Excerpt from Tales of a Texas Boy
The Bone Hunters
Moving along at an easy lope, we soon caught up with Mr. Whiteman and just rode alongside the car as it bounced over the sage-scattered flat lands. It wasn’t too long before we came up to the edge of a deep draw and Mr. Whiteman pulled right up to the rim where he stopped and let the Model T die again.
We got down off the horses, and dropped the reins to ground tie them. The horses knew what was expected and immediately started nosing around for any grass to graze on. They wouldn’t go far with the reins on the ground.
“Come along down here,” Mr. Whiteman started down a goat trail leading down the rocky side of the draw. As we scooted and slipped down the trail, I could see the walls were layered rock. This was pretty normal for a draw. As the water washed down them, the walls were dug away and you could see where layers of dirt formed up and turned to rock over the years—thousands of years. I did recall a lesson at school on the geology of Texas and learned about some of this.
Soon, we reached the bottom and Mr. Whiteman led us a few dozen feet along the wall. Some of the rock wall was chipped away and pieces were laying on the floor of the draw.
“Here,” Mr. Whiteman pointed and I was amazed to see the shape of a leg bone, but it was bigger’n any bone I’d ever seen. I figured he wasn’t puttin’ me on since a real mammoth bone was right in front of my own two eyes. I looked at Sister, but she was busy picking wildflowers again and didn’t pay any mind.
The man pulled a small hammer from his belt and started tapping around the mammoth bone.
“Look, here,” he pointed and, sure enough, I could make out an arrow head. Little chips were knocked off along the edge to make it sharp.
“That’s called fluting,” he explained when he saw me runnin’ my finger along the chipped edge of the arrowhead.
“This is really sumthin’,” I said quietly. I hardly knew what to say, I was so flabbergasted I actually got to touch real mammoth bones.
* Note: Ridge Whiteman did discover the existence of Clovis Man, at that time, the oldest evidence of human inhabitants in North America.
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Tales of a Texas Boy is available in Large Print paperback for $8.00 on Amazon. It's also in ebook format on Amazon ($2.99) or $0.99 if you buy the paperback. And if your family or friend has vision issues beyond the help of large print (as my father did), the audio book is available at audible.com for only $6.95