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Japanese Wrecks, Iron Tools, and Prehistoric Indians of the Northwest Coast

George I. Quimby
Arctic Anthropology
Vol. 22, No. 2 (1985), pp. 7-15
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/40316086
Page Count: 9
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Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
Japanese Wrecks, Iron Tools, and Prehistoric Indians of the Northwest Coast
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Abstract

The prehistoric Indians of the Northwest Coast of America possessed limited numbers of iron blades for their adzes and chisels. The source of these blades is likely to have been Japan. They reached American shores in the wrecks of disabled wooden vessels pushed by the ocean currents and the westerly winds. Such unwanted voyages lasted one to two years. Iron blades were part of the tool assemblages of Japanese seafaring men, some of whom survived their terrible ordeal. Such voyages in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries are a matter of record. It has been estimated that some thousands of disabled vessels reached American shores during the first 17 centuries of the Christian era.

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