This shell tool, which may have been used to make decorative designs on a ceramic vessel prior to final firing, was found during a recent dig in the the Forest Preserves of Cook County (FPCC).
The site was a large Native American farming village and is the “type site” for the “Huber Cultural Phase” (ca. AD 1450-1640).
Staff from the Northern Illinois Field Station, along with volunteers, collaborated with FPCC to investigate and restore the site in June. Native habitat restoration together with careful removal of underbrush across the an archaeological site area can create sight lines to aid in monitoring of the site by Forest Preserve staff and stewards and therefore discourage looting activity. ISAS and FPCC have used this approach on other parcels throughout the preserves.
In addition to the shell tool, archaeologists found stone tools, ceramic vessel fragments, and bone and shell tools, including a bone needle.
Read more about this investigation and restoration project.