|15 December 2004
Archaeologist finds ancient settlement in New Jersey
About the time Stonehenge was being built, along what is now the Millstone River (New Jersey, USA), a tribe of Native Americans set up a fall camp to prepare for the long winter months. They collected walnuts and acorns, fished in the river and hunted whitetail deer with spears, stocking up for months before moving on to more permanent winter camps. What they left behind remained buried for the next 4,000 years.
Archaeologists recently unveiled the discoveries from the Native American settlement, dug up during the past two years at a site where a developer was preparing to build an apartment complex.Thousands of artifacts were found on the site, named Windsor Mills, the most dramatic of which are now on permanent display. Among the finds: expertly carved stone spearheads, like large arrowheads, littering the site; clusters of "fire-cracked" rocks that indicate the tribe made fires for heating and cooking; carved rocks used to grind seeds and nuts; and pieces of pottery.
"Meat was a significant portion of the Native American diet at this site based on the number of dart or spearheads," said the siteís archeologist, Dr. Carolyn Dillian. She said the site was probably used seasonally by about 30 people, whose identities remain a mystery despite the evidence they left behind. They could have been direct ancestors of the Delaware tribes who populated the area 1,000 years ago.
No human remains were found, only small fragments of deer bones, and there were also no foundations of homes. Dillian said the acidic soil at the site likely has decomposed any bone remains and that the Native Americans probably "didnít use it as a cemetery site." The artifacts at the site, located where One Mile Road intersects with the Millstone River, were deemed 4,000 years old by radiocarbon dating of nuts, Dillian said.
Source: Trentonian.com (13 December 2004)
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