Help Identifying Native American artifact

Discussion in 'Indian Arrowhead - Artifacts & Fossils' started by Jayhawk82, Aug 15, 2016.

  1. Jayhawk82

    Jayhawk82 New Member

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    Found in a box of native American artifacts including arrow heads and war clubs at an estate auction in North Dakota. Looks to be polished quartz and is 4 inches long. The shape is of a bird with a hole drilled for the eye. Any information on who could have carved it and the time period would be appreciated.
     
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  2. Out4gold

    Out4gold Active Member

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    This was a happenstance.
    The item you found in the box is "tumble/polished" in modern times.
    It is not an artifact by any measure.
    Agate is quite often polished in this method because of the nature/beauty of the material.
    The hole is incidental.
    Any chance you could post some of the artifacts from the box?
    Artifacts along with fossils are my greatest passion, other than my spouse.

    Bone2stone
     
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  3. Orosurf

    Orosurf Well-Known Member

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    Looks like a piece of agate to me. I agree , hole is incidental.
     
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  4. mtbricky

    mtbricky Well-Known Member

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    I'm just not so sure of this one. I have seen MANY bird effigy stones and pipes that are very similar to this form. One pic I could not find is almost that exact shape. It could easily be a failed attempt. I have attached a few pics I took out of the Ohio archaeologist magazine of some different forms of bird effigies. I am sure I have seen many many more. For a case in point I also took a picture of a stone I found many years ago while hunting arrowheads (last two pics). It was different, but I never thought much of it and was never sure if it was man made or not. About six months ago I took it to an arrowhead show to get some help with an ID. A collector offered me $100.00 - on the spot no questions asked. Turns out it is a preform for a notched ovate bannerstone - which is pretty rare.
     

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  5. mtbricky

    mtbricky Well-Known Member

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    First off I am not the original poster of this thread, so the original picture is not mine. Secondly the pictures I posted are not from the internet, they are from my library of past editions of the Ohio Archeologist published by the Ohio Archaeological Society of which I am a long time member. Thirdly the man that offered $100.00 is an expert with an extensive collection of artifacts who would not spend his money foolishly. I am not sure I understand all the animosity I am sensing in your post. Is it that hard to accept an opinion other than your own? I field hunted artifacts obsessively for 15 years when I was young enough, and although I could not have identified it as a preform, I've seen a million rocks, and that is enough to know that a piece of banded slate does not end up in that form in the middle of a corn field.

    As to your suggestion that I go to another site to post artifacts, I happen to like this site. I posted on the forum because nothing had been posted for some time. I just though I might get some discussion going. I guess since I am "dead wrong", maybe I should have saved myself the effort.
     
  6. Artie Fact

    Artie Fact Well-Known Member

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  7. Out4gold

    Out4gold Active Member

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    Well I deleted my last reply in favor of just to be more compliant with site rules.
    The first item, the Florida tumbled agate, is a gem and mineral show standard item.
    You can get them by the bags full at these gatherings.
    She at least gave us a size to compare to, but neglected to show more than one side in her post.
    That alone justified my reaction. Turned around and from other sides I'm pretty sure it would
    not resemble anything other than a pretty stone.
    At the very least her photo has very good resolution.

    The "bannerstone" just shows us a rock with a hole in it without anything to compare size.
    Your fuzzy picture is not good for making any judgement call so my original response to your reply was not justified.
    Better pictures and from different angles with outdoor lighting may be of great assistance.
    My call on that sucker that offered a hundred bucks, well if it is as you say he was trying to rip you off.

    Still I have doubts that yours is a "bannerstone" it does not have the form necessary to make that call.
    My background exceeds 50 years of authentication and training so I ask again that you post better pics so I can make a better call.
    Other wise it is still just a rock with a hole in it.

    Here is a picture of a stone I found recently that resembles a "birdstone" but it is not.
    When I posted it in an artifact site I got some unusual replies and some expected as well.
    But I, in no way, tried to make it anything more than what it is, a cool rock.

    IMG_2735(1).JPG image_26091.jpg
     
  8. mtbricky

    mtbricky Well-Known Member

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    I am not an expert nor am I an amateur.I can't really dispute the your opinion on the artifact in the original post though I can't rule out the possibility that it is an unfinished item unless I saw it in person. The point of my post is that sometimes unfinished artifacts are overlooked. The stone in your picture is nothing I've seen in nature. I can't see any distinguishing signs of how it was shped - by water, by another stone, or by a machine. If I saw evidence that it was formed and polished by another stone and it was reasonably patinated, I would conclude it was made by by ancient man. I would have a hard time concluding it was a pop eyed birdstone derivative, but everything ancient man made does not fit in to a nice neat category and there may have been a unique use for that one. It is a very interesting stone - my gut instinct is it's machine made. Is it fine grained igneous or sandstone?

    With regard to the artifact I posted, I would be happy to try to get some better pictures, but I wasn't really looking for anyone's opinion when I posted it. I am confidant enough in the opinion I already hold. Maybe you haven't seen a preform for a notched ovate bannerstone - few people have including myself. But several well regarded experts immediately recognized it as such. It is not a bannerstone - it is a preform for a bannerstone. Archaeologists consider these study pieces of some value. If I was offered $100.00 I assume it is worth something more than that. When I found it my hunting buddy always call it my "slate purse". Maybe all of the peck mark are not evident in the pictures but it is definitely not naturally occurring. I always though some innovative ancient artisan designed a hammerstone with a handle!
     
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  9. Out4gold

    Out4gold Active Member

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    You sound as if you are an educated well versed man.
    You must have studied after all you knew of the "Pop Eyed" effigy phenomenon.

    The stone I posted is only a suggestive conglomerate.
    Naturally occurring sandstone with calcite compounding as a cementing agent.
    Found in the Woodbine deposits in the midsection of the Dallas/Ft Worth area.
    I have plucked them directly from the shale strata in Bear Creek and elsewhere for years.
    Theses stones can sometimes be as large as a car, or as small as a June bug.
    I have many stones with suggestive shapes, that is the reason I retain them.
    I never tried to convince anyone that any of my rock specimens was more than what they truly are.

    The original agate is still an agate polished in modern times.
    I do not need to hold it, see it from other angles or photographed in any other lighting situation.

    This has been an interesting thread but has become quite repetitive.
    Thank you for making it worth posting.

    _______________________________________
    Quote: Bone2stone 1984
    "On the ground, it is only a rock"
    "But picked up and taken home, it becomes a specimen"
     
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  10. mtbricky

    mtbricky Well-Known Member

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    As time allows I'll try to post some of my finds. At least there will be something new to argue about!
     

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