OUTDOORS: These days, Indian relics are hard to find - The Times: Sports

OUTDOORS: These days, Indian relics are hard to find

Font Size:
Default font size
Larger font size

Posted: Thursday, July 10, 2014 12:04 am

I learned to look for Indian relics when I was a very young lad, in the year of 1954.

Back then, there were a lot of remains of old villages throughout the county back. Some have asked me how we knew where to look. There were certain things that would tip off a person off that there may have been a village in a given area.

First, if you came upon an area where the ground had a lot of flint rock lying around, that was a good place to start. If it had flint rock and old broken pottery, you have definitely found a village. Upon careful observation one could find arrowheads, spear heads, corn pounders and a variety of scrapers. Generally, a short distance from a village was a burial ground. Many tribes didn’t bury their dead. They propped them up on an elevated device above ground. But in our area, they buried their dead underground in a mound.

Many of the mounds became uncovered over the years and bones, skulls, a variety of weapons and tools lay near the deceased. As major rivers were dammed and water covered the mounds relics could be found in spoil piles near the banks of the Illinois River. A spoil pile is earth that has been dredged up from the river bottom and deposited on the shoreline. This was done to maintain a navigation channel.

My dad and I always checked any new spoil piles that we found along the river. Because his father lived when there still were some tribes present in Illinois, he passed on this knowledge to him and he passed it on to me. It was very interesting hands-on history.

Unfortunately, Indian relics are very scarce today. I can only imagine that they have been picked over or buried because of industry. Most Indians I know are casino owners, commercial fishermen or engineers. I attended a very fine Indian, history seminar years back at Shabbona Lake. My good friend Denny Sands invited my wife and I to attend. It was very informative indeed. The Sioux Indian that gave the seminar was an engineer, so we have a lot to talk about.

He still followed a lot of the old tribal customs, even though he was an educated man. Why did he do it? Many Indians are still very reverent to their ancestors and religious beliefs.

Hunting report

  • I received word out of Canada that the waterfowl population is booming. With the above average rainfall we have experienced this year, nesting grounds are filled with wetlands. This is not only true in Canada but also in the prairie potholes in Nebraska. This should be a very good duck and goose seasons.
  • Wild turkeys are rebounding as well. I have seen two hens with about six to eight polts following her this past week.

Fishing report

  • River systems are returning to normal today. That should help unless we get more heavy storms this week. Some Ottawa residents are catching some nice catfish off the banks. Minnows are still scarce, but some guys are seining a few near creek mouths. There are very few river herring or gizzard shad so far.

Rules of Conduct

  • 1 Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
  • 2 Don't Threaten or Abuse. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated. AND PLEASE TURN OFF CAPS LOCK.
  • 3 Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
  • 4 Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
  • 5 Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
  • 6 Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.

Welcome to the discussion.

Connect with us

Times poll


Better Times poll


Posted 9 hours ago by Progressive.

article: Ask The Times: Prevailing Wages

If prevailing wages are not paid by contractor because the contractor was not informed project was …


Posted 10 hours ago by kentuckyhillblly.

article: Official: 'Time to solve the problem'

note to myself......................nothing is free including free sewer hookups. what is free now…


Posted 11 hours ago by hhill.

article: Official: 'Time to solve the problem'

The city can still get those grants without annexing in those areas. Many cities provide sewer to …


Posted 12 hours ago by Dunestrider.

article: BIKE TREK: Calumet Trail is a challenge…

There is an amazing abundance and variety of life along the Calumet trail. Many times I have seen c…


More News

Visit our other local news sites:
Daily-Journal.com -- Kankakee, IL
QCOnline.com -- Moline, IL
PostBulletin.com -- Rochester, MN