Archaeologists working at the Mitchell Prehistoric Indian Village last month uncovered an intriguing find, a Paleoindian point believed to be between 7,500 and 8,000 years old. According to Dr. Adrien Hannus, principal archaeologist at the Village and director of the Archeology Laboratory at Augustana College in Sioux Falls, it is infrequent that such an old artifact would be recovered from a more recent site. The Mitchell Prehistoric Indian Village is 1,000 years old.
The spear point is fashioned from brown chalcedony and is flaked in a style typical of the James Allen or Frederick points. These styles are more recent than the better known Clovis points.
What is puzzling is how the Paleoindian point arrived at the Village. Was it an artifact handed down for generations? Or, was it something a warrior or hunter found and recognized as something old and special? We may never know. What we do know is that it was reworked and fashioned into something like a pendant – jewelry or a shaman’s object? Again, it is likely to remain a mystery.