Archaeological dig open to public Friday | News
CENTRAL BRIDGE - "People ask me questions. I love questions," University at Albany anthropology student Virginia Rabjohns said.
Rabjohns was enjoying answering questions Thursday while she looked for clues in what used to be a storage area for Native Americans who lived in a Schoharie County field thousands of years ago.
"I'm sure they were cooking some food we found deer bones so they were consuming deer. There are corn kernels we found so they were consuming maize which is corn," Rabjohns said.
After shaking, sifting and digging for nine years, the UAlbany and New York State Museum researchers have uncovered 200,000 artifacts at the dig in Central Bridge.
"We found it by accident. Someone told us that there happens to be some stuff in that field and we just happened to need a place to dig when that happened. So here we are nine years later," said Dr. Sean Rafferty, associate professor of anthropology at UAlbany.
The oldest treasure is a projectile point for hunting and cutting estimated to date back 2,000 years. Also unearthed was a cord-marked piece of pottery and a tinkling cone, which is part of a kettle that sheds light on when European traders first made contact with natives here.
"Changes in their household structure informs us how people's lives changed over this time. It tells us about the types of occupation they did. And excavations like this are designed to reveal these things and show us," said Dr. Christina Rieth, state archaeologist.
It showed Tom Tys and his grandson a lot about local history
"All about the Native Americans and what they used to do to stay alive," said nine-year-old Nate Tys.
"It's just so interesting how life was before the white man came and how people survived years and years ago," said Tom Tys.
The dig is open to the public Friday from 10am - 2pm, at the Pethick site on Smith Road, off Routes 7 and 30A in the Village of Central Bridge. Further information: 518-474-5877 and at www.nysm.nysed.gov.