10 July 2013

Aleli Kelton's gravel quarry finds include suspected stone mask, bird sculpture and tools from near Yosemite, California


Aleli Kelton find in landscape gravels delivered from a quarry at Chowchilla, California. 

A stone like this could be all natural, or, for example, someone in prehistory might have found it and decided to "animate it" by adding two nostril representation divots under "the nose." Only close scientific examination of objects such as this found in supportive contexts can rule human artificiality in or out. At this time, Archaeology sees no importance in determining if these kinds of objects were ever worked by humans.

Bird and human therianthropy (click photos to expand)

A possible depiction of a bird/human therianthropomorph. The bird form here has been given a human- like head with an 'eye' which is visible in the stonework. The human and bird combined forms were first identified in the United States by Alan Day at site 33GU218 in Ohio and they were probably significant in the spiritual lives of their prehistoric collectors and makers.

Close up of human head profile looking right with 'hair, eye, nose, mouth, chin and neck' elements

The view of this rock in the upper left quadrant may be an artistic depiction of a bird form with a human-like head looking right. 

Aleli Kelton's intuitive identification of possible tools in addition to iconographic items may support prehistoric human use of the gravels delivered to her home near Yosemite. These smaller items are from a quarry at Madera. This may be a core from which stone flakes were derived and it may also have been a core tool itself.

This stone exhibits evidence of human flake removal. It may be another example of Mode I Oldowan technology, which is not recognized by archaeologists in the United States. The form looking like a letter "P" may have been intentionally incised on this tool.

I identify this object as a possible "lithic workbench" which was used as a supportive anvil type stone for working or breaking other stones or bone or wood while leveraged against its platforms, such as the two tools seen in the photo above this one.

Thank you Aleli for your photos and observations.


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