to the Spanish conquest. All this is only my assumption as to what you truly have. I did find pleasure and interest in doing a little research on the use of a lance in the early times of the American west, such as the Mexican Ciboleros and some images of early lancers I find interesting. The 2nd fellow on the horse looks like he's out in the middle of southern Utah to me, but who really knows?. https://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/poc02
 

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Thank you

My guess the items are part of a weapon such as a lance or spear. It to me doesn't have a look of being Spanish or made for military use, such as what the Mexican lancers would have used during the Mexican-American war . If I was to guess, it was a lance constructed by a 19 century Mexican sheep herder for personal protection and threats to his herd? The lance had been a very widely used weapon in the old west going back to the Spanish conquest. All this is only my assumption as to what you truly have. I did find pleasure and interest in doing a little research on the use of a lance in the early times of the American west, such as the Mexican Ciboleros and some images of early lancers I find interesting. The 2nd fellow on the horse looks like he's out in the middle of southern Utah to me, but who really knows?. https://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/poc02

Thanks for taking the time to research this Tamrock. Your Mexican sheep herder thought makes sense to me. The weapons do seem to be very crudely made and I know people were grazing sheep in the area in the not too distant past. I still wonder why they were left there?
 

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The spear and axe below were found in the 1970s by my father and uncle on a very remote hilltop in Southern Utah (near Bryce and Zion national parks) hidden under the roots of an old dead tree. Anyone have a guess as to their origin. I'm guessing either a late 19th or early 20th century blacksmith made them (and maybe his kid was out exploring and hid them) or they are Spanish, but I would welcome a more informed answer.

View attachment 1007362

The spear head is a type made for hunting, not defense, as it is barbed; Spanish and Mexican lances were leaf-shaped so that you could withdraw it easily. There have been barbed spear heads for warfare too, intending to be thrown and "stick" in the enemy so that is not a hard/fast rule.

Have you tested them with a magnet, to see if they are iron?
Oroblanco
 

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The spear head is a type made for hunting, not defense, as it is barbed; Spanish and Mexican lances were leaf-shaped so that you could withdraw it easily. There have been barbed spear heads for warfare too, intending to be thrown and "stick" in the enemy so that is not a hard/fast rule.

Have you tested them with a magnet, to see if they are iron?
Oroblanco

I haven't had the chance test with a magnet, but I'll do that the next chance I get.
 

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The bottom one reminds me of the working end of a harrow used for working the dirt behind a garden plow, and the top one reminds me of the wedge that my grandfather used to have me use to spit the logs for the wood stove. I have no clue, that is just what they look like to me. Neat finds though still!
 

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iron in runoff from copper mines often shows greenish patina.

in the old copper mines the acid copper laden mine water will replace iron or steel with copper.

i have a slice of old mine rail that half the iron is gone and replaced with copper.
 

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It also has a crude way of attaching to the spear shaft,much like Native American spear heads.Usually its a socket mount set up that the spear head has.
 

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