"I used to pick up Indian arrow-heads in the field near the Old Manse"
Arrow-heads used for hunting fish and birds
Public DomainArrow-heads used for hunting fish and birds - Credit: Texas history

Native Americans used bows and arrows both for hunting and in warfare. Arrow-heads were carved from stone, or occasionally bone or antler, before being attached to wooden shafts. Feathers were fastened to the end to make them more aerodynamic. Such articles could be found in abundance around Concord, the site of an old Native American village. Under Thoreau’s guidance, Hawthorne learned to identify and collect them, an experience he describes in ‘The Old Manse’: “You see a splinter of stone, half hidden beneath a sod; it looks like nothing worthy of note; but, if you have faith enough to pick it up — behold a relic!” (p. 8). 

Native American arrow-heads
GNU Free Documentation LicenseNative American arrow-heads - Credit: David R. Ingham