Artifact Identification Workshop November 17 at Roscoe Village

Artifact Identification Workshop November 17 at Roscoe Village

On November 17, 2012 an artifact identification workshop will be among the other programs offered this fall at the Johnson-HumrickhouseMuseum in RoscoeVillage. HistoricRoscoeVillage is a reconstructed 1830s canal town located just west of Coshocton along the route of the Ohio-ErieCanal, about 70 miles east of Columbuson Route 16. In general the Coshocton region of east central Ohio is deeply steeped in history. For 12,000 years or more Ancient Ohioans mined the flint outcrops along the WalhondingRiver in northern CoshoctonCountyto obtain flint necessary to fashion spear points and other tools. The distinctive blue-black stone is technically known as Upper Mercer Flint but is often referred to locally as Coshocton Flint or Nellie Chert. This material was prized for its durability and superior chipping quality and has been found on archaeological sites hundreds of miles from its source. It seems to have been especially utilized during the Paleoindian period at the end of the last ice age although its use up to and through the latest periods of prehistoric activity throughout the region is well documented.

The area had been sparsely settled by pioneers in the early decades of the 18th century although soon enough the region of the Forks of the Muskingum, where the Walhonding and Tuscarawas Rivers join to form the Muskingum, would become the central focus of both missionaries and traders with both groups very much intent on conducting their own form of business with the native inhabitants. By the way, Walhonding is said to be derived from a Delaware Indian word meaning white woman referring to a captive named Mary Harris who resided in a village upstream from Coshocton at the confluence of Killbuck Creek and the WalhondingRiver. The first major European incursion into the region was in 1763 when Colonel Henry Bouquet mounted an expedition to the Forks in order to exchange captives with the Indians at the conclusion of Pontiacs Rebellion. This event also firmly fixed the site of Coshocton. After the close of the Revolutionary War pioneers from the east streamed into the Ohio Country in great numbers and permanent towns and villages began to be established. By the end of the first quarter of the 19th Century, Ohiohad become settled enough that canal systems and other transportation routes between Lake Erie and the Ohio River were being built and small ports along the way like RoscoeVillage began to appear, which brings us to the present.

Do you have some oddly shaped rocks or fossils in a box in your closet or a collection of flint points that your grandfather collected that you have always been curious about? Have you ever wondered just how someone could take a piece of raw stone and turn it into a well crafted spear point? Well, heres your chance to find out about these things and view the marvelous collections of the Johnson-HumrickhouseMuseumall in one trip. Ill be on hand and happy to identify what you have to bring in as to age and function and provide how to best preserve your item or collection.

The workshop will be between 4 and 7 on Saturday, November 17, 2012 at the Johnson-Humrickhouse Museum300 N. Whitewoman Street in Roscoe Village. Program cost is $6 for adults and $3 for students. This includes admission to the Museum. For further information call the Museum at 740-622-8710 or email [email protected] or visit their web site at


Bill Pickard


Posted November 6, 2012
Topics: Archaeology

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