Evocative Stones: Variable Obsidian Source Use in Northern California
Author(s): Carolyn Dillian
Northern California contains multiple, geochemically distinct, high-quality obsidian sources that were quarried in prehistory. However, not all were exploited equally. Instead, selection patterns suggest that some obsidian sources were reserved for manufacture of specific types of objects, while others could be used for more routine tools. The geologic and cultural context of the obsidian source may offer explanations for why differential quarrying and use occurred. Glass Mountain in Siskiyou County, California, provides a case study for selective use of obsidian for special objects. Just as obsidian objects fulfilled utilitarian or symbolic functions, obsidian sources retained special roles within prehistoric contexts.
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This Resource is Part of the Following Collections
- Society for American Archaeology 80th Annual Meeting, San Francisco, CA (2015) •
- Exotic, Lustrous, and Colorful: Obsidian in Symbol, Society, and Ceremony
Cite this Record
Evocative Stones: Variable Obsidian Source Use in Northern California. Carolyn Dillian. Presented at The 80th Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, San Francisco, California. 2015 ( tDAR id: 394991)
min long: -125.464; min lat: 32.101 ; max long: -114.214; max lat: 42.033 ;