arrowhead hunting - Page 2 - The HuntingPA.com Outdoor Community

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post #11 of 120 (permalink) Old 02-18-2009, 06:53 AM
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Re: arrowhead hunting

I'm not claiming to be an expert, but I've had some experience and instruction. There was a local guy back home in Western NY, who was an amatuer archaeologist with thousands od artifacts he had collected over the years. He "learned" me and my freinds how to and where to. Often anthropologists and archaeologist from the Universities and museums would consult him.
That site where you found the chips could also be a "kill site" where they cut up one or more animals. They used small flakes cut meat and scrape hides, full knives were rare. They would usually carry a large peice of flint and make tools as the went along or as needed.

You people sit tight, hold the fort and keep the home fires burning.
And if we're not back by dawn... call the president.
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post #12 of 120 (permalink) Old 02-18-2009, 08:21 AM
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Re: arrowhead hunting

Being an amateur collector for over 40 years, I can think of no more satisfying of a hobby than collecting Indian artifacts..Each one is different, and each one tells a story.First of all, most "arrowheads" were actually made thousands of years before bows & arrows even existed, and were actually knife blades, hafted to a wooden handle.

I've done all my collecting along the Susquehanna and it's tributaries within Northumberland, Schuykill, and Dauphin Counties.The good news is that 90% of those arrowheads are still out there..The bad news is that most plowing has given way to no-till practices where these arrowheads are no longer being raised to the surface for us collectors..But not everywhere.


Where do I look for arrowheads?...Along water sources, native americans built their camps at the first terrace above flood stage..Those are the fields to try first.I wait until after at least three good rains to wash mud & dirt off of the stones.. Dig along creek banks, especially around uprooted trees. Some of my favorite places are washouts right after a huge downpour...Want to know a secret?..The islands of the Susquehanna are loaded with artifacts, but you have to dig.Try the downstream end first, especially during a drought when the water levels are down..Be careful as some islands are PGC sanctioned and are off-limits as far as removing objects.Building excavation sites are another good place to snoop around.


Aging arrowheads comes with reading about them. Native American cultures span some 11,000 years until maybe 1000 years ago when metal processes were discovered.Each culture had their own "designs' by which they knapped points, with the most recent being the "triangle" points of the woodland era. Stemmed and notched points,generally, are older...What's cool is walking a field and finding arrowheads from different cultures all in the same field...Groups would come and settle in a spot for maybe a few centuries, and move on..Another group would come later and settle the same area, etc...A very addicting hobby!..I often go trout fishing in the spring only to turn around and find a freshly plowed field directly in back of me...Soon, the fishing pole is lying on the bank while I walk back & forth looking for that tell-tale stone with an odd shape..When I go hunting for arrowheads, I take an old golf putter that I fashioned into a point, which I use for flipping over potential stones..Many times, all you see is an edge or the side of an arrowhead sticking above the ground..Farm machinery probably ruins about 80% of the points I have found..I have, maybe 2000 points but many are in a five gallon bucket as damaged pieces..I only display the decent ones anymore...Here are a few.......Ken

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post #13 of 120 (permalink) Old 02-18-2009, 01:42 PM
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Re: arrowhead hunting

Holy Smokes... WOW !!!

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post #14 of 120 (permalink) Old 02-18-2009, 09:13 PM
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Re: arrowhead hunting

Thats great advice Ken
You've got a few celts too I see.
I have not done it in a while, but maybe I can try looking again soon. I have a farm the lady will let me go looking along the Lackawaxen River in Wayne County. not sure what Indians were here. But I'll find out.
Where I grew up in Western NY, we found a lot of Seneca stuff. There was a double palisaded village of the Neutral Tribe (as the French called) them which were massacred by the Seneca in the early 1600s. We used to dig there and search the fields. We had tons of pottery shards, points, tools, and my buddy found a soapstone pipe bowl in perfect shape.
If if you have a County historian, he/she may be able to direct you to any such sites like my above mentioned village.

You people sit tight, hold the fort and keep the home fires burning.
And if we're not back by dawn... call the president.
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post #15 of 120 (permalink) Old 02-18-2009, 09:59 PM
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Re: arrowhead hunting

Yankee,

Actually, any of the tributaries leading to the Great Lakes are gold mines for artifacts...The Onondaga Chert favored by western New York Cultures is very beautiful, and we even find some of it around here which proves that the people traveled and traded their regional tool making materials...Congrats on the soapstone pipe, I've never found one!........Ken
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post #16 of 120 (permalink) Old 02-18-2009, 10:04 PM
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Re: arrowhead hunting

Awesome collection. I always wanted to find an arrowhead.
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post #17 of 120 (permalink) Old 02-19-2009, 12:37 AM Thread Starter
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Re: arrowhead hunting

Great info...thanks. Where in Western NY are you from? My grandparents live in Cuba, NY, near Olean.

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post #18 of 120 (permalink) Old 02-19-2009, 12:51 AM Thread Starter
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Re: arrowhead hunting

Wow Ken, That definately gets the fire going, for sure. I live in Adams County, and work in Franklin County...not too far from the Susquehanna. What you had to say shows a lifetime of study and experience. Thank you for sharing. You hit the nail on the head too, without the story, without the history of the artifact, its just a neat looking rock. You've shown otherwise. A good buddy and I are going to hit it hard this spring and summer, and hopefully with some luck and determination, we'll have something to post too. Thanks for the hints.

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post #19 of 120 (permalink) Old 02-19-2009, 12:51 AM
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Re: arrowhead hunting

We used to find a lot of arrowheads along the Susquehanna in Susquehanna County and just over the border in Broome County. I had about 50 arrowheads and when I moved they disappeared to one of the movers. Didn't miss them as it took awhile to unpack. I did buy a bag of arrowheads in Canadaigua NY at an antique store for $5.00. About 20 of them but they had small broken points. Where we used to pick them along the Susquehanna there was a potato farm that was plowed every year but that is long gone. It is exciting to find one and I still find a few.
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post #20 of 120 (permalink) Old 02-19-2009, 01:47 AM
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Re: arrowhead hunting

Quote:
Originally Posted by YankeeHunter
You've got a few celts too I see.
Actually YankeeHunter, those are axes, and I have about a dozen of them..Most have the obvious tip damage and were probably disgarded by the users at some point..Susquehanna axes run huge and several of mine tip the scales at around eight or nine pounds. I can't help but think that some were camp axes, as nobody is going to lug something that heavy from place to place!...Axes are not easy to find, simply because most of them have already been found, as they are easy to spot from a distance...Ken

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