tckuhn's blog

ANNOUNCING NEW MAYA BOOK SERIES: FIRST NOVEL COMING IN SEPTEMBER

We are proud to announce that PLACE OF THE MISTY SKY, the first novel in a new trilogy on the origins, rise, and decline of Maya Civilization will be available to the public on all Amazon and Kindle ebook platforms by September of this year.  This important new book series is the culmination of several years of research and two trips to study the amazing Maya culture firsthand by T.C.

EL MIRADOR: MAN MADE MOUNTAINS THAT TOUCH THE SKY

 

 

                My recent trip to visit el Mirador and several sites related to this enormous complex of pre Classic Maya sites in northern Guatemala was the fulfillment of a longtime desire to add these critical locations to the many other sites in the region I had seen earlier.  This was the final preparation I wanted before beginning my new novel of what I hope will become a three part series on the rise, flowering, and decline of Mayan civilization through the Classic and post Classic eras.

PEOPLE OF THE STONE BOOK SERIES ANNOUNCEMENT

We are very happy to announce that the revising, re-editing, and reformatting of the first two books in THE PEOPLE OF THE STONE SERIES is now complete.  New 2nd editions of both THE STONE BREAKERS and VOICES UPON THE WIND are now available on all Amazon and Kindle ebook services, both in the United States and internationally.  We are also extremely happy to announce the re-pricing of both books to bring them more in line with the other four books in the series, which are already available in both printed and ebook formats.  Newly expanded print versions of

FLINT OR CHERT, EUROPEAN OR AMERICAN: THE REAL DIFFERENCES

When we hear the word “flint”, we generally apply it to any primarily limestone based calcareous hard stone, regardless of where we find.  Of course, geologists tell us there is really no such thing as “true flint” to be found in North America.  More correctly, we should generically refer to the stones described above as “chert”, no matter what color they are or from what source they occur.   The true flints only come from Europe, especially France, and to a lesser degree England and Spain.  Still, we use the terms flint and chert interchangeably, and no one here se

CAVE ARTISTS: ANIMALS, MEN, AND HIDDEN PASSAGEWAYS

The World of the Paleolithic Cave Artists, mainly of France and Spain, is one that scholars of many fields have struggled to interpret and explain since the discovery of many of these painted caves in the last one hundred years.  Others, however, seem content to view the amazing images these skilled artists created, often in even more amazing places, as simply an unexplainable “mystery” of early, modern Man—one for which we can never fully comprehend their motivation or the true meaning of the forms they represented on the stone walls.  My own recent trip to visit several of these

CAVES AND OTHER DARK PLACES: Myth, Symbol, and the "Other Side"

We are all CAVEMEN! The images and many connotations of that single word have been with us for thousands of years, even though those images have undergone many changes over time. It has taken generations, but the mental picture of the club-wielding, hairy brute in the last half century or so has gradually been converted to one of the shamanistic artist with skills and intellect beyond even our own understanding in some cases.

NEW EBOOK AVAILABILITY FOR PEOPLE OF THE STONE SERIES

We are happy to announce that all six novels in the PEOPLE OF THE STONE book series by T.C. Kuhn are now available as ebooks through KINDLE.  Books three through six are now available at the great price of $3.99 each. Additionally, Books three through six are also available at no charge to members of Kindle Unlimited through the Kindle Select Program.

KIVAS, TOWERS, AND OTHER STRUCTURES: ROUND EARTH--ROUND SKY IN THE PREHISTORIC SOUTHWEST

Having just returned from an extended trip to the Southwest  (which included a stop at Cahokia in Illinois) to revisit many of the important archeological sites in North America, it is a good time to make a few short observations, which might not have been possible for this writer to do only a few years earlier.  The intention of  acquainting myself firsthand once again with locations such as Chaco Canyon was to view them from a new perspective after nearly two decades of absence from some of these sites.  Readers of this blog will no do

THE SACRED WALL(S) OF CHACO CANYON: Great Houses and a Great Wall

Few subjects in American Archeology have received the attention in the last decades as have the amazing discoveries relating to the astronomical abilities of ancient Americans in and related to the massive stone structures of Chaco Canyon, New Mexico--the largest and possibly most complex prehistoric site in North America.  Having only just returned from my first visit to these incredible ruins in nearly thirty years and having viewed them for the first time almost exclusively with an eye towards their potential astronomical significance, one or two important observations are, I feel,

A MAYAN EQUINOX AND OTHER HEAVENLY EXPERIENCES

In the past month this writer was privileged to spend two weeks visiting several major Mayan sites in four different countries of Central America.  Among the important sites, including some with on-going excavations, that were visited were Joye de Ceran in El Salvador; Copan in Honduras;  Tikal, Uaxactun, and Yaxha in Guatemala; and Lamanai in Belize.

STONE ROADS TO NOWHERE: AVENUES OF THE DEAD OR PATHWAYS TO THE STARS

During the past half century or so archeologists and others have been both intrigued and often puzzled by the discovery of what appear to be extremely well laid out and constructed roadways in ancient landscapes from many locations and time periods around the world.  These constructions are found mainly in early agricultural periods from Peru to Guatemala and even in the American Southwest in this hemisphere, and from Neolithic England to the Middle East in Eurasia and Northwest Africa.  New research continues to reveal the possibility that even more of these so-called ancient &qu

TRADITIONAL FLINT KNAPPING VIDEO NOW AVAILABLE!!

We at PEOPLE OF THE STONE are happy to announce the introduction of our first instructional video, TRADITIONAL FLINT KNAPPING WITH TOM KUHN.   As many readers of this blog know, in addition to being the author of the six part People of the Stone saga, I was a professional archeologist and for seventeen years also owned and operated the successful RATTLER CRAFTS--a business devoted to education and providing a source of authentic prehistoric reproductions of all types, especially hand-chipped and hafted stone artifact recreations.&

PEOPLE OF THE STONE SAGA: What was attempted and what was achieved?

It has been just over a year since the final installment of The People of the Stone saga, Children of the Circle, was completed and published.  As the author who has spent six years of most of his waking hours devoted to this evolving project, I feel comfortable at last in assessing both my own motives and my interpretations of what was attempted and achieved in this ambitious undertaking along with the expectations I have for others who choose to pick up and invest their valuable time in one of these books.  It is also a good time to answer some

TRACKING THE FIRST AMERICANS: WHO WERE THEY AND WHERE DID THEY COME FROM?

Few topics have captured the imaginations and at the same time stirred controversy among Native American scholars, not to mention the Native American peoples themselves, in recent years as the on-going question of when the first ancestral Americans arrived on this continent and from where they originated.  In particular, the marshaling of new forces of science, particularly DNA, in combination with ever-expanding archeological discoveries have begun to create a somewhat clearer if still highly controversial picture of potential answers to these basic questions.  Excavations

ANNOUNCING NEW LOWER PRICING FOR BOOKS AND AMAZON EUROPE AVAILABILITY

We are happy to announce a permanent new lower price structure on all 6 books in  the People of the Stone saga.  Thanks to new publisher arrangements and quantity purchasing, the shipping included price for any novel in the series is now just 15.00 when purchased through this website.  This is a savings of 5.00 on the Amazon or other retail sales price, and each book is still personalized and signed by the author.  No better time to select your favorite period of Native American prehistory--from the end of the Ice Age to the coming of the Europeans--and beg

LOST IN SPACE: WHAT ANCIENT PEOPLES WERE SEEING IN THE SKY THAT WE CANNOT

As we become ever more aware and convinced that ancient peoples both achieved and found ways to record sophisticated celestial observations over periods of time, which may extend much farther into the past than many would once have thought, it becomes increasingly clear that some explanations for their possible reasons for this--even their near obsession in some cases--come up short of revealing what their true motivation might have been.  Each year that passes reveals new sites with complex alignments towards the heavens, re-interpretations of existing sites, and innovative ways of reading

SERPENTS OF STONE AND TREES OF BIRDS: A LITTLE ANCIENT ASTRONOMY CAN GO A LONG WAY!

As 2012 lurches towards its inevitable rendezvous with destruction, at least for those who think they read something into the Mayan calendar prophecies, it seems like a good time to refocus on the role that ancient astronomy has played in developing many new models for the interpretation of ancient myths and stories as a means by which the distant past can be revealed.  That many of these newer models of the past seem to suggest that the universality of these myths goes far deeper than we might previously have suspected should not surprise us all that much, that is if we ta

HERNANDO DE SOTO: Hero or Villain of Two Continents?

In completing the sixth and final novel of THE PEOPLE OF THE STONE saga--CHILDREN OF THE CIRCLE--the choice of including the historical figure of Hernando de Soto as a central focal point for the time period and locale of this story that details the end of Native American prehistory, especially in the eastern U.S., was not a difficult one to make.  Rarely do such clear cut historical events provide an identifiable marker for a major turning point as does the arrival of the Spanish conquistadors in North America in the 1530's.  The virtually

STONE BALL COURT IMAGERY: And You Thought Pro Football Was Life And Death!

Well over 1000 stone ball courts have been identified or excavated throughout Mesoamerica.  These important ceremonial structures have been identified in many ancient and diverse cultures from Nicaragua to Arizona in the American Southwest (Although this identification has sometimes been challenged.  Some attributed "ball courts" in the Southwest and sites in Northern Mexico that are much later in time may be converted kivas or ceremonial structures of other intent, even if converted later on, although this is also in dispu

FINDING THE FLINT: Identifying the Source Can Be Both Helpful and Easy to Do

North American prehistory owes much of its magnificent diversity to the availability and quality of any number of important source material sites found throughout much of the United States.  Every archeologist knows that being able to identify the source material of any artifact, or the distribution of sources in any collection or assemblage, can be most valuable in providing additional cultural information on any find.  After all, the individual stone artifact is often the only find that can be identified as to time period or cultural group.  In addition to dating, these artifacts can often be typed on the basis of where their makers obtained the source material, how far it moved, who else might have used it, and what was needed to produce the artifacts themselves.

STONE MARKERS ON THE HORIZON: ANCIENT ASTRONOMERS IN THE AMERICAS AND WHAT WE ARE MISSING

The level of sophistication of the knowledge of ancient peoples around the entire world when it came to studying, predicting, and recording celestial events in their skies has been a major discovery and focus of late 20th century archeology.  This study has attracted many scholars from various fields, resulting in an ever-growing body of knowledge that is difficult for even the interested professional to keep up with--and positively mind-boggling for the casually interested amateur or tourist.  In the past five months this writer has been privileged to visit some of the most important sites

FIRST CONTACT: Ending the Native American Dream and Experiment

     Like any writer coming to the end of a six year journey with a series of novels on a subject that has always been very close to my head and heart, I approach the beginning of the sixth and final novel in The People of the Stone saga with a certain amount of reluctance and a deal of regret.  However, in this case the subject matter of the final story in this 12,000 year plus journey, Children of the Circle, must also deal with the tragic consequences of the coming of the first Europeans into the central river valley systems of North America, which have

STONES OF MACHU PICCHU: The Many Faces of Myth and Mystery

Like many people, and all archeologists I assume, my recent visit to Peru was the fulfillment of a long-standing dream to witness first-hand the great site of Machu Picchu, as well as many of the other important Inca and pre-Columbian sites there.  As with most of these travelers, I was struck by the uniqueness and mystery of the world's most famous "lost city", which, much like the Grand Canyon and other such marvels of man or nature, has to be witnessed in person to be fully appreciated.  No pictures can do these places total justice (although I tried lik

CLASSIFYING STONE STRUCTURES: Man's Ancient Need to Build Something That Lasts!

Civilized man's seemingly insatiable desire to create stone monuments to his gods or to himself is as enduring as our earliest advanced cultures.  In the last thirteen months this writer has been fortunate to visit  Egypt,  Peru, and Yucatan, the source of some of the greatest and oldest monumental architecture on our planet.  As someone who has spent much of his adult life involved in ancient stonework in one fashion or another, visiting these important sites has often posed as many questions and riddles as they have answered.  Having just

MYTH MAKING: Working at the Interface of Literature and Anthropology

  During the course of five years of near continuous work on The People of the Stone saga detailing the controversial and amazing issues surrounding the peopling of North America from the end of the Ice Age to the coming of the first Europeans, the problem of frequently dealing with an unknown mythological past has often arisen, at times even dominating the storytelling process.  As this author contemplates the beginning of the sixth and final novel in this important book series, The Children of the Circle, the satisfaction of having so man

GHOST DANCERS, ELVIS, AND MESSIAHS OF ALL STRIPES: The Nagging Phenomenon of Revival Cults

     Whether they go by the name of Nativistic Movement, Revival Cults, Millenarianism, or some other recognized name, the recurrence at regular intervals around the world of such cultic practices is nothing new.  Such happenings usually involve a messianic figure preaching a return to a former way of life or spiritual belief--generally in the face of a

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