This sign marks the entrance to Town Creek Indian Mound, a North Carolina State Historic Site just east of Mount Gilead. (Town Creek photo)
MOUNT GILEAD (contributed) – Town Creek Indian Mound State Historic Site invites the public to join in the global celebration of archaeology and the thrill of discovery during International Archaeology Day. On Sat., Oct. 18, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Town Creek staff will provide hands-on activities for the young & young-at-heart using techniques and skills employed by archaeologists today. Visitors will be able to try their hand at throwing an atlatl or experience the thrill of excavation by carefully extracting chocolate chips from a cookie. Clay pots and cord bracelets can be made using the same methods as the Pee Dee Culture, then taken home as a souvenir.
Every October the Archaeological Institute of America (AIA) and archaeological organizations across the United States, Canada, and abroad present archaeological programs and activities for people of all ages and interests. Whether it is a family-friendly archaeology fair, a guided tour of a local archaeological site, a simulated dig, a lecture or a classroom visit from an archaeologist, the interactive, hands-on International Archaeology Day programs provide the chance to indulge your inner Indiana Jones and become an archaeologist for the day. More information about the AIA and International Archaeology Day can be found at http://www.archaeologyday.org.
This event is free and open to the public, though Town Creek always welcomes donations to help with its work. More information is available from the site at 910-439-6802 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more than 1,000 years, American Indians farmed lands later known as North Carolina. Around A.D. 1000, a new cultural tradition arrived in the Pee Dee River Valley. Throughout Georgia, South Carolina, eastern Tennessee, and western and southern Piedmont North Carolina, inhabitants built earthen mounds for their leaders, engaged in widespread trade, supported craftspeople, and celebrated a new religion.
The mission of Town Creek is to interpret the history of the American Indians who once lived here. The visitor center features interpretive exhibits and audiovisual displays. A national historic landmark, Town Creek Indian Mound State Historic Site is North Carolina’s only state historic site dedicated to American Indian heritage. Tour groups are welcome and encouraged. The site is open Tuesday through Saturday, 9 a.m.-5 p.m., and Sunday, 1-5 p.m. It is closed to the public Mondays and most major holidays.
The historic site is within the Division of State Historic Sites and located at 509 Town Creek Mound Road, Mount Gilead, NC, 27306. For more information on Town Creek, visit http://www.towncreekindianmound.com.
–contributed by Town Creek Indian Mound State Historic Site