For the last few weeks I have been producing projectile points and armed darts for a Texas A&M course focused on taphonomic processes. This course, led by Dr. Darryl de Ruiter, illustrates how animal bones found in the prehistoric record offer evidence of human behavior and natural post-depositional processes. For instance, differences in impact damage from projectile points and cut marks on bone from butchering may show changing subsistence strategies over time. We have used stone-tipped arrows, atlatl darts, metal spears...all sorts of fun sharp things.
My part in all of this is to provide a healthy supply of projectile points and other stone tools for use in these experiments. I have been having a blast and thought I would share what we have been up to so far.
As always, it's been fun to make functional points and destroy them.
|Producing stone tools with students for a butchering experiment|
|Angela Gore testing obsidian point damage on bone|
|Antler composite point without binding or inset blades|
|The durability of this point style surprised us all|
|Antler point damage from impact with bone|
|Hafted Folsom point ready for impact damage test|
|Impact damage from cow head on Folsom|
|Similar damage pattern on Folsom from Kincaid Shelter, TX. Photo: Texasbeyondhistory.net|
|This Folsom point passed through the throat with no trouble|
|Josh Lynch launching a Folsom point. Look at the flex in that dart!|
|Clovis point wrapped and ready|
|Clovis point entrance wound|
|Clovis point impact damage on cow bone|