These pipestone elbow pipe fragments were excavated in 1986 during a highway salvage project at the Mem site, undertaken by Kansas Historical Society archeologists and Kansas Anthropological Association volunteers. The Mem site, in Marion County, is a Great Bend aspect, protohistoric Wichita village site. The soft fine grained material of pipestone enabled the pipe's maker to carve it into its elbow-like shape. The three pipe fragments on the top row were manufactured on Kansas Pipestone. Pipes were used during trade negotiations and to mark special occasions. In Kansas, these pipes are generally made by American Indians between 1650 to 1850. However, all of these pipes were broken during manufacture and were never smoked.When we think of Injuns making pots and pipes and arrowheads, we don't think of factories with QC inspectors! We're wrong.
Polistra was named after the original townsite of Manhattan (the one in Kansas). When I was growing up in Manhattan, I spent a lot of time exploring by foot, bike, and car. I discovered the ruins of an old mill along Wildcat Creek, and decided (inaccurately) that it was the remains of the original site of Polistra. Accurate or not, I've always liked the name, with its echoes of Poland (an under-appreciated friend of freedom) and stars. ==== The title icon is explained here. ==== Switchover: This 2007 entry marks a sharp change in worldview from neocon to pure populist. ===== The long illustrated story of Polistra's Dream is a time-travel fable, attempting to answer the dangerous revision of New Deal history propagated by Amity Shlaes. The Dream has 8 episodes, linked in a chain from the first. This entry explains the Shlaes connection.