A publication of the Archaeological Institute of America
Utah Site Yields Unique Points & Mammoth Residue
Monday, April 6, 2015
CARSON CITY, NEVADA—More than 1,000 stone tools were recovered during a survey of a section of the Utah Test and Training Range. The tools belong to the Haskett tradition, which is rarely found in the Great Basin region, including a complete spear head thought to be the largest Haskett point every found. Another weapon had traces of elephant proteins on it, making it the first likely evidence of mammoth hunting in the Great Basin. The oldest of the artifacts were made between 12,000 and 13,000 years ago, when the desert was a wetland. “Haskett is very rare, anywhere. Like Clovis, it relates to the earliest folks. They were probably moving around with a sort of condensed tool kit, and I guess you could say they were low visibility. There weren’t many people around, and they didn’t leave much of a record. But we just got lucky here,” Daron Duke of Far Western Anthropological Research Group told Western Digs. He thinks the points were probably lost in action, during a hunt. His team also discovered 19 sharp, double-sided tools called rectangular bifaces that were fashioned from broken Haskett stems. “These are artifacts that are not recognized in any of the other Paleoindian assemblages,” he said. To read in-depth about the first humans to reach North America, see "America, in the Beginning."
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