LOCAL ARCHAEOLOGY NEWS: Team Digs Through History at Bradenton Ruin Site

By Angie Angers, Reporter, BAY NEWS 9
BRADENTON — Saturday, March 04, 2017

A team of five National Park Service archeologists, with help from local agencies, sifted through land at Shaw’s Point by De Soto National Memorial on Tuesday. (Angie Angers, staff)

A structure that is listed on the National Register of Historic Places is now the site of an archaeological investigation. A team of archaeologists sifted through land at Tabby Ruin Site Area known to have been settled by William Shaw in 1843 Excavation expected to take two weeks A team of five National Park Service archaeologists, with help from local agencies, sifted through land at Shaw’s Point by De Soto National Memorial on Tuesday. Pieces of pottery, bones, and century-old nails were pulled systematically from the ground at the Tabby Ruin Site.

“There’s many, many other stories that this structure can tell us, and by finding these little bits of the artifacts, they tell some of those stories,” said Sherry Svekis of the Time Sifters Archaeology Society.

The group is excavating land known to be settled by William Shaw, a shipping merchant from Key West, in 1843. But this team is digging deeper, hoping to find out what happened before Shaw lived in the area that may have not been recorded.

“But there’s historic reports that say it was here prior to him arriving in Manatee, so we’re really trying to get an idea of how much earlier, and trying to connect it with some of the other historic periods that we know about on the river,” Svekis said.

Due to the sea level rising and some coastal erosion, the team decided to excavate now, before history was washed away.

“We’re being proactive and coming here to recover a part of history that would otherwise be lost if we don’t come in here and do some research,” said National Park Service archaeologist Margo Schwadron.

The excavation will take about two weeks. When it’s complete, the processing and research of the artifacts could take up to a year. Then, the team will release a full report on what they have found.

The team of professionals had some help from volunteers. If you would like to be a part of the next excavation, connect with the Time Sifters Archaeology Society.


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