On October 20, 2012, Jason Church, Curtis Desselles, and Tad Britt—National Center for Preservation Technology and Training—demonstrated copper sourcing using Native American copper fragments from the Gahagan site located in Louisiana. The team brought the portable x-ray fluorescence instrument, which identifies elemental analysis. This technology allows for “fingerprinting” the sample, which can then be compared and matched with known prehistoric copper sources. The Gahagan artifacts exhibit close characteristics with native copper deposits situated in the Great Lakes region. This indicates an extensive prehistoric trade network and demonstrates long distance cross-cultural exchange.
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