Flintknapping casts a Stone Age spell|
By Rip Riley
A little over a year ago, at the
Sam Noble Museum of Natural History in Norman, I saw a demonstration
of flintknapping and was hooked from that
Flintknapping is the making of stone tools. The most commonly
recognized are points for arrows and lances, axes, knives and
usually associated with the Native American culture in this country,
flintknapping was a skill practiced by the early ancestors of
all cultures all over the world.
After seeing my first demonstration I found that it is a rapidly
growing hobby, with practitioners virtually everywhere.
Here are some examples of Rip Rileyís
Flintknapping hobby. Photo provided by Rip Riley
I started feeding my interest on the internet
and by attending "knap-ins," gatherings of knappers trading
ideas, materials, tools and having a great time in the process.
For almost a year I watched, fascinated by what I saw. Finally, this
past fall, Debbie pointed out that I had been watching long enough and
encouraged me to try my hand at it. Sure enough, it was harder than
it looked. It was also quite habit forming!
I now find myself devoting much of my spare time, and some that I don't
have to spare, practicing and trying to improve my skills. I have also
seen the truth in something that the first person I saw knapping told
us, "The most important tool of a flintknapper is Band-aids."
Sharp chips and edges invariably lead to cuts. But the rewards are worth
the risk, I assure you. Anyone who is in any way interested, please
let me know. I'd enjoy sharing what, to me, is a great hobby. Rip Riley
can be reached at 405-341-5937 or by e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org