BONE’S AND ARTIFACTS
Over the years many artifacts and bones have been found in and around Waterford, There have been a few archaeology dig’s, the Edinboro University, archaeology Dept in 1976. that found long ago foundations at the Judson House that suggest the structure had been changed many times. The dig also included pieces of pottery, and cook ware. The WPA dig’s in the 1930’s, around the Eagle Hotel also found foundations of buildings around the hotel. Members of the Eriez Archaeology Society searched and excavated Indian village area’s around French Creek and Lake LeBoeuf, in the 1950’s where it is said seven large Indian tribes once lived.
Most artifacts were found in the late 1800’s and early 1900’s, at that time most folks were unimpressed by the things they found and sometimes just threw them away again.
Youngs Dispatch 1863 article said Mr. Graff of LeBoeuf township, was cutting down trees and came across an oak tree that grew around a musket, counting the rings, the tree was 75 years old, which made the placement of the musket about 1780, I’m guessing that the owner must have died there because no one in the 1700’s would leave their weapon in the middle of the wilderness leaning against a tree and walk away.
In the early 1900’s Edward Wishart’s writing’s said he found many Indian artifacts, arrowheads, stone tools a tomahawk, beads, flints and drilling points, some of his relic’s were found by area farmers and given to him, pipes, grinding pestles, hammer stones and fleshing instruments . He was shown by an old Waterford citizen, a Mr. Babcock, many areas around the lake that had the unmistakable sign’s of Indian village fires, Edward said he dug down 11” where the soil was blackened, so the fires had burned there for a long time. They also came across a large rock that was concave on top that would have been used to grind grain’s, and is undoubtedly still at the same place now.. Mr Babcock said he collected many relic’s, but no one in Waterford wanted them so he gave them to a man from Spartansburg, Pa.
I have a long list of artifacts found in the vicinity of where the old fort’s sat and were donated by Edward Wishart to the Washington Shrine, (old name of Waterford’s museum), many artifacts were found in the area of the Judson House because this would be the near center of where the fort troops were garrisoned in log huts inside the stockade. note; we do not have these relic’s now, they were probably sent to the Pennsylvania Historical Museum in Harrisburg, during the years they had control of the Judson House.
In the early 1900’s, while grading West 1st street the skeleton of an Indian wrapped in a coarse woven garment was unearthed along with a leather bag of beads,
A cavalry sword was found on the Trask farm, on Trask road, a number of cannon balls have been found around the eagle and museum property, when grading Main Street before it was paved, a number of swords and knives were found and taken to the Eagle and put on exhibit during Mr. P. Judson’s ownership, and since the relics had no certified owner’s, the hotel guests seemed to think they could just take them, and they did.
Many Indian mounds have been found all around LeBoeuf township, which have been plowed down by farmer’s years ago.
Ref; Judson House files, and writings of Edward Wishart
In the late 1950’s as a teen I was helping load a pickup with gravel down at the end of West 2nd street and at that time the area was a gravel pit, and up on the rim of the bank sat a human skull that was dug up, this area was Waterford’s first graveyard, and from what I was told at the time that many Indians were buried there too, they knew they were Indian because of the way the skeletons were positioned when unearthed.
BONE’S AND ARTIFACTS