Eugene Hattori

Lovelock Culture

About 4000 years ago, Great Basin archaeological cultures blossomed after an interval marked by prolonged droughts. The overall climate at this time was cooler and wetter than that of today. That resulted in the expansion of regional wetlands and lakes, including formation of wetlands in formerly dry lakebeds. This increase in effective precipitation resulted in an abundance of plants and animals that became available as food and necessities used by Native Americans in their daily lives.

Ice Age Nevada and Lake Lahontan

Between about 25,000 and 11,000 years ago, Nevada's late ice age climate was much cooler and wetter than today. While glaciers only occupied mountain ranges, much of the vegetation was similar to that of today, although it was found in different settings. This interval represents the end of the Wisconsin Stage of North America's Pleistocene geologic period, and it is well represented by the Nevada's paleontology and geology.


Distinctive, prehistoric stone crescent tools are found from Washington state to Southern California and from the Coast Range to Southern Arizona. By far, however, they are most commonly found in the Great Basin, where they are usually associated with playas. The function of these crescent-shaped, chipped stone artifacts has eluded archaeologists for several generations. There is a range of shapes and sizes, but they are part of a continuum and may be a single functional type. Great Basin crescents are distinguishable from other crescent-shaped artifacts (e.g.


From at least 8300 years ago, and probably earlier, Nevada's ancient Native Americans used the atlatl or throwing stick to propel feathered and, usually, stone tipped darts at their prey. In fact, most “arrowheads” found in the desert are most likely atlatl dart points. Although Native Americans are more typically associated with the bow and arrow, Archaeologists trace the introduction of the bow into Nevada to sometime between 3000 and 1000 years ago, a time relatively late in North American prehistory.

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