Chert hoes as digging tools

George Milner, Scott W. Hammerstedt, Kirk D. French

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


What type of implement was used to cut and move earth in prehistory? In the Mississippian culture at least, the key tool was the stone hoe - formed from a chert blade strapped to a handle. These blades were hoarded and depicted in use, leaving little doubt that they were for digging, in the service of agriculture and extracting earth for building. Drawing on a series of controlled experiments, the authors deduce the capabilities and biographies of the stone hoes, evoking the admirable efforts of the people who constructed the massive mounds of Cahokia.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)103-113
Number of pages11
Issue number323
StatePublished - Jan 1 2010

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Archaeology
  • General Arts and Humanities


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