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17 August 2008
4,500-year-old artifacts found in South Carolina

Archaeologists have found artifacts dating back as far as 4,500 years at the site of what will become a new Bluffton elementary school,  in South Carolina (USA). While doing preliminary testing on the site an arrowhead made of coastal plain chert, a flint-like rock, between 1,000 and 1,500 years old and two arrowhead flakes, a piece of clay pottery from the same period and a quartz stone used as a hammer that's more than 4,500 years old to fashion tools - including arrowheads - have been found last May.
     Archaeologists from S&ME, a Columbia engineering company, found the artifacts buried up to a yard under the surface of the ground, said Bill Green, the company's principal archaeologist and cultural resource department manager. The site is about 250 feet by 50 feet, he said. "We can't really tell much based on five artifacts," Green said. But he said some of them may have been part of a short-term encampment.
     The find was not particularly uncommon, Green said. Beaufort County has more than 2,000 dig sites named as part of the National Register of Historic Places. The elementary school site may be eligible for the list as well, he said.
     The artifacts are being kept at S&ME in Columbia and will be given to the S.C. Institute of Archaeology and Anthropology. The pieces were found far from where an elementary school will be built and open in 2012.

Source: Beaufort Gazette (10 August 2008)

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