We find these tiny fossils quite often along the shores of Lake Michigan. They are crinoid fossils commonly referred to as “Lucky Stones” and their former living varieties are often referred to as “Sea Lilies“ because of their colorful flower like appearance. But they were actually a type of animal. They possessed long branching arms that sat atop of a single stem, sometimes reaching as high as two meters in length. They attached themselves to the sea floor or on rocks or even sunken wood. A spawning of their offspring from these bottom bound creatures may have looked like thousands of dandelion seeds blown by the wind.
Their fossils are often found broken up into individual “cheerio” shaped sections. Each circular section was stacked one over the other when they were alive which formed their entire structure. The Native Americans used their fragmented fossilized sections to make necklaces and so another common name for them is “Indian Bead”.