Wednesday, July 29, 2020

Thursday, July 23, 2020

Finding Meaning in Stone

July 22, 2020 by Hannah Harvey - “Nothing excites the imagination like an unanswered question, and since spring I’ve been exploring a little-recognized mystery here in Pennsylvania…”

Clovis First dies again = Chiquihuite Cave

[About first Americans, not rock pile related]

Solid research about people in Mexico around 30K years ago. If accepted this will become another version of "Clovis First".  Archeologists cannot get enough of assuming a diminutive role for America in world pre-history.

Monday, July 13, 2020

Rhode Island Arrowheads

More finds from reader Joshua:

I have found quite a lot of artifacts in the past month or so including a brewerton eared triangle, possible resharpened clovis point made from quartzite that measures just over an inch in length, a frost island point made from black rhyolite with porphyritic quartz specks, a large point made from felsite or some other material that has been ground down in two places to be used as a spokeshave.  Also is an argillite piedmont I think and another old argillite spearpoint as well as a small quartz lamoka point and a really old spearpoint made from blue gray serpentine stone. It has a knick or spur on one of the basal edges so I think it might be a stringtown lanceolate.  It's heavily beveled to the point where it seems to twist slightly and the only tools I see at this site made from serpentine are paleo tools and paleo artifacts such as birdstones.  I included a photo of the spearpoint with other paleo artifacts to show that they are all made from serpentine. Also included is a photo of some recent broken points including a neville point made from very unique material, a rhyolite palmer I think and a quartz point that I keyed out to jim thorpe but am not sure. All of these artifacts were collected at the same site that I believe is very old site dating back to the clovis era and possibly pre-clovis times facing narragansett bay.   Thank you for any and all help.  

[from a second email]
. . . plus an interesting piece of what i think is art made from orthoquartzite (sandstone).  It's ground down in certain areas to make certain planes and shapes.

Tuesday, July 07, 2020

Aundré Bumgardner Photos (Glastonbury, CT)

   Some photos of some beautiful “Stone Prayers” taken by Aundré Bumgardner  in Glastonbury, CT.

Dogs can detect burials up to 5K years old

I have written several times that dogs seem to like to sit on top of stone mounds. There is lots of photo evidence. They don't seek out boulders to stand on - so the preference is not about getting a view out over the landscape.

So I always wondered if dogs smelled something (you human remains) and how long after burial would something still have a detectable smell for a dog. Well, apparently the burial age can be up to 5 thousand years - more than enough to encompass the large stone mounds of our last 2 thousand years

(from the Atlantic)

(past references to dogs on rock piles)

Monday, July 06, 2020

Mayans in Georgia

Thought I would browse this YouTube, to recall the controversy.

I don't remember if readers are ok with the idea of Mayans in Georgia, or want to make fun of it. The videographer Scott Wolter is easy to make fun of. But the rock piles and stone walls are real. So permit me to take a position on the idea that there were "Mayans" in North America.

I believe that mound building cultures dominated America for most of the last 2 thousand years. We are told that the earliest mound sites (eg "Poverty Point") are in southern US and predate Adena Mounds in the Mississippi as well as Olmec pyramids in Mexico. (I just looked it up, the Olmec were 1200 BC and Poverty Point is 1100 BC, so actually US sites are contemporaneous with oldest central American ones). They were building monuments all around the Caribbean at that time - for example the Caddo mounds in Texas.

In addition to the timing and architecture being connected between cultures of central and north America, it is clear [to me] that the basic cultures were a bit homogenous all over the Americas, in general. You look at a Mayan arrowhead [hard to find pictures of them] and it is the same as an arrowhead from the Mississippian mound building cultures of later years.

Pre-classic Mayan:


I have one of these arrowhead. I found it in Arizona at a "Sinagua" site - a pre-Anasazi, Puebloan people. What this tells me is that there was a culture that was pan-American with many local variations of the common theme. And they built mounds in the north and in the south. In the river valleys and alluvial deltas, they built in dirt. In the rocky highlands they built from stone. 

Everyone was building mounds and everyone was building terraces and everyone was making the same sort of arrowhead. It would not be surprising if an Indian from the north east could have been intelligible to one from Mississippi using a shared "trade language". I propose that mound building cultures were all similar and all shared some common behaviors and beliefs. These include not only mounds and arrowheads but also foods. The "three sisters" of corn, beans, and squash did not get to New England by coincidence but through trade and a continuity of cultures. Another example is the "4 color" division of: black, white, yellow, and red -corresponding with compass directions.

So why are we creating a false sense of separation between the Mayans and the Indians of Georgia? Of course the Mayan culture was present in Georgia. But those Indians should be called "Georgians". To make fun of this idea is to ignore the obvious cultural continuity that, I believe, stretched from Canada to Peru. You can make fun of it. You can argue about timing and the difference between when the Adena were in the Mississippi valley versus the Mayans in central America. But you have to make arbitrary distinctions to do it. Every place from Mexico to Massachusetts had examples of the same cultures.