I am very honored to write this preface, as I find this book to be of great importance to the study of Paleoindian cultures in the Americas. Anyone, professional or avocational archaeologist, will find this research to be extremely useful in the understanding of the extent and nature of late Pleistocene occupations in the Central United States. Mr. Whitt has brought a great amount of data together for the use of future researchers. This is a prime example of what can be done by an individual co-operating with other interested parties. Not only will archaeologists benefit from this study, but the general public will obtain much from this book. The work stresses the importance of publication of information, photographs, and ideas, which should be the primary goal of anyone involved in the study of the Paleoindians. The professional community of archaeologists certainly owe a debt of gratitude to Mr. Whitt. It is my hope that others will take this as an example of what a dedicated person can accomplish. Professional and avocational archaeologists both have a responsibility to make their work available to every interested person.
John Broster Prehistoric Archaeological Supervisor in the Department of Environment & Conservation for the state of Tennessee
I've included 4 pages of photographs from the book. See here.
For a long time, I have admired the extraordinary quality, workmanship, and aesthetics of fluted spear points of the Tennessee Valley Region. I looked for a single document which displays these artifacts but did not find one; hence, I decided to compile one myself. Furthermore, as each year passes, information on some artifacts is lost or forgotten.
A primary goal of this project has been to preserve a photographic record and key information about the artifacts, and to make this information available to interested amateurs and professionals. My efforts were focused on the Tennessee Valley Region, including Alabama, Arkansas, Kentucky, Mississippi, North Carolina, Tennessee, and Southern Indiana. During the past several months, I had the opportunity to travel and meet many nice people who own quality collections containing candidate specimens. Visiting one collection and asking about other possibilities led me to many other opportunities for photographing extraordinary fluted points. These travels involved numerous trips (traveling approximately 11,000 miles) to visit people with impressive artifacts; I made more than 6,000 photographs of artifacts from more than 100 collections. Artifact owners were extremely cordial and complimented my mission to photograph and preserve information on extraordinary fluted points.
Although efforts were made to locate all the Tennessee Valley Region's most outstanding fluted spear points, it is understood there must be extraordinary artifacts which weren't located or weren't available for consideration.
This document presents the results of a conscientious effort to locate and photograph the most extraordinary fluted Paleo artifacts of the Tennessee Valley Region and present them in full page photographs with relevant information. One hundred and seventy artifacts are displayed. Both sides of the artifact are presented side by side on the same page; along with a ruler to provide an indication of size in inches (they are not necessarily shown actual size). The relevant information includes as much of the following information as was available: unique name, date and location found, and name of finder.
Many of these extraordinary artifacts have never before been displayed nor photographed. All photographs were made from the artifacts; none were made from casts. Since authenticity of artifacts is of great importance, a panel of judges has carefully scrutinized each photograph to ensure the artifact's authenticity. This conservative approach has likely caused some authentic artifact gems to not be displayed; I apologize if this is the case.
Comment About Appendix
The Appendix contains short stories describing circumstances relating to how several of the artifacts were found or acquired.
Artifacts from more than 100 collections are represented in this study. Photographs of 170 outstanding fluted Paleo artifacts found in the Tennessee Valley Region (Alabama, Arkansas, Kentucky, Mississippi, North Carolina, Tennessee, and Southern Indiana) have been presented. Included are 83 Clovises, 11 Redstones, and 76 Cumberlands. The distribution by location found is as follows (See matrix for greater detail): 40 from Alabama, 3 from Arkansas, 52 from Kentucky, 1 from Mississippi, 3 from North Carolina, 67 from Tennessee, 3 from Southern Indiana, and 1 from an unknown Tennessee River Basin state. It is interesting to note that these gems were rather dispersed, being found in at least 81 counties. The counties producing the greatest numbers of the 170 outstanding fluted Paleo artifacts are Lauderdale County, Alabama with 13, Hardin County, Tennessee with 9, Giles County, Tennessee with 9, and Humphreys County, Tennessee with 8. The average overall length of the 170 artifacts is 4.3 inches.