A beachcomber has found a prehistoric spearhead that may yield vital facts about life 10,000 years ago in the past.
She was just taking a casual stroll along the Jersey Shore. As she looked for a seashell here and a stray pebble there, she came upon something that would land her name in the news.
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Audrey Stanick found to her surprise a 10,000 year old artifact. It was a spearhead belonging to prehistoric times. And it may shed important light on how prehistoric tribes lives in North America.
"I noticed it because it was very dark and shiny, and my sister from Florida who likes to collect sharks' teeth taught me to always look out for dark and shiny things at the beach," Stanick told ABCNews. "Then, I remembered a boy made a similar discovery last year, so I got in contact with the museum."
The curators of the local museum are studying the spearhead in detail now that it can be said with surety that it is 10,000 years old. Audrey chanced upon the rare artifact on October 6th. She was just out for a jaunt at Seaside Heights Beach.
Her basic purpose was a search for sea glass after a previous storm. Her sibling had taught her to recognize shark’s teeth by their dark and resplendent glow. That was what she thought the strange-looking object was when she picked it up from the sand’s surface.
Then when she took a closer look, she gasped. It was a prehistoric artifact and one that would give her that proverbial 15 minutes of fame.
"I looked at it under the microscope, took measurements with calipers and another colleague determined the point was made out of flint," the museum's assistant curator Dr. Gregory Lattanzi told ABC News today.
"It's a pretty rare find. There are actually professional excavations to try and find points like these, so to be along the shore and see it washed up is pretty incredible."
When she contacted the local museum, the curators there corroborated the fact that it was indeed a rare and precious find. The person who gazed at it from the other side of a microscope also measured the delicate object with a pair of calipers.
He pointed out that it was composed of flint. Mostly such objects are found via extensive digging by archaeologists. But to see one lying in a haphazard way on the shore is too good to be true.
It dates back to the Paleolithic culture of the Indians. Part-nomadic people must have hunted deer and caribou with such spearheads attached firmly to shafts which they hurled at their prey.
Life was indeed precarious in those times and yet it lacked the stressful complexity found today. The fact that such artifacts are found along the shores of the ocean has given a valid reasons to researchers to start making plans to dig excavation sites there.
Audrey, who found the spearhead has said that she loves her home state. And so she would like to donate the ancient spearhead to the local museum instead of handing it over to the Smithsonian like another person who had exhumed an old artifact recently.