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Nov 29, 2023
Franklin County (MA) News Archive
The Franklin County Publication Archive Index

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Article Archives: Articles: Archaeology

Showing 25

Posted by stew - Mon, Jan 18, 2010

Gazette & Courier - Monday, September 20, 1875
News of the week

Prof. Marsh was examined Mon. by the Red Cloud Investigating Commission. The cross examination was quite rigid and left the Professor in a very embarrassing position. He was unable to sustain any of the charges from his own personal knowledge.

He was pressed particularly close to ascertain whether he had any specific evidence to sustain the charge of criminal negligence on the part of Secretary Delano. He had only hearsay evidence...

[See Google Books "The Magazine of American History with notes and queries, Volume 23" for an explanation of this issue].


Subjects: Archaeology, Crime, Criminals, Education, Food, Government, History, Literature / Web Pages, Native Americans, Politics, Science

Posted by stew - Mon, Jan 18, 2010

Gazette & Courier - Monday, September 20, 1875
News of the week

Commodore Perry's flagship, sunk in Erie Harbor 62 years ago, was raised Monday. She is to be exhibited at the Centennial Exposition.

[See the Wikipedia article on Oliver Hazard Perry]


Subjects: Archaeology, Fairs, History, Rivers / Lakes / Oceans, Transportation, War / Weaponry, Water

Posted by stew - Mon, Feb 23, 2009

Gazette & Courier - Monday, September 20, 1875
Oration of Hon. George B. Loring at Bloody Brook, Sept. 17, 1875

Oration of Hon. George B. Loring at Bloody Brook, Sept. 17, 1875 - Fellow citizens: 200 years ago an event occurred on this spot, which on account of its significance and its touching details, has passed into that long heroic line over which the mind of man is compelled to pause and ponder...At the name of Bloody Brook the men, women, and children of New England started and held their breath in horror, in that primeval time when the sickening tidings were borne on the wings of the wind as it were from hamlet to hamlet...

The sad event of the 18th of September 1675, calls upon us still to remember the trials through which our fathers passed and to rejoice over that fraternal spirit which bound them together in their day of sorrow, and watered the soil of this charming valley with the choicest blood of the sons of Essex. I stand on ground made sacred to you by the sacrifices of your hardy and devoted progenitors; but I meet here the names of Lothrop and Stevens and Hobbs and Manning and Dodge and Kimball and Trask and Tufts and Mudge and Pickering, of the three-score braves who died that you might possess this goodly land and these pleasant homes...

How would they who were familiar with the cruel warfare of the savage; whose ears had heard the shrieks of the tortured mother mingling with the groans of her dying child, and whose eyes had beheld her fear, her patience and her despair; whose highway was an Indian trail, and whose home was a frontier block-house - how would they rejoice over these sunny fields, these laughing harvests, these busy towns, these tasteful homes, this cultivated landscape adorned with these institutions of learning and religion; and how would they count their own sufferings but small when compared with the manifold blessings which have descended upon the spot made sacred with their blood?

...Deerfield two centuries ago, was on the very confines of civilization - one of the outposts of a feeble Christian people, who had hardly a foothold on this continent, and between whom and the strongholds of power and wealth and learning, rolled 3000 miles of stormy and almost unknown sea. The fate of a great and wide spread empire rested then in the hands of a few colonists scattered along the Atlantic seaboard, divided in interests and tastes, perishing continually from exposure and want, not all actuated by the highest motives, but all recognizing, as by an unerring instinct, the fundamental principle out of which was to grow the American government, and all in danger of being exterminated at any time by the "pestilence which walketh in darkness and the destruction which wasteth at noonday".

Scattered up and down the great extent of territory stretching from the Passamaquoddy Bay to the capes of Florida were but about 200,000 souls, of whom Massachusetts, with Plymouth and Maine, may have had 44,000; New Hampshire and Rhode Island, with Providence each 6000; Connecticut from 17,000 to 20,000; that is, all New England, 75,000...

These people had come largely from that "Germanic race most famed for the love of personal independence". They were not men of high estate, but they were men who possessed an inherent love of land, with all the individual honor and freedom which go along with it...

Of one colony said "Spotswood, a royalist, a High churchman, a traveler", "I have observed here less swearing and profaneness, less drunkenness and debauchery, less uncharitable feuds and animosities, and less knaverys and villanys than in any part of the world where my lot has been"...

In all their customs they were obliged to exercise the utmost simplicity and they voluntarily regulated their conduct by those formal rules, which, in their day, constituted the Puritan’s guide through the world. We are told, as an illustraton of their character and manners, that by the laws of the Plymouth Colony, in 1651, "dancing at weddings was forbidden". In 1660, one William Walker was imprisoned one month for courting "a maid without the leave of her parents".

In 1675, because "there is manifest pride appearing in our streets", the "wearing of long hair or periwigs", and so "superstitious ribands, used to tie up and decorate the hair were forbidden under severe penalty"; the keeping of Christmas was also forbidden "because it was a popish custom". In 1677 an act was passed "to prevent the profaneness of turning the back upon the public worship before it was finished and the blessing pronounced".

Towns were directed to erect a cage near the meeting house, and in all this all offenders against the sanctity of the Sabbath were confined. At the same time children were directed to be placed in a particular part of the meeting house, apart by themselves, and tything-men were ordered to be chosen, whose duty it shall be to take care of them. So strict were they in their observance of the Sabbath that "John Atherton, a soldier of Col. Tyng’s Company", was fined 40 shillings for wetting a piece of an old hat to put into his shoes, which chafed his feet on the march; and those who neglected to attend meeting for 3 months were publicly whipped.

Even in Harvard College students were whipped for gross offenses in the Chapel, in presence of students and professors, and prayers were had before and after the infliction of the punishment. As the settlers of Deerfield are described as being of "sober and orderly conversation", we may suppose that these laws and customs were here rigidly enforced.

[Here follows a section on "subsistence and diet of your ancestors". Also talks about how they were good farmers, fishermen and readers]...

...Possessed evidently of a common origin, for "between the Indians of Florida and Canada the difference was scarcely perceptible", they were divided into tribes, which differed from each other mainly in their fighting capacity, and the vigor with which they roamed from place to place; and they were liable at any time to be swept off by disease, or exterminated by war, or absorbed by other and more powerful tribes.

In language, the North American Indian was limited by the material world, an abstract idea finding no birthplace in his brain and no expression on his tongue. "In marriage the Indian abhorred restraint, and from Florida to the S. Lawrence polygamy was permitted". Divorce meant merely desertion. The wife was a slave. Domestic government was unknown. The Indian youth grew up a warrior, adorned with vermilion and eagle’s feather, as fleet of foot as the deer, and as tolerant of hunger as the wolf; the Indian girl grew up a squaw, degraded and squalid and servile.

A rude agriculture, resulting in a weedy corn crop, and a few squashes and beans, was the Indian’s, or rather the Indian woman’s occupation; he had neither trade nor manufactures. "There can be no society without government; but among the Indian tribes on the soil of our republic, there was not only no written law - there was no traditionary [sic] expression of law; government rested on opinion and usage and the motives to the usage were never imbodied [sic] in language; they gained utterance only in the fact, and power only from opinion...

The Indian had a government without laws; a State without institutions; a church without faith, or creed, or head; a town without schoohouse or meeting house; a punitive system without jails or gibbets; a history based on tradition; a religion based on superstition; he was ignorant of the ownership of land; and knew nothing of a system of inheritance.

As in peace he was an idler - so in war he was a marauder. An organized army was to him unknown. He fought in small bands, seldom over 50 in number, to surprise and slaughter. He pursued, and killed, and scalped. He had neither commissariat nor hospital. He fought his enemy in the rear and in ambush; and he tortured and roasted and devoured his captives. These were the national characteristics which our fathers found on this continent.

Nor did their attempts to modify and humanize and Christianize them meet with much success. The Indian could be tamed, but he was the Indian still...Neither John Eliot nor Roger Williams was able to change essentially the habits and character of the New England tribes..."They are unspeakably indolent and slothful; they deserve little gratitude; they seem to have no sentiments of generosity, benevolence or goodness".

The Moravian Loskiel could not change their character...In New Hampshire and elsewhere schools for Indian children were established; but as they became fledged they all escaped, refusing to be caged. Harvard College enrolls the name of an Algonquin youth among her pupils; but the college parchment could not close the gulf between the Indian character and the Anglo American.

The copper colored men are characterized by a moral inflexibility, a rigidity of attachment to their hereditary customs and manners. The birds and brooks, as they chime forth their unwearied canticles, chime them ever to the same ancient melodies; and the Indian child, as it grows up, displays a propensity to the habits of its ancestors...

The trouble lay deeper. Year after year the Indian discovered an irreconcilable difference between himself and the stranger...When he entered the home of the settler, he discovered that the joys of the fireside could never be found in the group squatted beneath the shelter of the wigwam. He felt the antagonism - and his soul burned within him. The strife was not for land...It was for supremacy. And as revenge is stronger than ambition, and hate is stronger than avarice, so the war raged with unspeakable fury, and was as cruel as the passions of a desperate savage could make it.

The great contest which grew out of this antagonism, and lasted more than a year, unabated either by the heat of summer or the frosts of winter, threatening destruction to the New England colonies, was known as Philip’s War. With the story of this conflict you are all familiar. The peaceful death of Massasoit at a good old age, after a long life of friendly relations with the Plymouth and Massachusetts Bay colonies; the sadder death of his son Alexander, worried out of life by the failure of his intrigues against the colony, and the exposure of his meanness and his crimes; the gradual development of the worst of passions in the breast of Philip, and his passage from treachery to war are all fresh in the memory of all who have traced the hard path which our fathers traveled in the work of settling these shores.

The war which began in Swanzey on the 24th of June, 1675, reached this spot on the 18th of September - three months of murder, and fire, and all the bloody horrors of savage warfare. At the time the war broke out Deerfield had been settled 10 years, or had been deeded for the purposes of settlement to John Pynchon that length of time. It was then, as it is now, one of the most delightful spots in New England...

And here in the luxurience of that natural beauty, and in the wealth of wood and stream, the Indian found his favorite resort. In this town and in the towns of Hadley and Hatfield he mustered a numerous and a powerful tribe. And upon these lands purchased by the settlers, with titles confirmed by the court, the whites and Indians lived together in peace for years. It is amazing with what rapidity the war, once opened, spread from village to village, and from tribe to tribe in this wilderness...

The Pocumtucks had received their orders - and in a day had stepped from the blessings of peace to the misery of war. having promsied to deliver up their arms, on suspicion that they might misuse them, they broke their promise, fled to Sugar loaf Hill, engaged with Captains Beers and Lothrop commanding the English here, lost 26 of their number, and then sought shelter under the standard of King Philip...

Deerfield too was abandoned; and the attempt to secure a quantity of wheat which had just been partially threshed by the farmers there before their flight, resulted in the massacre which still thrills me with horror, and the anniversary of which we have met to commemorate...From behind hundreds of trees the savages poured their deadily [sic] fire. At the first volley many were killed, and the remainder were panic stricken...Lothrop...was among the first to fall. The savages, numbering nearly 700, "rushed upon the defenceless men, and the work of slaughter was soon complete.

But 6 or 7 Englishmen escaped to tell the tale, of whom one had been shot and tomahawked and left for dead, and another forced his way through the yelling ranks of the savages with the but [sic] of his musket...

While the Indians were employed in mangling, scalping and stripping the dying and the dead, Captain Moseley, who, as has been observed, was ranging the woods, hearing the report of musketry, hastened by a forced march to the relief of his brethren. The Indians, confiding in their superior numbers, taunted him as he advanced, and dared him to the contest. Moseley came on with firmness, repeatedly charged through them, and destroyed a large number with the loss on his side of but 2 killed and 11 wounded...

A quantity of bones lately found in that quarter is very probably the remains of the Indians who fell there at the close of the action. The united English force encamped for the night at Deerfield. They returned in the morning to bury the dead and found a party of the Indians upon the field stripping the bodies of their victims. These they quickly dispatched, and the remains of the brave young men, or some portion of them, were committed to the earth near the spot which we have this day consecrated anew to their memory.

The stream on whose banks they fell, and whose water ran red with their blood, has been called from that day, in memory of the disaster, Bloody Brook...[Two more entire columns follow, but they are quite blurry and unreadable].

Subjects: Archaeology, Barber / Hair, Birds, Business Enterprises, Cemeteries, Children, Connecticut, Connecticut River, Courtship, Crime, Criminals, Dance, Deerfield (MA), Diseases, Divorce, Drunkenness, Economics, Education, English (and England), Eye, Family, Farmers & Farming / Flowers, Fires, Fishes and Fishing, Food

Posted by stew - Wed, Feb 4, 2009

Gazette & Courier - Monday, August 30, 1875
An old story

The following was told me by the late Theodore Hoyt of Bernardston, father of Richard Hoyt. Mr. Hoyt’s father was Jonathan Hoyt, born in the old Indian House at Deerfield and son of landlord Hoyt. He built a house upon his father’s land at West Deerfield, probably around 1760, where he lived to old age, and sent out into the world a large family of children and grand-children. Here Mr. T. Hoyt was born.

The family were obliged to cross the Deerfield river to attend the public meetings of the town, and to the post office and store. Much of the time the river was crossed in a wooden canoe, which was kept near the old cemetery , as the river at this time was making its way very near its sacred enclosure, and it was feared that it would disturb the sleeping inmates.

Mr. Hoyt was returning from the village, and had entered a ravine on the farm now owned by Salmon Chapman, when a raccoon started up and ran. Mr. Hoyt went for him. He said in those days they did not let any thing disturb them. The raccoon ran under some rubbish and roots of trees, which he began to remove, when he saw a large copper kettle, which he thought was taken by the Indians from the village of King Philip’s time, or in 1704, and buried there.

The old kettle was taken home, but a large hole was found in it, making it unfit for use; but neighbor Deacon Jehiel Jones, grandfather of G.W. Jones and Charles Jones, gave him an old kettle to mend it with, and it did good service for many years. Near where the kettle was found, the Indians had a cemetery and an armory, or a spot for burying arrowheads and other war implements.

The Indians were mostly buried in a sitting posture. This brought the head near the top of the ground. Mr. Hoyt said, when they plowed this land, the plows would cut off and turn out the Indians’ skulls. Oh, what a harvest Mr. Sheldon and Dr. Hitchcock would have gathered from that field! - enough to have filled several shelves of their cabinet.

This farm was then owned by Mr. Hoyt’s brother, father of S.B. Hoyt of Bernardston. The present owner, Mr. Chapman, found deposited in a cavity, 60 or 70 arrow heads, showing it to be a place of deposit. These, we are sorry to say, fell under the eye of Dr. Hitchcock a little too soon after they were found, and are now deposited in the Indian cabinet at Amherst College, with a promise to be returned to Deerfield and deposited in the Memorial Hall when completed. (N. Hitchcock)

Subjects: Animals / Reptiles, Archaeology, Bernardston (MA), Births, Cemeteries, Deerfield (MA), Dreams / Sleep, Education, Eye, Family, Farmers & Farming / Flowers, Hampshire / Hampden Counties, History, Hotels, Households, Lost and Found, Mail, Mourning Customs, Museums, Native Americans, Pocumtuck Valley Memorial Assn, Racism, Rivers / Lakes / Oceans, Royalty, Stores, Retail

Posted by stew - Sat, Jan 3, 2009

Gazette & Courier - Monday, August 16, 1875
Find in Greece

In clearing away the refuse from the ancient silver mines of Laurium, in Greece, a large number of seeds were found, unknown to modern science, but described in the writings of Pliny. The seeds took root, budded and blossomed, bearing beautiful yellow flowers, after a burial of at least 1500 years.

Check out Laurium on Wikipedia.

Subjects: Archaeology, Curiosities and Wonders, Farmers & Farming / Flowers, Garbage, History, Literature / Web Pages, Mines and Mineral Resources, Science, Europe, Jewelry / Gold / Silver / Treasure

Posted by stew - Sun, Dec 21, 2008

Gazette & Courier - Monday, August 9, 1875
Ancient cave dwellings in Arizona

[See Google Books "Marvels of the New West", p. 137, by William Makepeace Thayer].

Subjects: Archaeology, Art, Native Americans

Posted by stew - Mon, Dec 15, 2008

Gazette & Courier - Monday, July 26, 1875
A prehistoric relic in California

A piece of fossilized oak has been found in the South Fork Tunnel, near Forest City, Sierra County, Calif., which is very evidently a trace of prehistoric man. It had been shaped, while in the woody state, into a block some 20 inches long by 14 wide and 5 deep, with squarely cut edges. The spot where it was found is 1800 ft. from the mouth of the tunnel and at a vertical depth from the surface of the mountain of 800 ft.

Other discoveries pointing to the existence of man in remote ages have been made in various sections of the course of the great river which must once have flowed across the present course of the Sierra River system. In 1858 a number of fossilized pine logs, 7 ft. long and in diameter that had been neatly sawed and piled up together, were found in the Allegheny Tunnel under the bed of the "Old Blue River". The recently found relic has been given to the California State University.

Subjects: Archaeology, Education, History, Lost and Found, Native Americans, Rivers / Lakes / Oceans, Trees, Work, Geography

Posted by stew - Mon, Dec 8, 2008

Gazette & Courier - Monday, July 12, 1875
Another mastodon found

A few days ago, while some laborers were at work on some excavations near Big Prairie in Monroe county, Michigan, they came upon a quantity of bones, forming the skeleton of a mastodon, which were examined and brought to Monroe. One of the tusks was 11 ft. in length and 7 inches in diameter at its smallest extremity, where a portion seems to have been broken off.

Several teeth were found in a greater or less degree of preservation, which measured 6 inches in diameter, the largest weighing 5 pounds. One of the ribs was nearly 8 ft. long. and the entire skeleton must have been 20 or 30 ft. in length. The men were compelled to abandon the excavation on account of the water, but pumps have been procured, and an attempt will be made to recover more of the remains.

Subjects: Animals / Reptiles, Archaeology, Curiosities and Wonders, Museums, Rivers / Lakes / Oceans, Work

Posted by stew - Mon, Dec 8, 2008

Gazette & Courier - Monday, July 12, 1875
Shelburne Falls

From the old sand hill by the depot, over 90,000 cubic yards of earth were dug up and loaded by the steam shovel.

Subjects: Archaeology, Shelburne and Shelburne Falls (MA), Trains, Work

Posted by stew - Sat, Dec 6, 2008

Gazette & Courier - Monday, July 5, 1875
Turners Falls

Mr. Stoughton and Dr. Field disposed of many valuable specimens of bird tracks and Indian relics to Prof. Marsh last week.

Subjects: Animals / Reptiles, Archaeology, Birds, Education, History, Montague (MA), Museums, Native Americans, Turners Falls (MA)

Posted by stew - Sat, Dec 6, 2008

Gazette & Courier - Monday, July 5, 1875
Shelburne Falls

O.R. Maynard, Cashier, is daily adding to his collection of antiquities, and he is always glad to see those who have anything old and odd to sell or donate. A recent addition is a tea cup 150 years old, the identical one through which some of the tea which was thrown overboard into Boston harbor by the Revolutionary patriots, was put and secreted after it had been scraped out of the sand. These relics were obtained from Mr. Warriner King of King Corner, Hawley. He is about 87 years old and his sister is most 86. She is much spryer than many women of 60, and they are really the nicest old people in all the region round about.

Subjects: Archaeology, Beverages, Boston (MA), Curiosities and Wonders, Family, Hampshire / Hampden Counties, History, Museums, Old Age, Pottery / Crockery, Rivers / Lakes / Oceans, Sales, Shelburne and Shelburne Falls (MA), War / Weaponry, Hawley (MA)

Posted by stew - Thu, Dec 4, 2008

Gazette & Courier - Monday, July 5, 1875

The ancient city of Caetebriga, in Portugal, submerged by the sea with all its inhabitants in the 5th century of our era, is to be disentombed. The sea has within some years receded, and left the buildings covered with sand, but free from its irruptions. The city was first Phoenician, then Carthaginian, then Roman, and excavation is expected to reveal remains contemporary with Dido. [Tried to trace this one, without success].

Subjects: Archaeology, Italians, Rivers / Lakes / Oceans, Europe

Posted by stew - Wed, Dec 3, 2008

Gazette & Courier - Monday, July 5, 1875
Gill, or the old shad fishery

Yielding to repeated solicitations to write something concerning old times at the falls, I copy from my introductory note to the "Shad fishers", given at Turners Falls last winter, hoping it may interest some of your readers. J.D.C.

...With the exception, perhaps, of the Columbia River in Oregon, there never was a more prolific shad and salmon fishery on this continent than this of ours in the years that are gone.

From time immemorial these Falls were the resort of the Indians, to whom the bounty of heaven furnished a superabundance of nutritive and luscious food in the season; and the fact that something like a permanent settlement and home was here made by these nomads of the wilds who are usually here today and gone tomorrow tells the whole story of bounteous supply. Our plows crumble their bones and turn up their rude implements of the chase and warfare; and almost every farmer of the vicinity has his private collection of these relics, picked up from time to time during his agricultural operations.

An old proverb, derived from the Indians, was common among their white successors, to the effect that when the shad tree was in blossom, the fish were in the river, and that they remained prime and palatable while the bough showed white. The fishermen, red and white, are gone; the fish are gone; but the little shad tree still shows us its token annually in our woods and on our river braes.

In the month of June, after spawning, the fish become less firm in flesh, and the "last run" were thin and emaciated. "Poor as a June shad" was another proverb common among the fishers, and still heard and repeated among our river people.

The fishing of the Indian was ended on the morning of the 18th of May, 1676, 199 years ago next May, when Captain Turner cut them off by surprise, and destroyed their settlement. It was one of the delights of my boyhood to spend odd leisure hours and winters in the society of some of our oldest inhabitants -- participating in the scenes enacted here at the Falls, and gather a fund of story and anecdote from their recollections. These old men are all departed’ but I have the pleasure of thinking that I have been able to rescue from oblivion many facts and incidents of interest in the olden times in this locality....

So very plentiful and so easily procured were the fish here in the days of our fathers that the people were absolutely ashamed to have the fact patent that they made much account of shad as an article of food. The fish were styled "Gill pork", and many a cautious housewife, surprised by the approach of a neighbor while in the act of cooking a fine fish, had thrown it behind the back log to hide it from his observation. Tempera mutanta!

So pure were the waters of our river in those early days that the fish were of the finest quality, and much larger than those taken in the North River, the Potomac, or any other of our waters. In the fishing season the falls were resorted to by people from circumjacent towns, and from the western hills, with teams, for the purchase of their annual supply of fish for salting. The usual price to these customers was 3 coppers apiece -- equal to about 2 cents. A barrel of A no. 1 shad was no costly thing in those days. I can show the antiquarian a fine meadow in Gill, worth now $100 per acre, which was originally purchased by one of our old fishers for the avails of one day’s fishing at the Falls.

Attempts are now making by artificial building and the construction of fish ways to induce the fish to ascend the river and multiply as of yore; and you will all join most heartily with me in wishes for success to the efforts making...The maratime [i.e. maritime] operations on the lower sections of the river, the poisonous and discoloring matter cast into its waters by the numerous mills and factories on its borders, with other obstructions, present to my mind an almost insuperable bar to our successful efforts in that line.

The days of our fishing are ended, and the numbers we shall see ascend to our old fishing grounds will be as a struggling and feeble rear guard to a mighty army already gone before...The building of the dam at Holyoke finished the business and cut off our people from their "fish rights"...

Subjects: Archaeology, Business Enterprises, Connecticut River, Conservation of Natural Resources, Economics, Farmers & Farming / Flowers, Fishes and Fishing, Food, Gill (MA), Hampshire / Hampden Counties, History, Horses, Households, Literature / Web Pages, Meat, Montague (MA), Native Americans, Natural Resources, Old Age, Poisoning, Rivers / Lakes / Oceans, Trees, Vendors and Purchasers, War / Weaponry, Women

Posted by stew - Mon, Dec 1, 2008

Gazette & Courier - Monday, June 14, 1875
Hampshire County items

A few days since, Dr. Hitchcock received a box containing quite a quantity of curiosities from Western Africa sent him by Rev. Mr. Claflin, a missionary there. The most valuable of these specimens is the skull of an African warrior of the Mendi tribe [i.e. Mende http://www.footnote....width=290&height=400 ], which has good facial angle, unusual prominence and width of cheek bones, and is finely formed for anatomical purposes. Though wishing for a long time to obtain such a skull, Dr. Hitchcock has never before succeeded because of the superstition of the African tribes.

Subjects: African-Americans / Blacks, Archaeology, Curiosities and Wonders, Hampshire / Hampden Counties, Mail, Racism, Religion, Robbers and Outlaws, Science, War / Weaponry, Superstition

Posted by stew - Mon, Dec 1, 2008

Gazette & Courier - Monday, June 14, 1875
News about home: Greenfield items

Some 30 or more young ladies from Mount Holyoke Seminary, arrived in town last Tues. morning, and were conveyed to Turners Falls, where they went up the river, examined Mr. Stoughton's bird tracks, and spent the day in the region with much pleasure and profit.

Subjects: Amusements, Archaeology, Birds, Connecticut River, Education, Greenfield (MA), Hampshire / Hampden Counties, Montague (MA), Rivers / Lakes / Oceans, Transportation, Turners Falls (MA), Women

Posted by stew - Mon, Dec 1, 2008

Gazette & Courier - Monday, June 14, 1875
News of the week

A Westchester county (N.Y.) farmer, while plowing near Yorktown the other day, came upon a large stone, under which were found two bushels of cannon balls and a no. of knives and bayonets. They were near a well dug and used by the American soldiers. The ground was being plowed for the first time, and the appearance of the balls and knives indicated that they had lain there undisturbed for a hundred years.

Subjects: Archaeology, Beverages, Farmers & Farming / Flowers, History, War / Weaponry, Work

Posted by stew - Mon, Dec 1, 2008

Gazette & Courier - Monday, June 14, 1875
News of the week

A citizen of Des. Arc, Arkansas [see Wikipedia], while at work in the forest the other day, observed the initials "J. C." cut in a tree and in the ground nearby a depression. Thinking the two circumstances meant something, he went to digging, and a jar containing near 3 gallons of silver and a diamond was the result of the search. The money amounted to a little over $1400. The indications were that the money had been buried but a few years. [I bet poor old J.C. was ticked!].

Subjects: Archaeology, Economics, Literature / Web Pages, Lost and Found, Work, Leyden (MA), Jewelry / Gold / Silver / Treasure

Posted by stew - Mon, Dec 1, 2008

Gazette & Courier - Monday, May 31, 1875

Dr. William Clark, paleontologist of the Smithsonian Institute for Tennessee, has found, 16 ft. below the top of some mounds near Franklin, some chalk beads, once glazed red, two copper bobbins with hempen or flaxen thread around them, and the representation of an idol indented on copper plate metal, much corroded. He says they must have been the work of Aztecs, or at least, of civilized people.

Subjects: Archaeology, History, Latin America, Lost and Found, Mourning Customs, Museums, Native Americans, Religion, Work, Jewelry / Gold / Silver / Treasure

Posted by stew - Mon, Dec 1, 2008

Gazette & Courier - Monday, May 24, 1875
News of the week

A mastodon http://www.geology.1...ol/htm/doc-full.html skeleton weighing 1600 pounds, the largest ever found, has been sent to Yale College from Otisville in Orange County, N.Y., where it was dug up two years ago.

Subjects: Animals / Reptiles, Archaeology, Education, History, Transportation

Posted by stew - Mon, Dec 1, 2008

Gazette & Courier - Monday, May 24, 1875
Hampshire County items

A rare mine of last year's reservoir relics has lately been uncovered at Haydenville, where Superintendent Hanson of the cotton mill set a number of workmen digging over a pile of stones below the mill dam. From it they have taken an almost inconceivable variety of things - a steam engine and boiler, silver bell, silver cups, clocks, sewing machines, gold pens, harnesses, the brass shop bell, emblems of Free Masonry, brass pumps, shafting, etc. Pictures that have lain a year under the ground are quite distinct. A cut glass altar from the lodge came over the dam and was taken out whole from under tons of stone; a spy glass, too, was perfect, though filled with sand.

Subjects: Archaeology, Business Enterprises, Clubs, Curiosities and Wonders, Disasters, Freemasonry, Glass / Windows, Rivers / Lakes / Oceans, Work, Jewelry / Gold / Silver / Treasure

Posted by stew - Mon, Dec 1, 2008

Gazette & Courier - Monday, May 24, 1875
News of the week

A nugget of copper, 28 per cent pure ore, weighing 6000 pounds, is on exhibit at St. Louis. It came from the Lake Superior region, where it was taken from an ancient digging. The mass, when found, had evidently been detached from its bed by ancient miners, whose stone hammers, in great numbers, were found in the mine. . [See Google Books "The Science record", 1876, p. 65, for more particulars on this boulder].

Subjects: Archaeology, Curiosities and Wonders, Fairs, History, Literature / Web Pages, Lost and Found, Mines and Mineral Resources, Native Americans, Rivers / Lakes / Oceans, Science

Posted by stew - Mon, Jun 26, 2006

Gazette & Courier - Monday, February 15, 1875
The mound builders

The mound builders - After the last mammoth was slain, it is very probable that many centuries passed before the http://www.harvestfi...Links/02/Chap10.html mound builders came to occupy the soil where these animals had been. The mound builders were a race of men who never saw the mammoth at play [or they would have] carved or painted his likeness, as they did those of the birds and beasts they knew...Unfortunately we do not know what they looked like, and as they wrote no books we do not know what language they spoke. All that we know of them is from the wonderful works of industry and skill that they left behind, and especially from certain great mounds of earth they built. It is from the great works that they derive their name. One of the most remarkable of these mounds is to be seen in Adams County, Ohio. It represents an immense snake a thousand feet long and 5 ft. thick, laying along a bluff that rises above a stream. There you can trace all the curves and outlines of the [?] and a tail with a triple coil...Sometimes they are shaped like animals, sometimes like men...In other places there are many small mounds, arranged in a straight line, at distances nearly equal, and extending for many miles. These are supposed to have been used for sending signals from station to station across the country. Then in other places there are signal mounds, sometimes 60 ft. high, sometimes 90, with steps leading up to the top, which is flat, and sometimes includes from 1 to 5 acres of ground. These mounds are scattered all down the valley of the Mississippi, and along many of the tributary streams. There are thousands of them, large or small, within the single state of Ohio. They are not made of earth alone, for some of them show brick work and stone work here and there, though earth is always the chief material. Some of them have chambers within, and the remains of wooden walls, and sometimes charred wood is found on top, as if fires had been kindled there...In Central America there are similar mounds, except that those have on their tops the remians of stone temples and palaces. So it is supposed that the higher mounds of the Mississippi Valley may have been built for purposes of worship, and that although their summits are now bare, yet the charred wood may be the remains of sacrificial fires, or of wooden temples that were burned long ago. It is certain that these mound builders were in some ways well advanced in civilization. All their earth works show more or less of engineering skill. They vary greatly in shape; they show the square, the circle, the octagon, the ellipse, and sometimes all these figures are combined in one series of works. But the circle is always a true circle and the square a true square; and moreover there are many squares that measure exactly 1080 ft. on a side, and this shows that the mound builders had some definite standard of measurement. There have been found in these temples many tools and ornaments, made of copper, silver and valuable stones. There are axes, chisels, knives, bracelets and beads; there are pieces of thread and of cloth, and gracefully ornamented vases of pottery. The mound builders know how to model in clay a variety of objects, such as birds, quadrapeds and human faces. They practiced farming, though they had no domestic animals to help them. They had neither horses nor oxen nor carts, so that all the vast amount of earth required for these mounds must have been carried in baskets or skins; and this shows that their population must have been very numerous or they never could have attempted so much. They mined for copper near Lake Superior, where their deserted mines may still be seen. In one of these mines there is a mass of copper weighing nearly 6 tons, partly raised form the bottom, and supported on wooden legs, now nearly decayed. It was evidently being removed to the top of the mine, nearly 30 ft. above, and the stone and copper tools of the miners were found lying about, as if the men had just gone away. Now when did this race of ancient mound builders live? There is not a line of their writing left, so far as it is known; nor is any distinct tradition about them. But there is one sure proof that they lived very long ago. At the mouth of this very mine just described there are trees nearly 400 years old, growing on earth that was thrown out in digging the mines. Of course the mine is older than the trees. On a mound at Marietta, Ohio, there are trees 800 years old. The mounds must, of course, be as old as that, and nobody knows how much older. It is very probable that this mysterious race may have built these great works more than a thousand years ago. It is very natural to ask whether the mound builders were the ancestors of the present American Indians. It does not seem at all likely that they were, because the habits of the two races were so very different. Most Indian tribes show nothing of the skill and industry required for these great works. The only native tribes that seem to have a civilization of their own are a certain race called Pueblo Indians (meaning village Indians) in New Mexico. These tribes live in vast stone buildings, holding sometimes as many as 5000 people. These buildings are usually placed on the summit of hills, and have walls so high as only to be reached by ladders. The Pueblo Indians dress nicely, live in families, practice various arts, and are utterly different from the roving tribes farther north. But after all, the style of building of even the Pueblo Indians are wholly unlike anything we know of the mound builders; for the mound builders do not seem to have erected stone buildings, nor do the Pueblo Indians build lofty mounds. Perhaps this singular people will always remain a mystery. They may have come from Asia, or have been the descendents of Asiatics accidentally cast on the American shore. Within the last 100 years, no less than 15 Japanese vessels have been driven across the Pacific Ocean by storms and wrecked on the Pacific coast of North America, and this may have happened as easily a thousand years ago as a hundred. It is certain that some men among the mound builders had reached the sea in their travels, for on some of their carved pipes there are representations of the seal and of the manati, or sea cow - animals to which they could only have seen by traveling very far to the east or west, or else by descending the Mississippi River to its mouth. But we know neither whence they came nor whither they went. Very few human bones have been found among the mounds; and those found had almoost crumbled into dust. We only know that the mound builders came and built wonderful works, and then made way for another race, of whose origin we know almost as little (Young Folks' History of the United States).

Subjects: Animals / Reptiles, Archaeology, Art, Birds, Cemeteries, Charlemont (MA), Children, Chinese, Curiosities and Wonders, Family, Farmers & Farming / Flowers, Fires, History, Horses, Households, Japanese, Latin America, Literature / Web Pages, Lost and Found, Mines and Mineral Resources, Names, Native Americans, Old Age, Pottery / Crockery, Racism

Posted by stew - Tue, May 2, 2006

Gazette & Courier - Monday, February 1, 1875
Measurement of ancient cities

Measurement of ancient cities - Ninevah was 14 miles long, 8 miles wide and 46 miles around, with a wall 100 ft. high, and thick enough for 3 http://www.mcdonald....c/issue1/nineveh.htm chariots abreast. Babylon was 50 miles within the walls, which were 75 feet thick and 100 ft. high, with 100 brazen http://www.cs.cornel...n/pages/page_23.html gates . The Temple Diana at Ephesus was 420 ft. to the support of the roof; it was 100 years in building. The largest of the pyramids was 481 ft. in height, and 853 ft. on the sides. The base covered 11 acres. the stones are about 60 ft. in length, and the layers are 208. It employed 350,000 men in building. The labyrinth of Egypt contains 300 chambers and 12 halls. Thebes , in Egypt, presents ruins 27 miles around, and contained 250,000 citizens and 100,000 slaves. The Temple of Delphos [also seen as the http://history.boise...civ/persian/13.shtml Temple of Delphi ] was so rich in donations that it was plundered of $50,000,000 and the Emperor Nero carried away from it 200 statues. The walls of Rome were 13 miles around.

Subjects: Archaeology, Crime, Criminals, Curiosities and Wonders, History, Italians, Rich People, Robbers and Outlaws, Royalty, Statues, Transportation, Urbanization / Cities, Work, Arabs, Europe, Architecture / Construction

Posted by stew - Sun, Jan 15, 2006

Gazette & Courier - Monday, January 11, 1875
The Shah’s jewels

The http://www.worldisro.../73022/photo780.html Shah’s jewels - The shah’s strongbox consists of a small room 20 x 14 ft., reached by a steep stair, and entered through a very small door. Here, spread upon carpets, his http://www.worldisro...s/73022/photo27.html jewels , valued at 7,000,000 pounds. Chief among the lot is the Kalanian Crown, shaped like a flower pot, and topped by a uncut http://www.geocities...e/1406/jewel/19.html ruby as large as a http://www.geocities...e/1406/jewel/20.html hen’s egg , and supposed to have come from Siam.

Near the http://www.worldisro...73022/photo1299.html crown are two lamb skin caps, adorned with splendid http://www.geocities...e/1406/jewel/10.html aigrettes of http://www.worldisro...s/73022/photo29.html diamonds , and before them lie trays of http://www.worldisro...73022/photo1294.html pearl , ruby, and http://www.worldisro...s/73022/photo26.html emerald , http://www.geocities...e/1406/jewel/14.html necklaces , and hundreds of rings.

Mr. Eastwick, who examined the whole, states that in addition to these there are gauntlets and http://www.geocities...e/1406/jewel/11.html belts covered with pearls and diamonds , and conspicuous among them the Kalanian belt, almost a foot deep, weighing, perhaps, 18 lbs., and one complete mass of pearls, diamonds , emeralds and rubies. One or two http://www.worldisro...s/73022/photo72.html scabbards of swords are said to be worth a quarter of a million each.

There is also the finest http://www.geocities...e/1406/jewel/82.html turquoise in the world, 3 or 4 inches long, and without a flaw; and "I’ remarked a smaller one of unique beauty, 3/8 of an inch broad; the color was lovely, and almost as refreshing to the eyes as Persian poets pretend. There are also many http://www.geocities...e/1406/jewel/66.html sapphires as big as marbles, and http://www.geocities...e/1406/jewel/16.html rubies and pearls the size of nuts, and I am certain that I counted nearly 100 emeralds from half an inch square to 1 3/4 inches long, and an inch broad. In the sword scabbard, which is covered with diamonds , there is not, perhaps, a single stone smaller than the nail of a man’s little finger.

Lastly, there is an emerald as big as a walnut, covered with the names of the http://www.worldisro...73022/photo1634.html kings who have possessed it. The ancient Persians prized the emerald above all gems, and particularly those from Egypt. Their goblets decorated with these stones, were copied by the Romans. The Shah also possesses a pearl worth 50,000 pounds. But the most attractive of all the Persian stones is the turquoise, which is inlaid by the native lapidaries with designs and inscriptions with great effect and expertise. The best come from Nish[?]r in http://www.gardenvis...ultaniehtotehran.htm Khorassan , whose mines ornamented the gold armor of the Persians, so much admired by the Greeks.

Chardin records that in the treasury at Ipsahan [probably http://www.jewishenc...p?artid=292&letter=I Ispahan ] he saw "in each chamber the stones in the rough piled high on the floor like heaps of grain, filling innumerable leather bags". As with the King of Burmah [i.e. King of Burma] and the rubies, the turquoises of Persia are always first inspected by the Shah. They are divided into two classes, according to the position in which they are found. The first, called sengui, or stony, are incrusted in the matrix, and have to be removed by means of a hammer; the second are taken from the alluvial deposits, and though larger are of less value than the former, which are of a deep blue color. Although the lord of Lords contented himself with taking the least valuable gems of his incomparable collection on his recent tour in the West, he carried no less than 200 talismans, which, while they may be poor in appearance, possess limitless value in the eyes of Persians.

Among others, there was a fine pointed star, supposed to be worn by Rooston, and believed to have the power of making conspirators at once confess their crimes. Around his neck the Shah wore a http://www.oldandsol...cious-stones-1.shtml cube of amber , reported to have fallen from heaven in the time of Mahomet, and to confer on its owners invulnerability. Most precious of all, however, was a little casket of gold studded with emeralds, and said to have the remarkable property of rendering the royal wearer invisible so long as he remains celibate.

Subjects: Archaeology, Astronomy, Birds, Criminals, Economics, Eye, Farmers & Farming / Flowers, Food, Italians, Literature / Web Pages, Luck, Magic and Magicians, Mines and Mineral Resources, Names, Poetry, Rich People, Royalty, Toys, War / Weaponry, Work, Superstition, Arabs, Europe, Jewelry / Gold / Silver / Treasure

Posted by stew - Tue, Oct 25, 2005

Gazette & Courier - Monday, December 14, 1874
Success of Prof. Marsh's expedition

Success of Prof. Marsh 's expedition - Prof. Othniel C. Marsh of Yale College and his party reached Fort Laramie, Wyoming, Sun. the 29th, on their return from their expedition to the Bad Lands, south of the Black Hills, and notwithstanding a good deal of trouble from hostile Indians and very severe weather - the thermometer being several days below zero - their explorations have been very successful. The fossil beds explored there were of the micocene age, and though limited in extent, proved to be rich beyond expectation. Nearly two tons of fossil bones were collected, most of them rare specimens, and many of them unknown to science. These remains were all of tropical animals entombed in the bed of an ancient lake. Some of them are as large as elephants; others are allied to the camel, the rhinoceros and the horse. This collection, one of the finest ever made in the West, goes to Yale College, and when fully described by http://www.geocities...b/3773/OC_Marsh.html Prof. Marsh , will settle many doubtful points in paleontology and add an important chapter to the science. The researches resulted also in new geological information in regard to the subdivisions of the tertiary and their geographical extent.

Subjects: Animals / Reptiles, Archaeology, Cemeteries, Charlemont (MA), Connecticut, Education, Explorers, Native Americans, Science, Weather, Work, Geography

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