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Student makes big discovery during anthropology dig on battle site

Date:
June 8, 2017
Source:
Wichita State University
Summary:
An anthropology student working on an archaeological site near Arkansas City, Kansas, has discovered an artifact dating back to the 1600s.
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A Wichita State University anthropology student working on an archaeological site near Arkansas City, Kansas, has discovered an artifact dating back to the 1600s.

The find occurred at the site of the long-lost city of Etzanoa, discovered by WSU archaeology and anthropology professor Donald Blakeslee in 2015. Etzanoa is the known location of a 1601 battle between Spaniards and Native Americans.

WSU senior Mitchell Young was working in an ancient storage pit at the site Monday, June 5, when 87 centimeters below the ground he felt his tool hit a metal object.

After some further digging, Young uncovered a muddy, rust-covered nail that had clearly been there for some time.

"I didn't want to get my hopes up, but once I showed it to my professor, I got really excited," he says.

It turns out that the nail is of Spanish origin and was designed to stick out from a horseshoe (different from modern horseshoe nails).

The nail isn't bent, evidence that it hadn't been used in a horseshoe, Blakeslee says. Instead, he says, it was probably traded by one of Juan de Onate's men to a native. Juan de Onate was a conquistador and founding governor of the colony of New Mexico.

"The natives of North America had access only to iron from meteorites, which they regarded as property of the sky gods," Blakeslee says. "Hence, even a simple nail would have been valued."


Story Source:

Materials provided by Wichita State University. Original written by Lainie Mazzullo. Note: Content may be edited for style and length.


Cite This Page:

Wichita State University. "Student makes big discovery during anthropology dig on battle site." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 8 June 2017. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2017/06/170608073552.htm>.
Wichita State University. (2017, June 8). Student makes big discovery during anthropology dig on battle site. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 18, 2024 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2017/06/170608073552.htm
Wichita State University. "Student makes big discovery during anthropology dig on battle site." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2017/06/170608073552.htm (accessed April 18, 2024).

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