Dominguez Archaeology – Rock Pestle

Digital Image © 2008 Utah State Historical Society. All Rights Reserved.

The photograph shows archeology, a rock and mortar pestle, from the Dominguez Exploration period. The handiwork of early Spanish explorers who were evidently the first to discover gold-bearing deposits in the Henry Mountains. It was found near Straight Creek on the east flank of Mt. Pennell, Two miles above the gold mine operated early in the nineteenth century. The slab is of igneous rock into which the mortar groove was cut approx. 1×3 feet and the groove is about 4 inches wide and approx. 4 inches deep in the center of the sloping cut. The hand powered pestle was pushed through the groove in the mortar by inserting the thumbs in the end holes with the fingers firmly grasping the ends of the pestle.