Carmel roundabout construction nets ‘historic artifact’

A historic artifact, likely dating back to native American settlements in Hamilton County, has been found at the site of a Carmel roundabout project, city officials said July 3, 2017. (Provided Photo/City of Carmel)

CARMEL, Ind. (WISH) — An native American “historic artifact” that could be more than 4,000 years old was unearthed during a Carmel roundabout construction project, city officials said Monday.

Josh Kirsh, an engineering administrator for the city, found the artifact late in the day Thursday near the project site at 136th Street and Gray Road, said a Carmel news release. He found it near a silt fence atop dirt apparently left over when a utility company did preliminary work, which included digging a trench about 5-feet deep.

An Indiana Department of Natural Resources archaeologist investigated Saturday and deemed it an isolated find that should not hinder the project unless more artifacts are found.

A historic artifact, likely dating back to native American settlements in Hamilton County, has been found at the site of a Carmel roundabout project, city officials said July 3, 2017. (Provided Photo/City of Carmel)

The item is believed to be a banner stone from the Archaic period in North America, dating from around 8000 B.C. to 2000 B.C. The stones are commonly found in Indiana, Ohio and Michigan and are noted for their centered hole in the middle, the release said. Among experts, the purpose of the stones is debatable — including as a tool for throwing spears, drilling, fire-making or certain ceremonies.

City Engineer Jeremy Kashman said the find did not delay the roundabout project.

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