ANTLER & BONE HARPOONS
These three harpoons were
found during the excavation of the Zebree site in Arkansas (top
2) and Mound 72 on the Cahokia Mounds
site in Illinois (lowest 1).
The center example is made of antler and the other two are made from
bone. They all have barbs that were used as hooks to hold speared fish
or frogs. Single barbed examples from the Mississippian period are more
common than the three barbed example from the Zebree site. The two
harpoons from the Zebree site date to the Big Lake phase between 11200
and 950 years ago. The harpoon from Mound 72 at Cahokia is one of
several that were found. It represents one of the more complex forms
with serrations on much of its length and two long barbs. This is the
only nearly complete example that was salvaged from the site. The triple
barbed antler point in the center measures 4 1/4 inches (10.8 cm) long.