An Experimental Pilot Study Into the Potential of Semi-crested Blades as Diagnostic Indicators of Core Preparation Method in Core-less Northwest Coast Microblade Assemblages

Nicholas Hans Waber


Two primary Early Holocene Northwest Coast microblade sub-traditions have been identified: the Campus/Denali complex, typified by bifacially prepared wedge-shaped microcores, and the Northwest Coast Variant style, represented by tabular or conical endscraper-like unifacial cores. The two complexes overlap both temporally and geographically, and with the relative paucity of cores recovered from microblade-bearing sites, further definition of techno-social boundaries is difficult. This paper presents the results of an experimental study to test the potential of the semi-crested blade, a regular product of microblade production, as a possible means of distinguishing between Campus/Denali and Northwest Coast Variant microblade assemblages where cores are ambiguous or absent.

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