Looking Beyond Blue: Source Identification of Midwestern Blue-Gray Chert

Shane K. Butler, Madeleine G. Evans

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


Blue-gray chert from several sources was widely exchanged and transported, both in raw and artifact form, across the Eastern Woodlands during Paleoindian, Late Archaic, Middle Woodland, and early Late Woodland times. Identification of the source(s) exploited by specific populations can illuminate important cultural/behavioral patterns. In an ongoing study, ISAS and ISGS researchers attempt to establish objective, non-destructive means of source identification for Midwestern blue-gray chert, focusing on Cobden-Dongola, Wyandotte, and Kentucky Blue. Approaches include the examination of elemental composition using EDXRF and PXRF instruments, standardized color analysis with a spectrophotometer, and isotopic analysis via laser ablation and mass spectrometer.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publication59th Annual Midwest Archaeological Conference - November 5-7, 2015 | Midwest Archaeological Conference, November 5-7, Milwaukee, WI
StatePublished - 2015


  • ISAS
  • ISGS


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