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Objects and Artifacts - Archeological Artifacts - Material/Stone Type - Smoky Hill Jasper

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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 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 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: 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 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 Saxman Site, 14RC301

Alternately Beveled Knives from the Saxman Site, 14RC301
Date: 1500-1650 CE
Shown are four alternately beveled knives that were collected from the Saxman site in Rice County and donated to the Kansas Historical Society in 2017. Repeated sharpening on the knife's alternate sides created the bevels. Three of the knives are made on Smoky Hill silicified chalk, which outcrops in western Kansas. The slight pinkish color of the fourth knife indicates that it had been heat treated, prior to knapping, to improve knapping quality of the chert. The Saxman site, a large Great Bend aspect village, was occupied by the ancestral Wichita peoples.


Arrow Point from 14PH342

Arrow Point from 14PH342
Date: 500-1100 CE
This arrow point was recovered from a Keith phase archeological site in Phillips County. The arrow point has corner-notches to aid in hafting the point to the arrow shaft. The Keith phase site would have been occupied sometime between 500 and 1100 CE. The people who lived here were semi-sedentary hunters and gatherers.


Arrow Points from 14WC408

Arrow Points from 14WC408
Date: 1000-1500 CE
These five arrow points were collected from an archeological site near the Smoky Hill River in Wallace County and donated in 2018 to the Kansas Historical Society. All five are corner-notched. The notches aided in hafting the point to the arrow shaft. The three arrow points on the top row were made of Smoky Hill silicified chalk, which outcrops in western Kansas and Nebraska. The two on the bottom row were made of Alibates flint, a silicified or agatized dolomite from the Canadian River valley in the Texas panhandle.


Arrow Points from Harvey County

Arrow Points from Harvey County
Date: Unknown
Little is known regarding these four arrow points that were donated in 2012 to the Kansas Historical Society. They were collected from an archeological site in Harvey County, but the location of the site was not recorded. Shown are two contracting stemmed points, a corner-notched point and a triangular arrow point made of Smoky Hill silicified chalk. The other three points were made of Permian chert and two were heat treated to improve their knapping qualities.


Arrow Points from the Thompson Site, 14RC9

Arrow Points from the Thompson Site, 14RC9
Date: 1500-1800 CE
These arrow points were among the many collected and excavated from the Thompson site in Rice County. The site, listed in the National Register of Historic Places, was a Great Bend aspect village occupied by ancestral Wichita people. The arrow point on the top right was excavated during the 1986 Kansas Archeology Training Program field school. All others were donated to the Kansas Historical Society in 1971. The arrow point on the left of the top row is side-notched. The others are triangular or Fresno arrow points. Archeologists identify Fresno arrow points as being unnotched with a triangular shape. Though small and thin, they would have been extremely effective on the hunt.


Artifact Collection from 14JW304

Artifact Collection from 14JW304
Date: Unknown
These five artifacts show the variety of the collection from an archeological site in Jewell County. On the top row, from left to right, is a scraper and modified flake made of Florence chert and a biface made of Smoky Hill silicified chalk. On the bottom row, left to right, is a beveled knife, a projectile point preform, and an expanding stemmed dart point fragment, all made of Smoky Hill silicified chalk. Florence chert outcrops in the Flint Hills of Kansas and Oklahoma. Smoky Hill silicified chalk is a good quality knapping material that is exposed in linear beds in northwestern Kansas and western Nebraska.


Artifact Collection from 14LO318

Artifact Collection from 14LO318
Date: Unknown
These two bifaces and a single flake represent the artifacts collected from a workshop site in Logan County. The dark flake was made of basalt and shows no other modification. The other two artifacts, both made of a chert called Smoky Hill silicified chalk, show different stages in bifacial reduction.


Artifact Collection from 14OB302

Artifact Collection from 14OB302
Date: 1000-1500 CE
Sometimes even a small collection of artifacts can help Archeologists learn about what activities occurred at a site. For example, the artifact collection from 14OB302 only contains three artifacts: a flake, an endscraper and a pottery rim. The flake is of Smoky Hill silicified chalk, which outcrops in western Kansas. The endscraper, however, is made Florence chert, which outcrops in the Flint Hills to the east of Osborne county. Finally, a rim sherd from a ceramic vessel was also recovered. The collared rim was cord marked on the exterior and had a series of parallel lines on the interior. Archeologists can use the rim sherd to date the site to the Middle Ceramic period. Perhaps the people at the site used (or lost) the endscraper to process a hide, in addition to making and discarding a large flake of the local material.


Artifact Collection from 14SD341

Artifact Collection from 14SD341
Date: Unknown
Shown are four of the five items collected from the surface of a small lithic workshop site in Sheridan County. The site was discovered by Kansas Historical Society Archeologists in 1990. The artifact on the left is a large flake made from Smoky Hill silicified chalk, all of the others are modified flakes made of Smoky Hill silicified chalk, a chalcedony-like material, and Alibates flint from the Canadian River valley in the Texas panhandle.


Artifacts from a Lithic Workshop, 14GO405

Artifacts from a Lithic Workshop, 14GO405
Date: Unknown
Shown are some of the artifacts collected from a lithic workshop and donated to the Kansas Historical Society in 1986. Those shown here were all made of Smoky Hill silicified chalk and include scrapers, bifaces, and modified flakes. Smoky Hill silicified chalk is often referred to as Smoky Hill Jasper and numerous other names. The chert outcrops in Gove County and many other western and north central Kansas counties. Shown here are some of the wide variety of colors found in this chert.


Biface from 14CN307

Biface from 14CN307
Date: 1000-1500 CE
This biface was collected from a Middle Ceramic camp site near the south fork of the Republican River in Cheyenne County. The biface, or cutting tool, was made of Smoky Hill silicified chalk, which outcrops nearby.


Biface from 14GO302

Biface from 14GO302
Date: Unknown
The site in Gove County where this biface was recovered is associated with two nearby quarry's for Smoky Hill silicified chalk. The site may itself be a lithic workshop. The site was first recorded in 1977 and revisited during the 1997 Kansas Archeology Training Program. A biface like this one could have been used as a cutting tool or, with more work, turned into a specific tool.


Biface from 14LA306

Biface from 14LA306
Date: Unknown
This banded biface was a surface find collected during a survey by Kansas Historical Society Archeologists at a site in Lane County. It is made of a chert called Smoky Hill silicified chalk which outcrops in western Kansas. This biface shows some of the different colors found in that chert type.


Biface from 14SD333

Biface from 14SD333
Date: Unknown
This biface was collected from the surface of small lithic workshop in Sheridan County. The site was discovered by Kansas Historical Society Archeologists in 1990. The biface was made of a type of chert called Smoky Hill silicified chert, which outcrops in western Kansas. The two fragments refit.


Biface from El Cuartelejo, 14SC1

Biface from El Cuartelejo, 14SC1
Date: 1650-1750 CE
This biface was recovered from the El Cuartelejo site in Scott County. The site, unique in Kansas, is the location of a seven room pueblo occupied by refugees from the Taos and Picuris pueblos in New Mexico in addition to Dismal River aspect groups (Apache). El Cuartelejo, also called the Scott County Pueblo, has been excavated and studied by many archeologists since 1898. This biface was recovered during the 1976 Kansas Archeology Training Program. A biface, like this one, could have been used as a cutting tool or, with more work, turned into a specific tool.


Biface from the Thompson Site, 14RC9

Biface from the Thompson Site, 14RC9
Date: 1500-1800 CE
This biface fragment was collected from the Thompson site in Rice County and donated to the Kansas Historical Society in 1971. It may have been stored for future use (what Archeologists call a cache), been meant for trade, or had some other significance we today do not know. It was broken prior to its donation. It is made of a large slab of Smoky Hill silicified chalk, a good quality knapping material that is exposed in linear beds in northwestern Kansas and western Nebraska. The site, listed in the National Register of Historic Places, was a Great Bend aspect (ancestral Wichita) village occupied during the Late Ceramic Period.


Biface from the Tobias Site, 14RC8

Biface from the Tobias Site, 14RC8
Date: 1400-1700 CE
This biface was recovered from excavations during the 1978 Kansas Archeology Training Program field school at the Tobias site in Rice County. The biface, or cutting tool, was made of Smoky Hill silicified chalk, a type of chert that outcrops in western Kansas and north into Nebraska. With additional work it could have been made into other types of tools. 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.


Bifaces and Modified Flake from the Westerman Site, 14SM310

Bifaces and Modified Flake from the Westerman Site, 14SM310
Date: 1000-1500 CE
These four bifaces and one modified flake were just a few of those collected during contract archeology work at the Westerman site by Kansas Historical Society Archeologists. The Westerman site is a White Rock aspect Middle Ceramic Period village in Smith County. All of the material pictured here are Smoky Hill silicified chalk, a good quality knapping material that is exposed in linear beds in northwestern Kansas and western Nebraska.


Chipped Stone Artifacts from the Garret Site, 14TO327

Chipped Stone Artifacts from the Garret Site, 14TO327
Date: 2000 BCE-1000 CE
This stemmed dart point and two bifaces were recovered during the 1997 Kansas Archeological Training Program field school at the Garret Site in Trego County. The artifacts are made of Smoky Hill silicified chalk, a good quality knapping material that is exposed in linear beds in northwestern Kansas and western Nebraska. The bifaces could have been used as a cutting tool or, with more work, turned into specific tools.


Chipped Stone Artifacts from the Hickman Site, 14PH102

Chipped Stone Artifacts from the Hickman Site, 14PH102
Date: Unknown
Shown are three examples of the chipped stone tools from the Hickman Site, a Native Indian campsite of an unknown time period in Phillips County. All are made of Smoky Hill silicified chalk and are (left to right) a large flake, a midsection of a thin knife or biface and an expanding stem projectile point with a broken tip. The Hickman Site was initially recorded by Roscoe Wilmeth in 1957. Wilmeth served as a Kansas Historical Society assistant museum director and the first State archeologist of Kansas.


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