We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
Thanks for the link. It was a fascinating story on so many levels.
It sure seems like those ancient miners were making a living trading that precious obsidian. I have to think they were being capitalists. Poor schmuck leaving behind the 12 ingots and then not being able to come back for that small fortune.
While I am glad that Cali has paid for this research, I can't help but wonder how much it adds to the cost of building a road, house, etc. And though this info is neat, I wonder if it has been worth it.
I was on an archeology tour of some Southwest U.S. Anasazi sites. The guides mentioned that in addition to corns, beans, squash, the inhabitants also grew cotton, which either bulk or manufactured was their trade good. Unfortunately, the cottonseeds are inedible, so if they planted cotton, they had to give up beans, which caused a diet deficiency.
When you are a subsistence farmer, it's a tough choice: trade or eat.
Here in new england we find flint to be a common mineral used in tool making. Having worked tobacco as a kid i found several points that were still as sharp as when they were made. the down side of this was that we usually found these with our butts as we were picking. We found flint, chert, and quartz points but flint was predominate. Of interest to this story is that the only flint quarry in the area is in upstate New York near the Hudson. Capitalism was alive and well in New England long before we got here. The Mohawk Trail (rt. 2), in western mass, will get you there.
the mystery to me is not that the natives traded with each other but the fact that the oldest specimens showed the more superior workmanship. what would account for that?
There is some evidence that pre-Columbian North Americans were at a higher level of urban civilization. Mound-builders in Illinois and Missouri, etc. Brought down by smallpox, carried in by Ponce de Leon. Apparently, also, somehow measles made it to New England before the Pilgrims did and wiped out the resident locals. When there's an 80% mortality rate, the survivors tend to focus on just surviving, and all the specialized non-subsistence knowledge and skills are forgotten. Trade collapses also. Climate may have also helped, as the Anasazi records show. There were good times, then lean times.