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Mississippi Valley Archaeology Center

Site Snippets

Sanford Archaeological District – Etched Stone Square

September 17, 2020

This unusual, etched square of sandstone was found in the early 2000s during excavations at the Sanford Archaeological District in La Crosse, Wisconsin.  A piece of local sandstone was shaped and smoothed to form a small, flat square, and an…

Sanford Archaeological District – Oneota Vessel 44

August 27, 2020

Vessel 44 is a Midway Incised variety lip top narrow vessel recovered during excavations in the early 2000s at the Sanford Archaeological District in La Crosse, Wisconsin. It was found in a zone containing a pottery cluster within a large,…

Lessard – Medicine Bottle

August 20, 2020

This medicine bottle, found at the Lessard site in Prairie du Chien, Wisconsin, is about 7½ inches tall. It is made of aqua-colored class embossed with the words “Dr HOOFLAND’S//GERMAN BITTERS//LIVER COMPLAINT//DYSPEPSIA & C//C.M. JACKSON/PHILADELPHIA.” How old is it? This…

Sand Lake Archaeological District – Catlinite Pipe Bowl

August 13, 2020

This catlinite pipe bowl was recovered in the mid-1980s from a site within the Sand Lake Archaeological District located northeast of La Crosse, Wisconsin. Catlinite, a type of pipestone, is a soft red siltstone named after the 19th century American…

Overhead – 1980 Excavation 2

August 6, 2020

Throwback Thursday – Kathy Stevenson pondering Overhead site excavations in 1980.  Overhead was a multicomponent site at the south end of La Crosse, Wisconsin, that has now been developed.

Second Fort Crawford – Bone Ornament

July 30, 2020

This bone ornament was recovered from the Second Fort Crawford Officers’ Quarters in Prairie du Chien in 1999.  It has a round finial, is hollow in the center, and is drilled through so it can be strung.

Sand Lake Archaeological District – Net Sinker

July 23, 2020

This small sandstone object was found in the Sand Lake Archaeological District near Onalaska, Wisconsin, in 2008. Its function is unknown. It was intentionally shaped into a barrel-like form with a groove around the middle. The groove suggests that it…

Second Fort Crawford – Buckle

July 16, 2020

This possible military buckle was recovered during the 1999 excavations at Second Fort Crawford in Prairie du Chien, Wisconsin.  It is made of thin metal in a decorative shaped rectangle. This buckle is corroded, so no regimental number is apparent.

Sand Lake Archaeological District – Scrapers

July 9, 2020

These scrapers were recovered during the 2008 excavations at the Sand Lake Archaeological District, located north of La Crosse, Wisconsin.  The scrapers in the top two rows are made of chert while the two in the bottom row are made…

Sanford Archaeological District – Oneota Vessel 57

July 2, 2020

This Oneota vessels has a “goal post” design consisting of alternating panels of vertical and horizontal tool trails with punctate borders.  Recovered during excavations in the early 2000s at the Sanford Archaeological District in La Crosse, Wisconsin.