Wilbert B. Hinsdale, the Museum’s first custodian of Michigan archaeology, collected this group of 286 arrow and spear points sometime before 1928 in Washtenaw County, Michigan. Although the points vary widely in form, material, and age (dating from c. 6000 to 600 BC), they were grouped together under catalog number 27733. At first, it might not be obvious what they all have in common: All have notches (indentations on their lower corners or sides) at the place where the point would have been attached, or hafted, to a wooden shaft. Although we lack information on their precise archaeological contexts, this group of artifacts provides valuable information on the diversity of point types made by the ancient occupants of southeastern Michigan. In addition, the range of stone raw materials—many of which can be assigned to known sources—provides important clues on the movement and economic activities of ancient communities.
In honor of the University of Michigan’s 2017 bicentennial, we are celebrating the remarkable archaeological and ethnographic collections and rich legacy of research and teaching at the Museum of Anthropological Archaeology by posting one entry a day for 200 days. The entries will highlight objects from the collections, museum personalities, and UMMAA expeditions. The Kelsey Museum of Archaeology is also posting each day for 200 days on Twitter and Facebook (follow along at #KMA200). After the last post, an exhibition on two centuries of archaeology at U-M opens at the Kelsey. Visit the exhibit—a joint project of the UMMAA and the Kelsey—from October 18, 2017 to May 27, 2018.