(PUSHING THE LIMITS)
The two notched Cahokia points on each end of this picture were made by Bob Withrow and the fluted Clovis point in the center was made by Daniel White. The largest point measures 3/8 of an inch (9mm) long.
MINIATURE KNIFE AND
A few years ago when the artifacts for the "Stone Age Artifacts of the World" poster were being assembled I asked Bob Withrow if he could make me some very tiny points. I wanted to use them to show how very small points could be shaped by pressure flaking. He made several which are pictured on this page and in the poster.
Daniel White uses the tip of a knife to begin the process of shaping a small preform. For notching he uses pins and can go through 5 or 6 before finishing a small point. The whole procedure is done under a microscope.
If any miniature points have been found on ancient sites, they were probably made for the same reason as people are making them today. Just to see how small they can make them. Miniature points would seem to have no other purpose than as an item of curiosity.
Smaller than normal arrow points have have been found on archaeological sites in North America. Although none have been anywhere near as small as some of the ones illustrated here. One explanation is that they may have been made for a child's toy or used in small bow and arrow "teaching sets". A large variety of toys have been observed among the Eskimo including hunting outfits and bows and arrows. One of the smallest Cahokia points found on the Cahokia Mounds site measures 9/16 of an inch (14mm) long.
Hundreds of years ago in Britain and Ireland people called the stone arrowheads found in the fields and streams "elf-shot", elf-stones" and "elf-bolts". It was common belief they were used by elves and fairies to shoot men and cattle to make them sick. Someone making an arrowhead in those days like the miniature examples on this page would probably have caused quite a sensation. But the maker might have been burned at the stake!
"Primitive Man," by Edward Clodd, pp. 94-100.