Finding Treasure by Don Luenser
Finding Treasure: A Treasure Tale shared by Don Luenser
Sometimes you just have a feeling. It starts to occupy all your thought. You look around and try to imagine what it was like back then…perhaps thousands of years ago. You are sure it was quite different than in the present day, except, the bluff you’re standing on, the confluence of the two streams down below, and of course the bright blue sky visible intermittently through the pine and hardwood canopy.
Like most treasures, the searching starts in your mind and in your imagination. If you can’t see it in your mind, you won’t find it when you search.
The native Americans had to have been here; I can easily imagine it. It’s nearly a perfect spot with a good view of the surroundings for protection and a good water supply at hand. I can almost smell the smoke from their campfire. They may have even spent a good amount of time here depending on the wild game on their hunts.
It wasn’t just an accident that I came up on this spot. I first located it on a topographic map knowing what to look for. Being a forester at the time also helped, because I knew I would find a fire line along a boundary. Timber companies often plowed fire lines along their boundaries to prevent the spread of a wild fire if one got started. Fire lines can be a big asset if you are searching for arrowheads. The plow reaches down into the soil and turns it over to expose soil that hasn’t been exposed for many years.
On this particular cool October morning, I found the area I was looking for and no matter how much I was in the forest with my job, I still had to sit and admire a beautiful view.
Just a little uphill from me was a semi-fresh fire line, just like I hoped I would find. The area was deep silt sand which is very typical of Louisiana and which also makes the shavings of stones more obvious. The first sign you often see of arrowheads is the flint flakes (I call shavings) where they flaked off a stone to make an arrowhead. There was also the dark black crumbles of old charcoal from campfires that often accompanied the finding of arrowheads.
It was obvious to me that a native American camp had been there in days gone by. I surprisingly hadn’t had much luck that day except in finding shavings, when all of sudden a shiny stone stood up on top of a couple inch pedestal of dirt. The rain had washed away the dirt around a beautiful reddish tinted arrowhead. I picked it up knowing that the last person to hold that arrowhead was an unnamed native American from a past forgotten, except for what I held in my hand.
I put it in my pocket and wasn’t till I got down to the stream to wash it off that I realized how special that arrowhead was. It is streaked in various colors which is beautiful, but this arrowhead also has small fossils embedded it. To me, a tremendous treasure. I have actually had arrowhead hunters offer me their entire collections for that one arrowhead. NO DEAL!
~by Don Luenser
Thank you Don for sharing your treasure story with all of us! What a find! And a definite treasure. I loved the way you told the story. I suppose you have had some practice in that area. For those interested, Don has written a captivating Trilogy called To Lose the Sun. Excellent books.
Thanks again for this tale. It is wonderful what is out there to be discovered!