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A Crooked Knife from Blue Earth Village, 14PO24

A Crooked Knife from Blue Earth Village, 14PO24
Date: 1790-1830 CE
This crooked knife was recovered from the Blue Earth village site and donated to the Kansas Historical Society in 1880. Blue Earth village was a Kansa Indian village in Pottawatomie County. Many lodge depressions were still visible on the surface in the 1880s. Archeologists think these "crooked knives" were traded to the Kansa already in their unique shape. They were likely used for woodworking, such as in the manufacturing of bowls or spoons. Three nail holes indicate that the crooked knife once had a handle.


A Lithic Collection from 14CT312

A Lithic Collection from 14CT312
Date: 1-1000 CE
These three chipped stone tools were collected from an Early Ceramic period archeological site in Chautauqua County and donated to the Kansas Historical Society in 1976. Shown from left to right is an alternately beveled knife, a scraper, and a large corner-notched dart point fragment. Repeated sharpening on the knife's alternate sides created the bevels. Scrapers, such as this one would have been hafted onto a handle and used to scrape hides. The scraper would have required periodic resharpening. The dart point and the alternately beveled knife were heat treated, a method to improve the knapping qualities of a chert which results in the pinkish color. Dart points would be mounted to the dart foreshaft, which would in turn be connected to the dart shaft. The assembled dart would then be thrown with an atlatl (spearthrower).


Alternately Beveled Knife from 14AT448

Alternately Beveled Knife from 14AT448
Date: 1-1000 CE
This alternately beveled knife was collected from an Early Ceramic archeological site in Atchison County and donated in 2018 to the Kansas Historical Society. Repeated sharpening on alternate sides created the bevels. The knife was mostly likely hafted.


Alternately Beveled Knife from 14EK308

Alternately Beveled Knife from 14EK308
Date: 1-1000 CE
This alternately beveled knife was recovered from the surface of an Early Ceramic period archeological site in Elk County and donated to the Kansas Historical Society in 1972. Archeologists believe that knives shaped like this would have been used for bison butchering. Repeated sharpening on alternate sides created bevels. Knives with the general diamond shape are also sometimes called Harahey knives.


Alternately Beveled Knife from 14MO433

Alternately Beveled Knife from 14MO433
Date: 1500-1800 CE
This knife fragment was recovered from an archeological site in Morris County with occupations in the Archaic, Early Ceramic, and Late Ceramic periods. It was donated to the Kansas Historical Society in 2017. Repeated sharpening on the knife's alternate sides created the bevels. The Great Bend aspect style knife would have been hafted to a handle.


Alternately Beveled Knife from 14RC418

Alternately Beveled Knife from 14RC418
Date: 1350-1650 CE
This alternately beveled knife was recovered by Kansas Historical Society archeologists during a pipeline survey. It was discovered on the surface of 14RC418, a Great Bend aspect (ancestral Wichita) site in Rice County. The two notches near the base indicate that the knife was most likely hafted.


Alternately Beveled Knife from 14SA407

Alternately Beveled Knife from 14SA407
Date: 1000-1500 CE
This alternately beveled knife was found on the surface of a Middle Ceramic period Smoky Hill aspect camp site in Saline County and donated to the Kansas Historical Society in 2017. Repeated sharpening on the knife's alternate sides created the bevels.


Alternately Beveled Knife from Montgomery County

Alternately Beveled Knife from Montgomery County
Date: Unknown
This alternately beveled knife fragment was recovered from Montgomery County and donated to the Kansas Historical Society in 1975. The knife was reconstructed by the donor. The pinkish color of the Florence chert indicates that it had been heat treated to improve knapping quality of the chert. Repeated sharpening on the knife's alternate sides created the bevels.


Alternately Beveled Knife from Morris County

Alternately Beveled Knife from Morris County
Date: Unknown
This alternately beveled knife was found along the Santa Fe trail near Wilsey, in Morris County. Repeated sharpening on the knife's alternate sides created the bevels. It is likely that the knife was hafted.


Alternately Beveled Knife from Wabaunsee County

Alternately Beveled Knife from Wabaunsee County
Date: Unknown
This alternately beveled knife was found in Wabaunsee County and donated to the Kansas Historical Society in 1925. Archeologists believe that a knife shaped like this one would have been used for bison butchering. Sometimes these knives are alternately sharpened on four sides, but this specimen has been sharpened on only two alternate sides. Knives with the general diamond shape are also sometimes called Harahey knives. One side of the knife is nearly covered with the original collector's notes (some erroneous).


Alternately Beveled Knife from the Across the Creek Site, 14JO406

Alternately Beveled Knife from the Across the Creek Site, 14JO406
Date: 1-1500 CE
This alternately beveled knife was collected from a multicomponent site in Johnson County with occupations in both the Early and Middle Ceramic periods. It was donated to the Kansas Historical Society in 2017. The knife was made of Winterset chert, which outcrops in eastern Kansas and Missouri. Repeated sharpening on the knife's alternate sides created the bevels.


Alternately Beveled Knife from the Hays Lankard Site, 14AD353

Alternately Beveled Knife from the Hays Lankard Site, 14AD353
Date: 1-1800 CE
This knife was collected from the Hays Lankard site, an archeological site in Anderson County and donated in 1961 to the Kansas Historical Society. The knife gets its pinkish color as a result of the flintknapper heat treating the material to improve the chert's knapping qualities. Repeated sharpening on alternate sides created bevels. The two notches near the base indicate that the knife was mostly likely hafted. One side is nearly covered with the collector's notes.


Alternately Beveled Knife from the Mallow Site, 14DP1312

Alternately Beveled Knife from the Mallow Site, 14DP1312
Date: Unknown
This alternately beveled knife was collected from an archeological site in Doniphan County and donated to the Kansas Historical Society in 1925. Knives with the general diamond shape are also sometimes called Harahey knives. Archeologists believe that a knife shaped like this one would have been used for bison butchering.


Alternately Beveled Knife from the Tobias Site, 14RC8

Alternately Beveled Knife from the Tobias Site, 14RC8
Date: 1400-1700 CE
This alternately beveled knife was recovered from excavations during the 2019 Kansas Archeology Training Program field school at the Tobias site in Rice County. The knife is made of Smoky Hill silicified chalk, a good quality knapping material that is exposed in linear beds in northwestern Kansas and western Nebraska. Repeated sharpening on the knife's alternate sides created the bevels. The Tobias site is a Great Bend aspect (ancestral Wichita) village that had dense artifact deposits, house remains, and numerous deep trash-filled storage pits. The site is listed in the National Register of Historic Places.


Alternately Beveled Knife from the Tobias Site, 14RC8

Alternately Beveled Knife from the Tobias Site, 14RC8
Date: 1400-1700 CE
This alternately beveled knife was recovered from excavations during the 1977 Kansas Archeology Training Program field school at the Tobias site in Rice County. The knife is made of Smoky Hill silicified chalk, a good quality knapping material that is exposed in linear beds in northwestern Kansas and western Nebraska. Repeated sharpening on the knife's alternate sides created the bevels. The Tobias site is a Great Bend aspect (ancestral Wichita) village that had dense artifact deposits, house remains, and numerous deep trash-filled storage pits. The site is listed in the National Register of Historic Places.


Alternately Beveled Knives from 14EK304

Alternately Beveled Knives from 14EK304
Date: Unknown
These three alternately beveled knife fragments were collected from a multicomponent (multiple occupations) camp site in Elk County and, in 1975, donated to the Kansas Historical Society. All three artifacts were made of Permian chert. The pinkish color of one indicates that it had been heat treated to improve knapping quality of the chert. Repeated sharpening on the knives alternate sides created the bevels.


Alternately Beveled Knives from 14EK318

Alternately Beveled Knives from 14EK318
Date: 1-1500 CE
These three alternately beveled knife fragments were recovered from an archeological site in Elk County and donated to the Kansas Historical Society in 1974 and 1975. Knives with a general diamond shape, as is the white fragment, are sometimes called Harahey knives. Archeologists believe that a knife shaped like this would have been used for bison butchering. The other two knife fragments are alternately beveled on two sides. The pinkish color of one knife fragment is a result of the flintknapper heat treating the material to improve the Permian chert's knapping qualities. The remaining alternately beveled knife fragment was made of Smoky Hill silicified chalk.


Alternately Beveled Knives from 14MY316

Alternately Beveled Knives from 14MY316
Date: 800-1000 CE
These two alternately beveled knife fragments were recovered from an Early Ceramic village in Montgomery County. The site had at least one house and may represent a Pomona occupation. Radiocarbon dating on a burned post gave a date of 800-1000 CE. Archeologists believe that knives shaped like these would have been used for bison butchering. They can be alternately sharpened on all four sides or on two alternate sides. One knife has an exposed portion of a fossilized segmented worm, Spriggina floudersi. The other knife was made of a chert called Tahlequah, that outcrops in eastern Oklahoma.


Alternately Beveled Knives from 14MY316

Alternately Beveled Knives from 14MY316
Date: 700-1500 CE
These five alternately beveled knife fragments were recovered from an archeological site along the Elk River in Montgomery County. Repeated sharpening on the knives alternate sides created the bevels. The three on the bottom are made of Permian chert and the one on the bottom right has been heat-treated prior to knapping to improve the knapping qualities of the chert. The two on the top row are made of an unknown chert. The site had house remains and is considered to be part of the Pomona focus of the Early and Middle Ceramic period. Pomona focus sites are located in eastern Kansas and western Missouri.


Alternately Beveled Knives from 14MY383

Alternately Beveled Knives from 14MY383
Date: 6000- 4000 BCE
These two alternately beveled knife fragments were recovered from a Middle Archaic site in Montgomery County and donated to the Kansas Historical Society in 1976. Repeated sharpening on the knife's alternate sides created the bevels.


Alternately Beveled Knives from Anderson County

Alternately Beveled Knives from Anderson County
Date: Unknown
These four knives were collected from Anderson County and donated to the Kansas Historical Society. From left to right are shown a knife made of Alibates chert, an agatized dolomite from the Canadian River Valley in Texas, a knife made of heat treated Permian chert, a knife that may have once been hafted, and a knife in the style archeologists call Harahey.


Alternately Beveled Knives from Elk County

Alternately Beveled Knives from Elk County
Date: Unknown
These alternately beveled knives were collected in Elk County and donated to the Kansas Historical Society in 1959. Both knives were made of Permian chert. The knives gets their pinkish color as a result of the flintknapper heat treating the material to improve the chert's knapping qualities. Repeated sharpening on alternate sides created bevels.


Alternately Beveled Knives from Russell County

Alternately Beveled Knives from Russell County
Date: Unknown
These five alternately beveled knives were found in Russell County and donated to the Kansas Historical Society in 2015. Repeated sharpening on the knife's alternate sides created the bevels. There is one heat treated Florence chert knife (top row, right). All of the other knives were made of Smoky Hill silicified chalk, which outcrops in western Kansas. All of the knives are fragments with the exception of the pink colored one on the bottom row.


Alternately Beveled Knives from the Griffing Site, 14RY21

Alternately Beveled Knives from the Griffing Site, 14RY21
Date: 1000-1500 CE
These two alternately beveled knives were recovered from the Griffing site and donated to the Kansas Historical Society in 1902. The Griffing site, in Riley County, had numerous lodges present and likely represents a scatter of farmsteads from the Central Plains tradition occupied during the Middle Ceramic period. Based on pottery recovered at the site it is likely that at least a portion of the site was occupied by Smoky Hill aspect peoples. Archeologists believe that knives shaped like these would have been used for bison butchering. Repeated sharpening on alternate sides created bevels. Knives with the general diamond shape are also sometimes called Harahey knives.


Alternately Beveled Knives from the Mulcahy Site, 14AD19

Alternately Beveled Knives from the Mulcahy Site, 14AD19
Date: Unknown
These two knives were collected from the Mulcahy site in Anderson County and donated to the Kansas Historical Society. Repeated sharpening on alternate sides created the knife bevels. Both knives are made of Florence chert and the diamond shaped knife has been heat treated to improve its knapping qualities. Knives with this general diamond shape are also sometimes called Harahey knives. Archeologists believe that knives shaped like this were used for bison butchering.


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