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Eastern Agate Basin

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  • Eastern Agate Basin

    The Agate Basin point is a Late Paleo Lanceolate with tapered stem that was named after the Agate Basin region of eastern Wyoming. Similar forms are found in the East and in the 2008 study by Bradley, et al entitled "What's the Point? Modal Forms and Attributes of Paleoindian Bifaces in the New England Maritimes Region"(Archaeology of Eastern North America 36: 119-172), the type name Eastern Agate Basin was used. That study noted that some 70% of examples found in New England are "bases snapped at midsection".
    Stem edges are ground on these rare points and the flaking can be horizontal, oblique, or random.  In the Fall 2012 issue of the Bulletin of the Massachusetts Archaeological Society, Bill Moody of Martha's Vineyard reported on a site on that island that only included one exhausted complete example; the remainder were bases broke at or near the mid section. That is also the case with these 2 Rhode Island examples, found in the same field. Felsite and quartzite.

    Description of Eastern form from lithics-net:
    http://www.lithicsnet.com/agatebasin.htm
    Rhode Island

  • #2
    This example, from the coast of SE Rhode Island was located going though personal find frames for this typology section. There is a good possibility that the matrrial is argillite from south of New England. It resembles argillite from NJ and Pa. Argillite from RI is argillaceous slate, argillite from south of New England is argillaceous shale. The texture is very grainy like sandpaper. This piece displays extreme patina and extreme weathering. The lateral edges are heavily ground their length, as is the base.

    Click image for larger version

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    Flaking all but erased by weathering, some flaking may be horizontal, and if this is an impact fracture visible in the last photo, it is further demonstration of how extreme the weathering has been on this piece. The patina and weathering alone removes Woodland Period lance forms from consideration.

    Just to show truer color:

    Rhode Island

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