01 June 2012

Rock in context of multiple "pebble face" finds suggests prehistoric recognition and modification to highlight natural features

Find by Dennis Boggs, Irrigon, Oregon, near the Columbia River

Dennis Boggs has been collecting suspected worked stones from the Columbia River valley at Irrigon for almost 50 years. Dennis independently identified a pattern of stones resembling crude anthropomorphic faces and has collected dozens of such examples. He generously gifted his collection to portablerockart.com so it can be shared with a wider audience.

In this markup, white lines indicate possible areas of modification to enhance the face features. The rock has been heavily rolled by environmental forces and the carving evidence is very faint. This piece could be an expression of the "one eye open, one eye closed/missing" motif of a face, often emotively depicted in anguish or pain.

Dennis Boggs is not alone in finding simple stone faces near the Columbia River, as is evidenced by this recent find from up river in Columbia Park at Kennewick, very near the find location of the famous Kennewick Man.


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