Exhibition Objects

Welcome to Exploring Objects. Here you can explore the rich collection of objects that have been unearthed from the Creswell Heritage Area. To find an object, type in the words that best describe what you are looking for and click ‘Search’

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Reindeer antler © 2000 Natural History Museum, London

Reindeer antler

Antler from male reindeer from Pin Hole. Middle Last Ice Age, 37,500 years old.

This is the base of a reindeer antler from a male reindeer (Rangifer tarandus) and is about 37,500 years old. A.L. Armstrong found this specimen while excavating in Pin Hole between 1924 and 1936.

Armstrong found this antler about 21 metres (69') from the entrance at a depth of 2 metres (6'). Grooves on the surface of the antler indicate that it has been gnawed by carnivores most likely to be spotted hyaenas. Male reindeer have fully grown antlers free of velvet by September and shed their antlers after the rut in late October, although younger males may carry their antlers until February or March. This antler appears to be unshed which would imply that the reindeer died sometime during the Autumn or Winter. This and other radiocarbon dates suggest that the Creswell area may have been being used as a wintering ground at this time. The hole in the antler is where samples were taken for radiocarbon dating. This specimen has been dated to 37,450 ± 1050 years ago (OxA-3406), a date during the middle of the Last Cold Stage.

Glossary: Carnivore, Last Cold Stage, Radiocarbon, Radiocarbon dates

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