Obsidian flake scrapers

Cultural Narrative: 

Flake scrapers were tools primarily used by Native American peoples, including the Nimíipuu (Nez Perce), for working with animal hides, animal fur, or wood. These two flake scrapers were made from obsidian rock, are black in color, and are 3.2 cm in length. Records from L.V. McWhorter indicate he found these on the site of the Nez Perce War of 1877 battle Lamáta (The Battle of White Bird Canyon) in present day western Idaho. McWhorter's records mention he visited the site with Nimíipuu (Nez Perce) warriors in the summer of 1929. Additionally, McWhorter notes that he found these obsidian flake scrapers in a cache pit/storage pit used by the Nimíipuu (Nez Perce) near a butte on the south end of Lamáta (The White Bird Canyon battlefield). The exact age of these flake scrapers or who originally formed them is unknown, but McWhorter's records suggest they are quite old due to their "dullness" from being used and the fact they were found in cache pits used by Nimíipuu (Nez Perce) thousands of years ago. There is evidence flake scrapers have been used as a tool by indigenous peoples for thousands of years.

These two obsidian flake scrapers are cataloged as 1986.2.57. The other items in the photograph include five arrowheads (1986.2.49, 1986.2.46, 1986.2.48, 1986.2.47, and 1986.2.45 in order from left to right) directly below the flake scrapers, six stone sinkers (1986.2.50-55) above/to the right of the flake scrapers, and a cube-shaped pipe (1986.2.83) directly above the flake scrapers.