- Associated Press - Thursday, March 27, 2014

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (AP) - A prehistoric Native American sandstone statue called Sandy is now the official state artifact.

The 18-inch-high statue depicts a kneeling male figure. It was found in 1939 at a Wilson County farm along with a companion female statue. The two statues are thought to represent chiefly ancestors, either real or mythological. Similar statue pairs have been found across the South and Midwest, but Sandy and his partner are particularly noted for their realism and workmanship.

Sandy was carved between 1000 and 1350 A.D. and is from the Mississippian Period.

The statue is part of the permanent collections at the University of Tennessee’s McClung Museum of Natural History and Culture.

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