| 3 September 2005
New structure found at an ancient site in Ohio
Archaeologists say they have something new to study at Fort Ancient State Memorial, the site of 2,000-year-old earthworks. A circular structure about 200 feet in diameter was detected recently during preliminary work for an erosion-control project.
State authorities said more study will be needed to determine whether the structure is an earthworks or the remains of a ditch that held a series of large posts or of some other kind of structure.
The last major discovery at the site was the remains of several homes found during excavation for a
museum and garden area built in 1998.
Ohio authorities said a magnetometer, which can show disruptions in magnetic soil particles, detected the structure below ground. Jarrod Burks, an expert on remote sensing technologies with Ohio Valley Archaeological Consultants has been credited with the find. The Worthington, Ohio company, was contracted to work with Ohio Historical Society archaeologists to survey for a major erosion-control project. The work is funded, with the help of a $255,000 federal matching grant, through the Save America's Treasures program of the National Park Service.
Fort Ancient's earthworks were built by an indigenous people called the Hopewell Indians. The earthworks are 3.5 miles long, on nearly 100 hilltop acres above the Little Miami River in Warren County.
A 1930s project by the federal Civilian Conservation Corps helped eliminate erosion and stabilize the earthworks, The site was established as an Ohio state park in 1891. Water runoff in recent years has led to the need for new anti-erosion work.
An archaeologist at the Ohio Historical Society, said the erosion-control project will continue, with alterations to avoid disturbing the newly discovered area.
Source: Associated Press, Yahoo! News (30 August 2005)
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