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17 December 2003
Third dig planned at Cedar Creek

The archaeologists who excavated land near Cedar Creek Mall (Wisconsin, USA) are planning an in-depth dig in the area next spring or summer. Officials from the state Department of Transportation have yet to agree to the full excavation and may not until next year. In January, state officials will meet with state American Indian tribes to discuss the plan.
     But Ryan Howell from the Mississippi Valley Archaeology Center at the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse, who did the first two archaeological digs, said that he is lining up a team of archaeologists in preparation for a large excavation. "We are proceeding with the project while the state agencies review it and make their determination," Howell said. "We are on track and on schedule for the block excavation."
     A bridge is scheduled to be built over Cedar Creek to connect Eagle's Nest Boulevard with Business Highway 51. The archaeology survey is required by the National Historic Preservation Act before a federally funded construction project can occur.
     Howell and a team of archaeologists unearthed hundreds of artifacts including a copper awl, quartz pieces and part of a spear point from around 1500 BCE in September and October and have recommended to the state that enough significant artifacts were found to begin an in-depth dig.
     Since the last dig was completed and artifacts were examined, Howell said the site likely belonged to a prehistoric tribe that dates from 500 BCE to 500 CE. If further excavation is done, archaeologists likely will find more pottery, copper tools, stone knives and the remains of firepits, Howell said. And quartz pieces found date back to 3000 BCE to 2000 BCE.

Source: Wasau Daily Herald (15 December 2003)

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