IMHICIHU   13380
Unidad Ejecutora - UE
congresos y reuniones científicas
Gunflints in colonial archaeological sites at Patagonia (Argentina Republic): an approach to their origins and use
Simposio; 10th International Symposium on Knappable Materials; 2015
The aim of this paper is to present the results of analysis of 5 gunflints from two colonial archaeological sites located in Patagonia (Argentina Republic). In Argentina there is a long record of importation of these artifacts between the sixteenth and nineteenth centuries. However, analysis of flints in our country has a short history and still there is not a specialized field among the lithic artifacts study field. Thus, this work constitutes a new contribution to the study of this technology and to the developments on this topic in other parts of the world. In the first place we present the state of detailed analysis of gunflints in Argentina; then, we discussed their presence in archaeological sites in Patagonia. We briefly present general information regarding the production, supply and use in the colonial context of South America, and finally we focus on the sample of artifacts recovered in two colonial sites of the eighteenth century in Patagonia: The New Colony and Fort of Floridablanca (St. Julian, Santa Cruz province) San José fort (Valdés peninsula, Chubut province) (Figure 1). Both settlements were created as part of a plan of the Spanish Crown to colonize the Patagonian Atlantic coast, where officials, soldiers, peasants, prisoners, among others, were participants and who related with indigenous people in different ways.Up to this moment, it is not only the unique sample from Spanish colonial archaeological sites located in one of the southernmost reaches of the Spanish Empire, the eastern Patagonia, but also one of the earliest specimens from this area. The questions that guided the analysis of these artifacts related primarily to determine its origin, its functionality and use, as well as the possibility of recycling and reclamation after their disposal. In order to answer these questions we perform a comprehensive analysis of existing records to date on this technology, we did a techno-morphological and a raw material analysis of the gunflints, and a use-wear analysis using a metallographic microscope. By these means we expect to establish the possible origin and use of these flints.