Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Top 10 Obsidian Sources: California

With nearly 22,000 characterized artifacts in the lab database, the number of California obsidian artifacts in an individual state is exceeded only by Oregon.  The top 10 favorite prehistoric sources are:

1.  Medicine Lake (all varieties)
2.  Coso Volcanic Field (all four varieties)
3.  Napa Valley (North Coast Ranges)
4.  Bodie Hills
5.  Casa Diablo (Lookout Mountain and Sawmill Ridge varieties)
6.  Tuscan (all varieties)
7.  Queen
8.  Buck Mountain (Warner Mountains)
9.  Saline Valley (all three varieties)
10.  Borax Lake (North Coast Ranges)

Sources 1 through 6 all had in excess of 1000 characterized artifacts each.  I lumped together the different source varieties for some of the source areas - Medicine Lake, Coso, Casa Diablo, and Saline Valley - because some early provenance studies didn't distinguish among the different subsources that were eventually identified.

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