|Figure One. 1.8 inch long Midland dart point found September 2, 1997 |
on private land in the approximate area of Flat Top Butte. Made from pale
red Flat Top Chalcedony. Age 10,900 to 10,200 years old. John Branney Coll.
The old man motioned for his two young grandchildren to sit down in front of him, close enough to see, but far enough away to avoid flying pieces of sharp rock. The old man readjusted the flat rock with the tip of the spear point. He then carefully positioned the groove in the antler punch with the tiny knob at the base of the spear point. When everything was to his liking, the old man picked up the heavy antler hammer and took a couple of practice swings in the air. The old man then held the antler hammer above the antler punch and swung down with enough force to transfer energy from the antler punch through the rock. The rock popped loudly and when the old man lifted up the spear point for the children to see, a flute or groove ran longitudinally up the entire length of the spear point. The children laughed as if it they had just witnessed great magic. Their eyes were as big as the moon as they looked around at each other. The old man gazed around at the children, smiling. The old man was proud of the flute in the spear point and relieved that he could still do it. However, what made him the happiest was passing down the fluting tradition to the next generation of the tribe.
|CLICK for WINDS OF EDEN|
|Figure Three. Prehistoric quarry Flat Top Butte in northern Colorado on August 2001.|
|Figure Four. 1.2 inch long Folsom dart point found |
at the Shadows on the Trail site on August 30, 2006.
Made from Flat Top Chalcedony. John Branney Coll.
Flat Top Chalcedony is a purple/lavender, pale red, tan or white silicon based rock found in abundance in northeastern Colorado. Anyone who has artifact hunted in northeastern Colorado, the panhandle of Nebraska, and southeastern Wyoming has found chipping debris made from Flat Top Chalcedony. It is arguably the most abundant prehistoric raw material found in northeastern Colorado.
|Figure Five. 3.3 inch long Paleoindian blade made from a lavender-colored |
Flat Top Chalcedony and recovered on private land in northern Colorado
on May 24, 2003. John Branney Collection.
From a mineralogical perspective, chalcedony is a cryptocrystalline or fine-grained variety of quartz that has a waxy luster. It is often times transparent or translucent, but can be opaque. It varies in color from white to gray to blue to brown to red and other shades. It occurs most frequently as rounded or imitative forms, or as linings in rock cavities.
Chalcedony is a general term and specific names are used for specifically colored varieties, such as Flat Top Chalcedony. Some experts believe chalcedony is an independent mineral from quartz while other experts regard chalcedony as a mixture of quartz and opal (hydrous silica gel). Other examples of specific types of chalcedony include agate, jasper, and onyx.
|CLICK for GHOSTS OF THE HEART|