Wednesday, June 23, 2010


We were surveying a dairy ranch in north west Tucson for a purported archaeological site.

The ranch was still a very active dairy ranch-full of cows.

What in the world will we find here? Could we find anything here after years of severe and heavy cattle trampling, I wondered?

The rancher was right there with us moving cows from corral to corral as we searched the ground.

At one point I had the unpleasant task of holding the cumbersome stadia rod that is greater than six feet tall, unwieldly and heavy.

We were in a corral from which the rancher had just moved about 20 cows out to the next corral.

Here I was with that dang rod trying to hold it as still as I could in the light breeze so Michel could get a bearing on it for mapping purposes.

The clouds were hither and skitter that day. One cloud scudded by and suddenly I caught a quick sparkle of—

“Yikes” I yelled dropping the rod and ran to the spot of the sparkle. Michel came running too.

There it was with all its sparkle, a whole projectile point (arrowhead), close to 1½ inches long.

A quartz crystal one to boot!

It is very unusual to find quartz crystal lithics, as pre-historic peoples seemed to prefer other materials for their tools.

And good heavens! It was an archaic point (8,000 BC-1 AD) in perfect condition.

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