Odd shaped piece of what I think is obsidian.

Jul 7, 2020
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Found this in a dump a little while ago. Originally thought it was a piece of coal. Could tell it was shaped and so I brought it home and after getting the dirt off I saw that (I think) it is obsidia. It is quite brittle
(a piece came off after I got it home) and is defiantly shaped. Tell me what you think it was.
 

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BAW

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Jul 19, 2020
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Looks to me like the tar coating off an old underground natural gas pipeline. Be careful - tar pipe wrap often contains asbestos fibers.
 
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OP
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Jul 7, 2020
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It really seems like obsidia. Might be a little hard to tell from the PCs but it seems right. I may be wrong though.
 
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BAW

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How hard is it? Could you break it with your fingers? Obsidian is as hard as glass. In fact chemically speaking it is glass.
 
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OP
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How hard is it? Could you break it with your fingers? Obsidian is as hard as glass. In fact chemically speaking it is glass.
It is pretty brittle. The piece next to it I acadently Broc off when I was getting the dirt of. Little pieces will come of as well it you rub it and put it dow kind of hard. It also scratches quite easily.
 
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Back-of-the-boat

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It could be a carbon rod from an old battery. IDK but to eliminate tar you could try and burn a small piece and see if it smells like tar. It is strange but I don't believe it is obsidian.
 
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kblackphoto

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Found this in a dump a little while ago. Originally thought it was a piece of coal. Could tell it was shaped and so I brought it home and after getting the dirt off I saw that (I think) it is obsidia. It is quite brittle
(a piece came off after I got it home) and is defiantly shaped. Tell me what you think it was.
hold it up to the light, most obsidian i have has a green hue on its edges. from the photos its hard to tell. it should be very glossy inside if you chip a piece off. most of mine have striations as well. I find it all the time here in NZ, mistaking it for thick pieces of sea glass in the bay areas.
 
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CaptEsteban

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I think much like " BAW ," does. On a flat roof, pipes, conduit, etc., penetrate the roof through a formed " cup," that is filled with tar or roofing cement. When that is removed, you will see chunks similar to what you have . A lighter will heat the tar & have that asphalt odor, IF this is what you have.

Foam-Insulation-Causing-Leak-Pound-Ridge-NY-Flat-Roof-Repair.jpg.webp
 
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OP
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Jul 7, 2020
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Here are some more pics. Might help a bit more. It does have a glassy look but you can’t really see it in the frost pics.
 

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OP
Vermont treasure hunter
Jul 7, 2020
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hold it up to the light, most obsidian i have has a green hue on its edges. from the photos its hard to tell. it should be very glossy inside if you chip a piece off. most of mine have striations as well. I find it all the time here in NZ, mistaking it for thick pieces of sea glass in the bay areas.
It is very glossy in places where it has chipped.
 
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Mason Jarr

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Here in ION (Idaho/Oregon/Nevada) corner region almost all the Native American tools are obsidian. Here's a few various pieces. I've also found huge slabs of obsidian the size of dinner plates. It almost always breaks in a thick to thin process. I have never seen a chunky piece of obsidian. And if you look closely at it, it's rarely smooth. There's usually little swirls and ridges on the surface.
 

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OP
Vermont treasure hunter
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Here in ION (Idaho/Oregon/Nevada) corner region almost all the Native American tools are obsidian. Here's a few various pieces. I've also found huge slabs of obsidian the size of dinner plates. It almost always breaks in a thick to thin process. I have never seen a chunky piece of obsidian. And if you look closely at it, it's rarely smooth. There's usually little swirls and ridges on the surface.
I doubt it is Native American because almost no obsidian artifacts have ever been found in Vermont.
 
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kblackphoto

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take it up to a local university to have someone look at it in the geology department. You never know what you could find. Just because something hasn't been found in areas before doesn't mean it's impossible to unearth something undiscovered to the region. The newer pictures you posted look more like it for sure.
 
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kblackphoto

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Here in ION (Idaho/Oregon/Nevada) corner region almost all the Native American tools are obsidian. Here's a few various pieces. I've also found huge slabs of obsidian the size of dinner plates. It almost always breaks in a thick to thin process. I have never seen a chunky piece of obsidian. And if you look closely at it, it's rarely smooth. There's usually little swirls and ridges on the surface.
I find big chunks often. more thick than thin. maybe it was found closer to where it originated perhaps
 
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Mason Jarr

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Possibly. Most of this area here is what's considered the Snake River Plains and geologically it was once a part of the Yellowstone caldera, but plate tectonics have moved it further to the west where it's at now. I know of a ridge near Twin Falls, Idaho that is almost entirely littered with large slabs of obsidian. All thin pieces.
 
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