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A new moral dilema

  1. May 8, 2009 #1
    Moving back to Battle Mountain reminded of a place I went when I was little to pick up arrowheads. The ground was absolutely covered with chips and broken arrowheads. I didn't think much about it when I was little, but I'll bet indians were using this spot for hundreds if not thousands of years. The people I've told about it say I shouldn't say anything because they don't want the land placed off limits to hunters and snow mobilers etc. Do you think a site like that would be of interest to an archeologist? I'm not a big outdoorsman so I think the historical value is more important than the recreational. What I don't know is whether sites like this are commonplace or if they are of interest to archeologists.
  2. jcsd
  3. May 8, 2009 #2
    There is a site like that in Utah, and the owners of the land kept it a secret for generations until a few years ago. I don't remember the details, but I think some hikers found it out let the secret out. Have to look up in the news.
  4. May 8, 2009 #3
    yeah, I saw a scientific american episode about that. That site was way different than this one. this is just a place where it looks like they sat around and made arrowheads all day long. there aren't living quarters or cave paintings or anything like that.
  5. May 8, 2009 #4
    I say let it be. There are enough arrowheads in museums, and collecting these artifacts and roping them off just has the effect of sucking the life out of them.
  6. May 8, 2009 #5
    It probably won't add anything new in textbooks, and whoever comes there would take stuff anyways. So I think it's better to keep it a secret.
  7. May 8, 2009 #6
    would an archeologist say that?
  8. May 8, 2009 #7
    It's true that there are dozens, hundreds of arrowhead sites, of Clovis, Folsom cultures etc. On the top of my head I think that the number of registered fluted points is something like 27,000. But yet it's rather unethical to keep this place a secret. There may be big new discoveries waiting, filling in a lot of blanks science it struggling with which may be lost forever if kept secret. It's not that science can claim the grounds and deny other use.

    Anyway I'm sure this thread is going to have Evo's undivided attention and of her friends, DrPaleo.
  9. May 8, 2009 #8


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    Perhaps you could select some examples that look representative? Then you could take them to an archaeologist or take pics of them and e-mail them about to see if there is any real interest. If there is none ... then hike in peace.

    Plus you have some curios from antiquity that holds memories for you.
  10. May 8, 2009 #9
    A quick look turned up alot of arrowhead sellers. If you make the location known you may just attract people looking to scrounge up as many artifacts as possible for sale. So if you do let it out you may want to be careful who you tell and how you tell them.
  11. May 8, 2009 #10
    Arrowheads are a dime a dozen. But the site may be of archeological interest in some larger context. What does a site like this indicate? Did a big tribe migrating from one place to another find a huge flint deposit here and stop for a month furiously making arrowheads for the rest of the trip, or is a fixed tribe's traditional flint napping area?
  12. May 10, 2009 #11
    I just spent the weekend four wheeling with my friends. I found arrowheads all over the place. Maybe that other spot isn't so special after all.
  13. May 10, 2009 #12


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    We have one of the US's most foremost archaeologists specializing in Clovis culture on this forum. DrPaleo, he usually only works sites he is sent to, but you could talk to him. Send him a PM.
  14. May 10, 2009 #13
    I really don't think this is Clovis. I'd say 99.9% sure. I'm not an archeologist, but there have been Indians in this area for thousands of years and some of them still live here, they aren't Clovis. DrPaleo would be able to give me an answer to my question though.
  15. May 11, 2009 #14
    Take some pictures and post them.
  16. Apr 25, 2011 #15
    I love arrowheads and I’m curious. Did you ever find out if they were Clovis arrowheads?
  17. Apr 25, 2011 #16
    I remember as a child seeing a vast collection of arrowheads that belonged to a farmer. He said that they came up every year when he plowed. He had lots of them displayed in glass frames, and lots more of them in boxes. He was making no secret of it, but this was 50 years ago. Perhaps he or his descendents regret displaying them now.
  18. Apr 25, 2011 #17
    My parents are grain farmers and every couple of years we find an arrow head that is brought to the surface from our equipment. One year they found a stone hammer with deep grooves where the ropes had been, it was pretty cool.
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