Ancient artifacts

Published 12:25 pm Monday, July 7, 2014


Charles Griffin’s childhood dream of having an Indian artifact museum has indeed been realized over his 65 years of collecting.

Along with arrowheads, projectile points and tools made of flint and deer jawbone, Griffin has ornaments such as gorgets from the Mississippian period, which would have been worn around the neck or on the arm.

He has strung together buffalo foot bones and fish vertebrae, which have the appearance of a necklace for display. The heart of a conch shell made beautiful beads. Some shells or ornaments bear tally marks, making them even more significant, as they represented some special achievement.

As his collecting became more wide-ranging, he began to journey to northeast Arkansas where in 1500 AD, the Quapaw Indians once lived. The Quapaw culture is known for its beautiful painted vessels, utilizing the colors red, white and black.

Read more about Magic City Cheer and Tumble in the June issue of Shelby Living. Find your copy here.