Archeological artifacts are fascinating legacies from past cultures that can teach us about the practices and lifestyles of vanished peoples. Although the term usually brings up images of lost tombs and gleaming treasures in the popular imagination, most artifacts tend to be more low-key. Arrowheads from Native American cultures are a common example in North America. They can be found almost anywhere that Native Americans lived or traveled in places like creeks and rivers.
Things You'll Need
- Zip bags
- Rubber boots
- Books and other resources about local native settlements
Read up on Native American settlements or migration routes in your region. Ancient people tended to live and migrate along rivers and other freshwater sources for practical reasons. Cross-reference this with modern maps to identify creeks where Native American hunters might have dropped arrowheads.
Get permission from the owner of the land where you plan to search for arrowheads. Plan your expedition so that you can go searching when the water level of the creek is at its lowest. Take care to wear rubber boots and other appropriate apparel if you are going to be wading into water.
Focus your efforts on bends in the creek where there is a buildup of debris. Use your rake to remove as much of the debris as possible before using your trowel to load scoopfuls of sand into your sieve to check for arrowheads. Both your rake and your trowel are best if they are made of plastic. If not, you'll need to take extra care to avoid damaging possible artifacts while sifting through the sand.
Check the roots of any trees lining the creek because tangled roots can catch and hold onto small artifacts such as arrowheads. You probably won't be able to move the roots to any great extent, so use your trowel to dig around in the sand and to load up your sieve.
Separate arrowheads from anything else that you might find during your search. Native American arrowheads tend to resemble an isosceles triangle in shape, and they total less than 2 inches in length. Most are made of a knappable stone, which is glassy, almost crystalline, and fractures like glass. Flint and obsidian are prominent examples. Check to see if the artifact has a point or protrusion where it could've been attached to a shaft and whether flakes have been knapped off on both sides of the artifact to give it the right shape.
Store any arrowheads that you find into a zip bag because old arrowheads can be very fragile after sitting so long exposed to the elements.
- Photo Credit Hemera Technologies/PhotoObjects.net/Getty Images
How to Find Arrowheads
Searching for arrowheads is a popular hobby for people of all ages. Finding arrowheads involves researching past Native American habitats and trying...
How to Find Arrowheads in Rivers & Creeks
The Historical Folk Toys website states that arrowheads were first used in Africa and were believed to be made as early as...
Arrowheads & Artifacts Found in Georgia
Before the intensified European settlement in the 18th century, Georgia was home to Native American tribes such as Cherokee, Creek, Apalachee, Oconee,...
How To Search for Arrowheads in Pennsylvania
How to Find Erie Indian Arrowheads. ... How to Find Paleo-Indian Artifacts in Virginia. Collecting Paleo-Indian artifacts can be a hobby or...
How to Find Ohio Indian Artifacts
Amateur archaeologists can find Indian artifacts throughout Ohio, according to Martha Otto, curator of archaeology at the Ohio Historical Society. Early native...
How to Find Arrowheads in South Texas
Archaeologists believe that South Texas has been inhabited by humans for over 10,000 years. Although the artifact remains of ancient cultures are...
Indian Artifacts Found in North Carolina
How to Search a Creek Bed for Indian Arrowheads. Indian Arrowheads & Artifacts. How to Identify Indian Rocks. How to Find Indian...
Arrowhead Hunting in Alabama
Arrowhead Hunting in Alabama. The skilled arrowhead makers of yore produced hundreds of missiles in a few days. ... How to Search...