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Petrified artifact? I need your expertise to identify....

Posted by Cindy Flischel  
Cindy Flischel March 04, 2012 06:46PM
My husband and I have a possible artifact that we would appreciate any help to identify.

It was found on the shores of Lake Barkley in Kentucky. This lake was formed by damming the Cumberland River (formerly called Shawnee River) which then drains into the Ohio River.

We are not sure of its composition. It feels like rock, but has a strong resemblance to wood due to the striations. So could this possibly be petrified wood?

Also, what kind of artifact could this be? It's been carved with precision, tapered, and very smooth. A celt? A hatchet? Does the notch at the tip have any significance or is it just an area with damage?

I've attached a link so that you can take a look. Any help would be greatly appreciated!
Ronald John Gyllenhammer March 04, 2012 07:35PM
Hi Cindy,

From the images you've offered, I can understand your curiousity as to whether or not this was some type of implement. In my opinion, this rock looks like a waterworn sandstone cobble that was wonderfully shaped somewhat symmetrically by water action rather than a tool shaped by a person. That said, you never know. The "striations" or lineations you have pointed out are evidence of layering not uncommon in sandstones. Tools and other implements were more often created with rocks that could provide the user with stronger characteristics that would ensure longer use than sandstone could typically provide. Althougth some implements were rarely made with sandstone material like this, more structurally sound rocks like flint, chert, quartz even granites and other rock types were typically used. Good luck to both of you in your search for implements.

José Zendrera March 04, 2012 09:53PM
I agree with Ron, is a sandstone. Can recognize a light cross lamination festoon type, common in unstable flow sediments. Flat shape should be due to almost parallel fractures in mother rock causing a breakdown in slices which were then rounded by erosion in the river bed. I can not help but show a similar sandstone, this one collected on a beach. Even without being an artifact, are beautiful stones!


Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 03/05/2012 02:04AM by Jose Zendrera.
open | download - P1080661.JPG (108.7 KB)
Cindy Flischel March 05, 2012 02:18PM
Beautiful stone Jose! Absolutely amazing what mother earth can do! :) Thank you for the info to both of you!
I took my chocolate lab to a nearby creek and hit the jackpot, finding lots of trilobites. Very happy with my find! :)
Paul Brandes March 06, 2012 01:05AM
Not an artifact, but definitely a weathered quartz rich sandstone. One can find literally thousands of these along the Lake Superior shoreline on the Keweenaw Peninsula and at Pictured Rocks. They make great skipping stones......
Linda Nelen March 21, 2012 05:33PM
I found this piece in northern Colorado near a site where broken arrowheads that were uncovered by erosion. I would like to know if it is a petrified animal organ.
D Mike Reinke March 22, 2012 12:36AM
See this previous thread, might help w/ whatever you have... Petrified fruit

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