Large Pre-Columbian Neolithic Celt from Madden Lake in Central Panama

Item PL07 

This Item was Sold on 24 July 2014 for $56

Similar artifacts for sale are often found on the Lithic Artifacts web page. 

Historical Pricing information for this item and similar artifacts can be found at: Historical Artifact Prices.

This item is a large Pre-Columbian Neolithic Celt from the Madden Lake region of Central Panama. This artifact is a surface find from the shore of Madden Lake when it was at its lowest level at the end of the dry season. This artifact was found by George Chevalier who lived on the Pacific side of the Panama Canal Zone. George hunted for artifacts only in the American jurisdiction of the former Panama Canal Zone. This artifact has the letters " C. Z. M. L. " which identify the artifacts as " Canal Zone Madden Lake " and an identification mark " R C S " indicating the approximate location of the surface find.

This celt is larger than most of the other celts found in this region. It fills an adult hand when it is held. One end tapers to a rough point to make it easy to hold in a hand. The other end terminates in a sharp and smoothly polished edge for cutting. There is one small area on one side of the cutting edge that has a small shallow chip. I think that this is due to a small inclusion in the stone material. It does not affect the cutting edge function. The material appears to be a weathered form of volcanic rock, probably a metamorphic form of Basalt.

George Chevalier lived on the Pacific side of the former Panama Canal Zone until he retired and moved to the USA. He was on the same Balboa High School swimming team as my father. George used to hunt for artifacts along the Las Cruces Trail and on the shore of Madden Lake. George usually looked for Spanish artifacts, but one day, he found a small stone ax and brought it home to show to his sister who lived with him. She liked the stone ax and asked George to bring home any others that he found. Over the years, he found dozens of artifacts for his sister and these artifacts are part of the Chevalier collection. All of these artifacts were collected in the American Canal Zone in the 1950s - 1970s and prior to when the territory was ceded back to Panama (1999).

I brought several of these artifacts to U.C. Berkeley for identification. I was told that these lithic artifacts are similar to artifacts in the U.C. Berkeley collection that were dated between 500 B.C. and 1,000 A.D. View pdf files showing Panama Celt sale prices on eBay: Celt #1 and Celt #2.

Length = 97 mm ; Width = 68 mm ; Thickness = 30 mm ; Weight = 290 gm

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