Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Old Stuff and Really Old Stuff

When I was on my last bike ride and took a break to look for arrow heads I found an artifact.  I showed it to my friend Mike who is a flint knapper and an experienced arrow head hunter.  Mike is a colleague of mine in the printing industry but also like me Mike is interested in history.  When I showed the grey flint stone to him he told me the type of flint, approximate age of the artifact 2,000-10,000 years old  and a brief description of the steps involved in chipping a tool like mine from this very hard sedimentary rock.   

Right before I found the stone knife I spotted a twisted green tarnished tie wire laying in the dirt.  I noticed what this piece of discarded debris was right away.  The curious thing is the telegraph lines along the railroad grades I now stood were taken down in the 1970's.  I folded the wire and stuck it in the back pocket of my cycling jersey.  After thinking about it for a few days here is what I came up with.  I had to shorten the loop on the tie because it had probably been twisted around the much larger diameter of a Hemingray 42, a common recent glass insulator.  Look closely at the wire off the right side of the insulator. My two twists are a more relaxed angle and then it is apparent where the original twist begins.  I just wanted to see the wire attached to one of my older insulators that you won't find today in the wild.  Insulators look best photographed in direct sunlight.  I love the green glow cast onto the burlap in the first picture.  The micro bubbles in the dome of the Brookfield are a nice detail revealed only after loading the shots up to the computer.   

Pictured above is the Coshocton flint knife and other points found in my own and three surrounding counties.


  1. It is amazing to me that someone can recognize the significance of a twisted piece of wire. Only you, and a possibly a small group of people could identify what that wire really was/is. Very neat.

    Your collection of arrow heads is fantastic. I like the shape of the small white-ish one at bottom left best.

  2. This post highlights one of the great things about bikes instead of cars--the world goes by a little slower, so you see more of it. And the arrowheads, or, as the archeologically-minded call 'em, points, remind me of when I was a kid and used to find them all over the place in plowed fields. Don't know what happened to the collection.

  3. Thanks for the comments. I've got to find the time somewhere to get out and secure some permission to hunt some of the local farm fields around here. There is still lots of stuff just waiting to be found. Problem is finding the time to simply go do it.