Protecting Eastern Woodlands Archaeology – You Can, Too!

Let me preface this by saying it weirds me out to ask folks for money. In large part, this is because I get weirded out when I get asked for money. Real talk — we’re grad students. We tend to be the opposite of rolling in dough. BUT, on the off chance that any of our readers have a couple of bucks to burn, I want to draw some attention to a pretty incredible, time-sensitive initiative to save what is arguably one of the best preserved earthwork sites in the Eastern Woodlands: the Junction Group in Chillicothe, Ohio.

The Junction group, for sale at auction.

The Junction group, for sale at auction.

Ok, you’re right. On the surface, it’s your typical field. But dig a little deeper, as the saying goes, and you’ve got ditches, embankments, and mounds, oh my! And, unlike many (most?) other Hopewell sites in the southern Ohio, this one has not been torched by development. As such, Junction represents an amazing opportunity to preserve a relatively intact Hopewell site, not only as a font of potential archaeological knowledge, but also a place sacred to ancient Native American peoples.

Subsurface remains of Hopewell monuments at Junction

Subsurface remains of Hopewell monuments at Junction

Anyhow, the Arc of Appalachia and a handful of other non-profits are spearheading a fundraising campaign to purchase Junction off the auction block next week. Their long term plan is to turn the property over the the National Park Service, which administers several archaeological sites under the Hopewell Culture National Historic Park. All around, an incredibly valiant effort, worthy of some publicity, and hopefully some monetary support. There you have it.

To help protect Junction, click on over to the Arc of Appalachia.

Certainly, there are bunches and bunches of other archaeological projects and sites worthy of attention, support, and preservation. However things pan out at Junction, I’d encourage any of our readers with an interest in protecting the past to keep their eyes peeled for other grassroots archaeological efforts. Depending on the situation, time, money, and energy provided by volunteers keep our projects going, ensure that our findings reach a wider audience, and hold us accountable to the many stakeholders invested in archaeological study of the past. Please call our attention to other noteworthy projects in the comments below. Eastern Woodlands archaeology by the people, for the people — let’s do this.

(All photos from the Arc of Appalachia.)

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2 comments on “Protecting Eastern Woodlands Archaeology – You Can, Too!

  1. dover1952 says:

    My professional archaeology work for the past 4 years has been focused on the archaeology of the Ross, Scioto, Pike, and Jackson Counties area in Ohio. I will look into this further and consider donating some funds.

    I hope others will do the same..

  2. Alice Wright says:

    Ooomph — what counties, archaeologically speaking! As a Southeastern-archaeologist-who-never-meant-to-study-Hopewell-but-OOPS!-we found-it-in-North-Carolina, I go all moon eyed over this region. Someday, I hope one of my Ohio archaeology buddies lets me tag along to a dig! Thanks for the support!

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