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September 16, 2013
Volume V, Number 38
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To This Weekly Arrowhead
Collector's e-Newsletter:
In This Issue:

Questions Of Authenticity ...
Important To Collectors &

Artifact Authenticators &
Evaluators:  Who Can
Provide You With
"Certificates of Authenticity"?

Is There Anything You Can
Do Yourself To Begin
Evaluating An Artifact?
For Collectors Of Ancient & Authentic Arrowheads ...
Every Week A Point Or Two, Perhaps More, In:
(c) 2013.  All rights reserved.
F. Scott Crawford.
You are welcome to share articles
from this e-mail newsletter, provided
you retain both this copyright notice
and this link to our web site:  
September 2013

A fact of life in the hobby of arrowhead
collecting is this:  there are always plenty of
folks who will spin a tall tale about an
artifact in an attempt to sell you a dream
acquisition for your eager collection.

"Caveat Emptor" still rules the day ... "Let
the buyer beware."

Here is a recent example of such a situation.

F. Scott Crawford
Questions Of Authenticity Are Always In The Mind Of Careful
Collectors When They Consider Acquiring Artifacts By Trade Or
Purchase ... Even From Sources They Know And Trust.
A Collector Sent Me This Photograph Which He Made Of A Recent
Acquisition.  He Asked Me About The Above Example Of A Deeply
Base Notched "Calf Creek" Archaic Period Knife Or Spear Point.

I wrote back to Bruce:  
"Nice Oklahoma piece.  Excellent condition.  Who was the source?  I would be cautious with
this piece, as it looks too perfect to be a used tool or weapon.  If it is ancient, it is in very fine
condition.  Note how the ends of the pressure flakes are still attached to the body of the
piece.  In most ancient pieces, unless they have been greatly sheltered, these ends of flakes
have been detached by temperature expansion and contraction or in use.  Their presence is
to be considered."  
(Note:  I have hidden the names of both an advisor and an "authenticator" referred to in this discussion,
to protect the privacy and name of those persons.  The referenced complaint is not proven, just claimed.)

His reply:
"Thank you for your message re: the 'calf'.
I went over the item with a microscope today and what I had hoped were mineral deposits
came off w/ a dry Q-tip.
Also, I couldn't find patina or use wear.
It is a well flaked object, but I don't think it is ancient.
I spoke w/ Rick *******, who advised:  'The market is flooded with fake calves with  ***********
COA.  It is a shame that the artifact market draws crooks like flies to %*@# !'
I sent the 'calf' back this PM."
p.s.  Below is a "Bell Creek" (Stermer thought it was a Calf; Rogers called it a Bell).  I love the
woman attached to the hand.  She's authentic.
Artifact Authentication Services And Certificates Of Authenticity.
Here is a view of an
Archaic period E-notched
knife blade:
 By enlarging
the detail of the E-notch
though the enlarged view
afforded by a simple 8-power
Jeweler's Lupe we can see the
well preserved edges of the
stone inside the notch ... and
also note that we do not see
any modern metal marks on
the hard flint surface.  This is
not absolute proof, but it
does give us an indication of
possible ancient origin of the
Correspondence Course

The first two lessons are free when  
you subscribe today to this popular
24-lesson correspondence course
for new & intermediate students
of flint knapping:

(c) 2013.  All rights reserved.
F. Scott Crawford, Carrollton, Texas
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about "flint knapping" ... the ancient art and craft of making arrowheads and other stone projectile points,
tools and hunting weapons.

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Authentication and evaluation services for artifacts from all over the world are available
from a number of highly respected sources.

Some offer these services for regional items, since they may specialize in Western or
South Western, or South Eastern, or North Central or North Eastern artifact types.

And most of the authenticators have web sites.  Read up on their services, learn about the
specialties, obtain pricing and timing information, and determine how to send items for
authentication and evaluation.

Here are some well known and respected authenticators:

Dwain Rogers
Texas Flint Authentication
4102 Birch Avenue
Temple, Texas  76502
Telephone:  1-254-791-5520

Bill Jackson
Jackson Galleries
P.O. Box 1005
Mount Sterling, Kentucky  40353
Telephone:  1-800-466-3836
Fax:  1-859-499-0160

Tom Davis
Davis Artifacts, Inc.
P.O. Box 676
Stanton, Kentucky  40380
Telephone:  1-606-663-2741

Ben Stermer
Western Typology
email:  BSte122241@aol.com

Jeb Taylor
Jeb Taylor Artifacts
P.O. Box 882
Buffalo, Wyoming  82834
Telephone:  1-307-737-2347

Ken Partain
7044 Market Street
Dover, Arkansas  72837
Telephone:  1-479-331-3486

Sam Cox
968 Floyd Drive
Lexington, Kentucky  40505
Telephone:  1-859-351-5675
What Can You Look For To Begin To Understand The Authenticity
Of The Artifacts Which You Consider For Your Collection?
You can use a jeweler's Lupe 8x magnifier, just to begin the high enlargement examination
of an artifact, to look for edge wear and tool marks.  The nature of any edge wear can give
you an idea of the kind of work in which a stone tool was used.  An absolutely sharp edge
can mean that the tool or weapon is perhaps not ancient at all, but it might be a modern
reproduction.  If you see copper or iron marks along the edge or in rough spots on the
surface, you may be seeing evidence of modern knapping tools.  Just learn to keep your
eyes open and evaluate the visible evidence.  Caution is always advised, especially when
you are dealing with what is proclaimed to be an ancient weapon, in particular when it
appears to be in perfect shape.  Most used stone tools and weapons look used.  Absolutely
perfect examples are rare indeed.
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