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Mar 2 16 9:33 AM
Sorry for the low quality, I will eventually get the original and repost it. The flake measures about 6 1/2 by 3 1/2 inches and fairly thin considering the size. Obsidian sources can cover a large area, this one seems to be roughly 5 square miles. No Clovis points have been reported in this 5 mile section, but I'm one step ahead of Cooper's "impossible" because an obsidian Clovis point found over 100 miles away was traced back to this source. So at least I know Clovis people were active in this area whether they were making what I've been finding or not. At this point I think I can eliminate "impossible" and reduce the problem to "how probable?".
It was not until 2014 and again in 2015 that I found two sites (within the 5 sq. mile source area), both unmixed small patches...maybe 50 yards square in area, that contain all the same artifacts that Cooper reported for a larger mixed site. I hope all the little bits an pieces I've found over the years will add up to something worthwhile, but then again maybe not.
Mar 3 16 10:21 AM
Mar 3 16 7:35 PM
Spot on again! Either your eyes are still 20/20 or my photography is better than I thought. Yes, those are mostly feathered out. But what I'm doing for now is simply posting artifacts that are random isolates not connected closely to any site or any major debitage pile, a few flakes around at most. West of the Rockies there are some sharp dichotomies, which very few Archaic/modern choices are available. And Rondeau, Fagan, Beck and Jones, and several others that I can reference, pretty much agree that Western Stemmed manufacturing is overall quite different than Clovis when everything is taken together as a whole. When found in the same valley, for instance, Clovis is generally found separated from WS sites...but there are some exceptions of course.
So WS can be found with fluting, overshot flakes and so on, even some of the Blackrock concaves are very close in plan form and size, but none of these point styles contain all of the Clovis attributes at the same place that I know of. That's where Clovis differs, even without the Clovis points, John Fagan claims there is a distinct difference in manufacturing style at the Dietz site. So just how much difference has to be found lumped together at one discrete site in order for it to be reasonably certain it is a Clovis site?
I have a couple of more isolates to find in my morass of unsorted photos when I have time, then I will start in on the sites that contain a some mixing.
Another Western dichotomy is climate and Mount Mazama ash as a marker. In spite of the fact 14C dating is horrible out here, there are some conditions that can very easily separate Paleo from Archaic and the more recent material. Even though literally millions of Archaic and modern points have been found in the Great Basin and along the Columbia River, the dried lake beds show just the opposite distribution, with very few Archaic/modern styles found compared to Paleo styles. That's why the Clovis Quest program is confined to those locations where Archaic/modern sites are scarce.
While they are digging the rock shelters, they are also pedestrian surveying nearby quarries and dry lake beds at about a 1000 acres a year.
Thanks again Bob, you do have good eyes in spite of my photography skills.
Mar 5 16 3:01 PM
Here is an example of an overshot flake that is not feathered out. Everything at this particular site is ordinary bifacial thinning flakes, overshot flakes, plunging end snaps, the waste blades from successful end thinning, and several end-snapped tips with large lips still attached (quite different from the common end snaps with perverse fractures like I posted above in my reply to Kieth). The failures originated from the ends, not the sides as is so common in Western Stemmed rejects.
Mar 7 16 3:01 PM
This is either an end thinning flake or a flute/channel flake. I think it would spice up Judith Cooper's impossible (with what she had to work with) Clovis age workshop had one like it been found there. Unfortunately for me it is not obsidian, nor was it found in Oregon. However, it was found within sight of Badger Mountain and below that of course is the East Wenatchee Clovis site. I have it sitting on top of Lithic Casting Lab's #326, his color is not true, but I did take some material from the supposed quarry over to the Washington State History Museum in Tacoma to see how some of the material I've been finding there matched up with the originals visually. They did.
This flake is an isolate too. It was found about two hundred yards from a gravel road where the base of a broken Clovis point was found. It could not be determined if that point was uncovered by a road grader or carried in from elsewhere by a gravel truck. But to me it is a fun coincidence to think about.
Mar 9 16 8:05 AM
These two were not found together and do not conjoin. For an example of what they do look like when they can be conjoined can be found in Figure 13, page 61 (Dickens 2005).
Mar 11 16 8:24 AM
This flake is almost a mirror image in both size and shape of the one shown in Cooper's Fig. 1; I. Like the one in post #19, it was found in a cow trail, why it didn't get broken is unusual, so I moved it out of the trail to take the photo and maybe it will have a chance to age some before a cow or an ATV breaks it.
Altogether then, I've found one site (that so far hasn't shown any signs of being mixed) that contains all of Cooper's examples in fig. 1; B,C, D, E, and G-M. Either she is very good at cherry picking certain artifacts out of a mixed site or there is a strong chance of a cultural connection. But are three different types of co-occurring flakes good enough?
I might mention at this point that at the Dietz site, which has been systematically searched by archaeologists three or four times (IIRC), there is only one base with a diving flake like the one shown in Cooper's Fig. 1;D or my post #26 shown in the literature and that was found in the Clovis area.
Mar 13 16 7:43 AM
This point is from a mixed area. There is a total of 4, this being the only one made from exotic material, the other three are made from obsidian. The only other unequivocal diagnostic style found in the immediate area is Haskett.
“Haskett is very rare anywhere.”
What we have here is a situation where 4 Haskett points were found with (few hundred yards apart) 4 Elko-like points....at least from Judith Cooper's "impossible" without something diagnostic claim. So what is the point of this? Another coincidence. For those following Daron Duke's work, he has recently made arguments that the Haskett style is of equal age or maybe older than Clovis. People who made Elko points, Haskett points, and Clovis points all came to this spot for the same reason, the material. No one lived here, it is just a quarry site.
Where Archaic and later people lived is easily identified and separated out from Paleo by other cultural items found with them like grinding stones for food processing, effigies, rock cairns, pottery shards, and lots of small arrowheads etc. To continue with the coincidence, I find it odd that RARE Clovis-like manufacturing is being found with RARE diagnostic Haskett points (excluding the diagnostic Archaic/modern stuff). I simply haven't been finding Parman, Blackrock Concave, or any of the other common Paleo points in the 5 mile square, but I have at lower elevation on the dry lake beds.
Statistically I haven't got enough yet to get really excited about, but as usual with this sort of thing more data is always needed. The snow is melting fast, but still 8 inches on the ground so it's still too early to think about getting out into the field.
Mar 13 16 8:33 AM
knapperbob wrote:Bottom line: Reconciling possibilities and probabilities takes a lot more evidence like we have talked about, but should point our research in productive directions.Knapperbob
What then is the test for "productive directions"?
Einstein's E=MC2 was not exempt from having to demonstrate it's validity against real-world observations, no matter how perfect the math. As I read it it means a hypothesis can't live on theory alone (or in this case replication alone for reasons given below), it has to be testable in real life, not simply claimed on paper.
You may well be able to show that 96 flakes produced in controlled lab conditions (with different impactors) can be distinguished from each other, but in the real world I think your new method will be fraught with difficulties, some of which are mentioned here:
Until real-world testing is done your method falls into this category:
"However, hypothetical possibilities
cannot be construed as facts in need of disproving (O'Brian et al. 2014)."
Testing is being done (or I should say real-world data is being gathered) for Rondeau's claim, so running the two statements together is far more parsimonious at the moment:
"Co-occurrences (Rondeau 2009) "...may ultimately allow cultural associations to be determined even when there are no traditionally diagnostic lithics at a site (Patten 2015)."
May 9 16 6:53 AM
Last week I got a chance to get out in the field, as you can see from the photo the snow has still not quite melted in the area, although it was no problem it turned out winter storms knocked down a lot of trees and those blocked a number of roads so I didn't get to where I really wanted to go. All those big flakes in the foreground must mean there is a Clovis point under that drift?
Didn't move any snow, but did find an endsnap nearby that appears to have a large overshot across a large portion of just one side. From the break to the tip is about 2 1/8 inches.
A midsection that looks like it has a flute.
A classic overshot flake.
Last winter I found a MA thesis online by Mark Estes that compares the differences between Western Stemmed and Clovis debitage. I don't know why the link won't open for me now, but here it is anyway:
Of interest is Fig. 6.12 All classes of flakes taken together the math shows Clovis to be "significantly different" from WST. In just the Overshot flake category:
Clovis about 3%.
So all in all this season has started out pretty well for the co-occurrence hypothesis. I found a lot of other worked stuff, but only one other endsnap that is sort of diagnostic. I'll post that when I have more time.
May 14 16 6:13 AM
Another link to Mark's MA thesis.
Paleoindian Occupations in the Great Basin: A Comparative Study of Lithic Technological Organization, Mobility, and Landscape Use from Jakes Valley, Nevada
Here is the other tip I found a couple of weeks ago, it has a rather Clovis look to it in plan form and the asymmetrical tip is a common trait for Clovis, but is also very common for other cultural types as well. It is very well made, but there are no traces of telltale overshots on either side, so just another one for the "iffy" bin.
May 19 16 2:31 PM
May 19 16 7:54 PM
May 20 16 5:33 AM
Jun 11 16 6:07 PM
No snow Memorial Day, but lots of tree problems.
Nice, but what the heck is it?
Jul 5 16 4:58 PM
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