Types of Arrowheads & What They Were Used for

By Terri Deno
There are hundreds of types of Native American arrowheads which have been identified.

Arrowheads are archaeological artifacts that can be found throughout North America. These prehistoric hunting tools have been found on farms, construction sites and other areas where the older ground has been turned. There are many different types to look for and some can be very valuable.

Covington

Covington arrowheads are typically five inches in length with a triangular point and curved base. The Covington arrowhead was named for the area of Texas where it was first discovered. This type of arrowhead is made with a Lanceolate notch. The Covington arrowhead is one of the larger types, which means it was most likely used for large game.

Boggy Branch

A Boggy Branch arrowhead is often found in the southeastern United States of Florida, Georgia and Alabma. This type of arrowhead dates back nearly 9,000 years. The Boggy Branch arrowhead comes in two distinct types. The first type has expanding triangular shape with evenly spaced notches along each side. The base of this Boggy Branch type has a bulbous shape.

The second type of Boggy Branch arrowhead is found in a much larger area of the United States, extending up to Virginia. The second type of Boggy Branch arrowhead differs from the first in its smaller size and convex base. These arrowheads were likely used for medium to large game.

Nolichucky

A smaller arrowhead from about 3,000 years ago is the Nolichucky. This type of arrowhead is named for the Nolichucky River Valley in Tennessee. Many of these arrowheads have also been found to the east in North Carolina. The Nolichucky measures only about 1 or 2 inches in length. It has a weak shoulder and slightly concave base. Smaller arrowheads of this type are believed to have been used to kill smaller animals with a poison placed on the tip before it was shot at the animal.

Simpson Mustache

The Simpson Mustache arrowhead is one of the rarer types of arrowheads and is only found in Florida. This type of arrowhead has a very distinct shape. The tip of the arrowhead is rounded and gets slightly narrow down to the base. The base resembles a mustache with two distinct flares coming out of the base. The Simpson Mustache dates back about 11,000 years and was believed to be used for hunting game at close range.

Zephyr

A Zephyr arrowhead (also known as a Lampassas or Mahomet) is a medium-size variety, measuring about 2 1/2 inches in length. This type of arrowhead is only found in Texas. The tip expands down in a straight shoulder to a concave base. The Zephyr is believed to have been used as an atlatl dart point, which is a point attached to a 4- to 6-foot-long stick. The stick was then launched at a range of up to 150 yards to kill game.

About the Author

Terri Deno is a freelance writer living near Indianapolis. She holds a B.A. in English from Ball State University. She has a passion for research; this passion is the driving force for writing about antiques, literature, genealogy, shopping and travel.