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THE AMATEUR ARCHAEOLOGIST ONLINE

Huge Martha's Vineyard Muller/Grinding Stone (posted Dec. 2010) by William Moody

Amateur Archaeologist JournalAt the head of Lake Tashmoo on Martha's Vineyard is a never-failing spring. The spring continues to serve today as a source of fresh drinking water for the town of Vineyard Haven. The land above the spring was known in years past to local artifact collectors as a prolific area for finding prehistoric Native American artifacts. It undoubtedly was a heavily occupied site by its earliest inhabitants, providing easy access not only to a reliable freshwater source, but also to ample marine resources and the Atlantic Ocean via the opening at the mouth of Lake Tashmoo. In the post colonial era, the land has long served agricultural purposes and was for some years even utilized as a nine-hole golf course. Today, the site is often visited as a scenic overlook, with sweeping views across Lake Tashmoo to Vineyard Sound, the Elizabeth Islands, and Woods Hole on Cape Cod.

Amateur Archaeologist JournalIn March, 2010, tree removal work in the area resulted in some newly disturbed soil, and in a walkover survey, the author discovered an immense muller or grinding stone lying half exposed in the topsoil just a short distance from the freshwater spring. The granitic rock measures 9 inches high, has a circumference of 23 inches on the horizontal axis and 25 1/4 inches on the vertical axis. It weighs 23 pounds. (See Figures 1 and 2.)

Amateur Archaeologist Journal This huge muller clearly shows signs of use from pounding or grinding in a manner such as would occur from employing the artifact in the processing of nuts or corn.

(Click on images for a large view)

A Muller/Grinding Stone from Martha’s Vineyard A Muller/Grinding Stone from Martha’s Vineyard

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