This flake was struck from the base of a glass bottle at the Mistake Creek Native Police camp near Clermont, central Queensland, ca. 1863-1879. Glass flakes were used as cutting tools.
This flake was struck from a black glass bottle, probably made in a three-piece mould. The flake was detached by a hard-hammer percussion blow to the inside edge of the bottle’s push-up. The flake propagated down the face of the bottle, but did not emerge on the bottle’s interior. The bottle’s heel (just inside the push-up) and the adjacent exterior bottle wall form an angle of just under 90 degrees; this geometry is suitable for controlled percussion flaking, and striking flakes from this configuration was common in flaked-glass bottle assemblages across Australia.
The artefact is curated by the Queensland Museum, catalogue no. MIS-48131.
See the annotations for technological details about this stone tool.
The Native Mounted Police in Queensland was a government paramilitary force formed to eradicate Aboriginal resistance to the European invasion. The Native Mounted Police, under European leaders, committed many of the colonial frontier massacres of Aboriginal people in Australia in the 19th century. The force was staffed by Aboriginal people taken from one part of Australia to counter resistance in another. Traditional stone-flaking techniques were applied to glass by the troopers or their families in these camps.