Lots of threads started here are once and done. This one in particular will likely be updated quite a few times. Many artifact hunters and amateur archaeologists would not have made it far with out each others help. And so in keeping with this spirit, I have long planned to share some of my best sites with others. Below please find a fairly full list of just that-My best artifact sites from well over a century of collective knowledge of the North east.
Shoey, Schuylkill river
Berne bridge, Shoey
Linebach & Rickenbacher road
Willow hollow golf course
W. Leesport behind nurse
Howard Kline farm stead
Rt 222 & 73 willow creek
Mertztown area farm land
Halipins cider mill area
Muddy creek road, Oley
Little lehigh, Mertztown
Cold spring area farms
Northkill creek auction
Dreibelbis farm stead
Hill road in W. hamburg
Mabel Bolig farm stead
Leesport market farms
Mano Burkholder farm
Potato farm near Leesport
Dublin green jasper
Kutztown near water tower
Willow creek site 1/95
The old barn on this site is decaying rapidly. The barn has limestone gable- ends with beveled slots. The beveled slots lead me to believe they were used for rifles, instead of crop drying.
The east end of the barn has white granite stone near the top bearing the name Stanley Kirby and the date 1831.
Mabel Bolig Farm
98′ Found perfect gray Jasper triangle at Kutztown water tower. May likely have been Onandaga chert mix.
98′ Gary found yellow Jasper point, 2″ inch on potato farm.
98′ Howard Kline was the site of Arch. dig. No major finds by team. Much nice chalcedony found on this farm. (field next to large UGI. storage tank Rt 222-422)
Along with cooler weather in beautiful Berks County came some really great finds at a favorite spot, all within this past week. The typology and dispersion took me somewhat by surprise. But here we have a finely worked Scarem typed Madison in progress in dark red Jasper, with tip damage, and a perfect Neville typed Susquehanna broad in thick quartzite. I relate this typology from nearly forgotten tribal documentation that must be saved for another time. For reference I was led to each in less than ten minutes. Happy hunting to every one for the remainder of 2014!
LinkIng quarry to work shop
More recently our ventures have taken us to a quarry work shop area within 500 feet of noted ancient Jasper ceremonial and stone pits where Vera Cruz Jasper was removed for trading and inter-tribal use. In this respect, we can confirm more common typology in quartzite and other flints especially important for survival and over all durability as is often found at settlements of larger numbers. And so locating finished lithics consisting of Jasper in it’s various forms is desired for the sake of affirming the pre Archaic and paleo time periods these ancient quarry workers would have lived and hunted in this area. As shown below, we can happily confirm a number of such finds in 2014 that complete nearly 8 years of mapping these quarry sites for the purpose of linking ancient heritage to more well known tribal affiliations, And our body of knowledge.
As two good examples, Note the bird point/ Woodland period triangle above And the ancient larger paleo blade both found at the same settlement.
Last year was an amazing time for our expeditions into local quarry sites and workshop areas. We had an opportunity to take advantage of unfettered access to an unknown quarry site we have been casing since 2006.
Aside from the numerous ceremonial artifacts found at this site- We were able to note a significant operation taken in Ancient times for the gathering and preparation of a variety of lithic materials- Most notably Jasper stone. This site, situation on 3-5 acres of beautiful land in the Topton, PA area, is only one example of the thousands of quarry sites scattered around Pennsylvania.
This particular site we have come to call Site C. Very few finished lithics were found here. And those documented were in particular overwhelmingly oriented for use in quarry operations. After all the geography of the area and the nature of Jasper in it’s natural form required a significant settlement at the site and in surrounding areas to support the efficient removal of stone. Many large boulders of Jasper and composite material were found here. As well as a significant amount of ceremonial effigies in stone.
In consideration of the reverence we have for these sites and our own desire to improve our collection We took the time near the end of last year to prepare for a more focused expedition- This time less than 500ft away.
This fairly well wraps up our time with Quarry operations at site C. Now on to the Workshop area!
As spring comes closer and brings with it a new season and a nice thaw- I have been taking some time to reflect on ceremony and the culture of some well known local tribes. Some collectors and artifact researchers have used such writing and descriptors involved in these ceremony to aid them in their quests. And so why not take some time to consider a short passage originally authored by Alfred A Knopf, in 1992, in a publication entitled America in 1492: The World of the Indian Peoples Before the Arrival of Columbus. And also frequently found in cultural research writing, often summarized, such as the enjoyable read Arts through Native Teachings that followed some years later. While I can do little to build on this text, I would like to note the directional attachments that the Lenape afforded. Both in this example and historically.
As often pictured with a traditional long house the Thanksgiving Ceremony is described from historical account. Here the Turtle faces the West, the Wolf the North, the Turkey the South, with the entrance at the East end.
The building represented the universe. The oval floor space was the turtle holding up the earth. On the posts were the carved faces of twelve spirits living in levels of the sky. The center post united people with the Creator, an ancient male figure sitting in heaven for all eternity and controlling the world by his thoughts.
I like to keep accounts like this fresh in mind. And especially with a new season of exploring around the corner!
I am not sure if the word would sit well with every reader But finding such a beautiful face in Jasper and quartz crystal really is neat! This “Mountain” Lion face of an obvious cat was found as is at a private site near Lehigh County. As with some artifacts I’ve found this particular piece had a certain energy. Have since found some very similar items from this quarry area- As noted prehistoric, 10000 and older.
A quick no nonsense look at a very nice selection of sacred Nuh-Yah. Lots of quartz crystal inclusions in this one. My latest trip to a favorite site of mine has produced some of the most exotic Jasper stone I’ve come across yet.
Really nice spear point at our best Site A field. Is a tough going time of the year to pull out good points -But this one was not trying to hide. After about twenty minutes of walking along rows of winter wheat this sweet 2 1/4″ spotted black flint spear point was located right in a hoof print from a local white tail. Not only does this bring our count for this location to a rough twenty total points for 2013, But as seems to be the case in this wild we confirmed another great camp area close to a local spring and in the direct path of local wild game that has likely been using the area for water and traversal for some thousands of years. Great one Pop – Another one up for the stammnson’ team!
One topic I’d like to address is the terminology and general nature of a phrase I have coined, Vera Cruz Jasper. Often the issue comes about from an interested collector or artifact hunter inquiring about my personal collection of lithics. And the debate surrounding that phrase not surprisingly will frequently address the legality of hunting for this stone and composite lithics. There is a quick, not so quick, and long summary of this topic. The quick summary is that without discussing the geography of Jasper and Silica composite veins running through the Earth, the phrase is simply that-An honorable mention of the same composite material and Circa used in such amazing and popular attractions as one might find near Emmaus, PA., and the surrounding Lehigh County area. A more drawn out explanation is that I have a number of private, personally owned sites far from this area where enormous quantities of Jasper can be found in abundance, and in plain view. Many collectors from afar and a good number in my locale have little knowledge of these veins and run the risk of assuming such materials are highly localized, as in many states across the US they are. In Pennsylvania they simply are not. Jasper quarries and pits of ancient and undisturbed origin are a better descriptor for the general areas in which this material exists-Numbering in the thousands across Pennsylvania. And an even more geographically correct identifier for these veins is the somewhat forgotten But still very well known Reading Prong. In following with this understanding I can very happily acknowledge that Not one of my own sites is on or even near Federally protected, State Game, Native or Reserved land. Around this time is generally when I start to catch the attention of even seasoned hunters. Virtually all are quite unknown to the general public, very private, and produce an amazing variety of high quality Jasper.
As is often the case with terminology used in Artifact typology then it would follow that an appropriate phrase should include some distinction. For interested geologists and artifact hunters, This should be quite understandable. But I must affirm As I will highlight through forthcoming citations of century old texts, That the veins of these Silica composites running through Pennsylvania have indeed produced some of the highest quality Jasper in the world. And many such texts will confirm the dispersal of this material in raw and finished form throughout the United States from right here in good ol’ PA. I have had several friends from Tribal nations of notoriety and various stature confirm this throughout the years. I simply have a love and appreciation-Nay an adoration-for the stone itself, it’s soul and origins from the Creator. And as such I take a great pleasure in sharing the importance of the material itself to Natives in our area and across the country Who have their own ancient knowledge and appreciation for Mother Earth and these materials. My hope is that this phrase will soon be recognized for the reverence I have come to have for this beautiful material and the high quality nature of Jasper stone produced here.