Barry At Work
Last Sunday I was able to attend the Third Annual Ft. Hamby Pow Wow held in Wilkesboro NC. It was presented by the Blue Ridge Intertribal Pow Wow Association and the W. Kerr Scott Dam and Reservoir. There were many events and crafts centered around Native American Indian Culture. I was particularly interested in flint knapping, which is the art of making arrowheads, spearheads, knives and sharp edged tools out of silica based stone. I met an instructor by the name of Barry who is himself part Cherokee by heritage. He began teaching me about flint knapping by explaining the materials and tools of the craft. He had some works-in-progress that he used to illustrate the strategy of forming and on which he demonstrated various tools like billets and pressure points used to make both coarse and fine chips.
Flint Knapping Knife
This craft has always interested me as I have pursued Primitive Living Skills, but it also has modern-day applications such as in a disaster situation in which you may need to make tools in order to stay alive. One of the modern materials that we have in abundance is glass, which can be formed into a cutting tool or weapon.
Yes, I know Native American Indians who use modern tools like butane lighters, and, why not use the best tool available to you? But the important thing is that they are not solely reliant on them in order to create a fire. That’s one of the great benefits of knowing these skills. I would encourage you to attend a Pow Wow in your area to learn more about their cultural ways and survival techniques.