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October 6, 2011 by Blue Ridge Leader filed under Columns No Comments
Morrow Point

By Bob Shuey

A gentleman found this projectile point about two feet below the surface while he was doing some heavy duty landscaping east of Philomont near the bank of what was the Long Branch of Beaverdam Creek – it is now dammed into a series of ponds. The size and shape identify it as a Morrow Mountain I projectile point made approximately 6,000 – 7,000 years ago during the Archaic Period. Of the points found in the Mid-Atlantic region, particularly those found at more than a foot deep, it is one of the more common types. It was probably hafted to a stick and may have been used as a spear point or a knife. Bows and arrows would not be seen in this area until thousands of years later. The material used for the point is rhyolite, a relatively soft volcanic rock which can be found naturally in nearby Maryland. It was shaped using percussion flaking – probably knapping with another stone, and pressure flaking along the edges – probably with a deer antler. The tip is broken off and the tool shows a great deal of wear from use or the effects of use or of being moved about by water. We do not know which people lived in this area that long ago.

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