Tiny Pink Utah
Arrowhead Believed 11,000 Years Old
By James Donahue
Identified as a Clovis
point by archaeologists, the small pink colored carved arrowhead, or spear point, has caused some excitement among historical
researchers because it is the oldest artifact yet found at Utah’s Grand Staircase-Escalante National
the point may have been crafted between 10,000 and 11,000 years ago by an ancient people identified by the name Clovis. The name comes from similar artifacts found in the early 1930s
near Clovis, N.M.
Instead of flint, the
point is made of a stone that is not indigenous to the area, said local archaeologist Matthew Zweifel. It has fluted edges
that gradually smooth out where the point attaches to the shaft. A point of this type is considered extremely rare.
At question is how a
Clovis point wound up where it was found. The major Clovis finds have been on the Great Plains where points and bone tools and campsites have been uncovered among the remains of extinct
animals, including mammoths.
Some Clovis artifacts
also were found in New Mexico and Arizona, but few in the
region, archaeologists say.
people are believed to be among the first North Americans. They were skilled hunters of large animals, including Ice Age mammoths
and mastodons. They were skilled in the use of plants for food and equipment. And they possessed a keen ability to seek out
the best sources of flint for their finely crafted points and tools. They also found ochre that they used as a red pigment.
One writer described
the Clovis as “pragmatic, realistic and able to live
effectively – through their own ingenuity – in previously unknown territories. Clovis
people were creative enough to make their technology work for many generations, so we should not be surprised if they did
not always behave as we believe they should have.”
stone and bone method of manufacturing tools is uniquely recognized by their fluted points.
They lived here roughly
between 10,900 to 11,400 years ago.