Clinker, pumice, scoria, or paralava? Vesicular artifacts of the lower Missouri basin

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dc.contributor.author Estes, Mark B.
dc.contributor.author Ritterbush, Lauren W.
dc.contributor.author Nicolaysen, Kirsten
dc.date.accessioned 2013-04-29T21:32:34Z
dc.date.available 2013-04-29T21:32:34Z
dc.date.issued 2010
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/2097/15693
dc.description.abstract Abrading artifacts made of vesicular (porous) rock are not uncommon at archaeological sites along the Missouri River and adjacent areas. Various terms have been used to describe this material including pumice, scoria, clinker, and floatstone. Each of these terms implies different geologic origins (volcanic vs. non-volcanic) and affects interpretation of the potential modes of transport. Identification of the source area of these materials may provide significant information regarding past human movements and activities. This study focuses on vesicular artifacts in the central Plains and in particular from the Leary site (25RH1) in the southeastern corner of Nebraska. Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM) was used to identify the chemical compositions of a subset of the Leary artifacts and comparative geologic samples of volcanic and metasedimentary origin. The results imply that the Leary (and likely many other) vesicular artifacts from the central Plains are non-volcanic in origin. The raw material from which these artifacts were made is more properly termed "paralava" and derives from outcrops in the northern Plains. Historical documents suggest that this buoyant material was transported naturally be the Missouri River as "floatstone". en_US
dc.language.iso en_US en_US
dc.relation.uri https://doi.org/10.1179/pan.2010.013
dc.rights Permission to archive granted by the Plains Anthropologist, April 10, 2013. en_US
dc.subject Paralava en_US
dc.subject Clinker en_US
dc.subject Scanning electron microscope en_US
dc.subject Semiquantitative analysis en_US
dc.subject Abrading artifacts en_US
dc.title Clinker, pumice, scoria, or paralava? Vesicular artifacts of the lower Missouri basin en_US
dc.type Article (publisher version) en_US
dc.date.published 2010 en_US
dc.citation.doi 10.1179/pan.2010.013
dc.citation.epage 81 en_US
dc.citation.issue 213 en_US
dc.citation.jtitle Plains Anthropologist en_US
dc.citation.spage 67 en_US
dc.citation.volume 55 en_US
dc.contributor.authoreid lritterb en_US


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