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Alan Rencher

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fascinating discussion on Chrome's rendering engine.
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In 2005 I visited the Isle of Wight museum in Smithfield VA. I had not spent much time there although I did grow up on the other side of the James river. In that museum I took a photo of a stone head that was discovered in nearby Nottoway VA. I have no idea why this came to my mind today but it did. I have always wondered where this thing came from. There is literally NOTHING online about this find and it looks like the museum was flooded pretty badly since then and this may not even be on display there any more. Here is the text from the display:

Nottoway Stone Head

This unique object was found in a Pinegrove at the edge of a small field. Grove and field or on a gently sloping hill side, three quarters of a mile west of the Nottoway river and 5 miles northeast of Cortland, South Hampton County, Virginia. This is a region of rolling hills in riches, quite high for the section of Virginia.

A farmboy, Lloyd Bryant, out of I don't curiosity pulled it from its bit of soil and pine duff, turned it over and revealed a chiseled human face.

The stone, a low-grade iron [bog iron] your weighs 19 1/2 pounds. It's facial dimensions are point of Chin to top of four head 10 inches, with the face at cheekbones 7 1/2 inches. The stone other than the face itself is on work, and your regular in outline, flat on the back and somewhat larger than the face. The projection on the left side may or may not be intended for an ear. The right side does not reveal that such a projection ever existed. The worked portions of the Stone shows about the same degree of weathering and oxidation as the unworked areas. The texture of the stone is some more granular, composed of grains that will rub off with rough handling.

The face and it's carving maybe quite ancient, dating back even to archaic times [8,300 BC to 1,600BC], as projectile points of that. Are quite common in nearby fields. Even if you fluted Clovis points have been found in the area.

The field adjacent revealed no sign or indication of aboriginal habitation or use. Since we have found no associated artifacts we have absolutely no evidence to indicate it's antiquity or purpose.

Bog iron chunks and slabs of this type or fairly common in this region and arounds little curiosity. The stone may have been on earth by the plow years ago, carried from the field and thrown the side by the farm, as a nuisance to cultivation. The carved features may never have been noticed. In my searching I have found many objects discarded around the edges of fields in this manner, mortars, manos, hammers, even axes as well as unworked natural stones. It is possible to stone did not come from this field at all. It could have been found elsewhere in the vicinity and somehow discovered at this location - this we will never know.
We suppose however, that it is late, might indeed date long after contact, possibly even into the early 19th century. This immediate area is the seat of the historic Nottoway Indians, a people of Iroquoian stock, and [is] well within the limits of their reservation that was still in existence in 1825. The area is called Indian town to this day and the paved road that runs 100 yards east of the site is the old indian road.

At one site, a mile south east, we have unearthed bottle glass, nails and kaolin pipe stems in direct association with Indian pottery, decorated clay pipes and chipped stone artifacts. These fines were made at the site of a palisaded village and were found within the post circles and midden [trash] pits of Nottoway houses. I intend to excavate the site for the Norfolk Museum of arts and science is within the next year and will write a full report sometime in the future.

Mr. William Moseley and myself purchased the stone face from the boy’s parents and it will eventually be put on display.

To my knowledge no such stone head has ever been found north of Mexico and in my opinion has no connection with examples found there.

There are accounts and drawings of such faces carved on wooden posts in ceremonial plazas of tidewater Algonkian towns, but here too, there may be no connection.

The stone face and its origin may forever remain an enigma, but will always be an object of wonder. Something to stir the imaginations of men.

By Floyd Eugene Painter, Archeologist
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