Tuesday, March 31, 2009

More Near Regis College - Weston MA

I have been to this place before, parking on the street to the west, Highland Street.But this time I looked at the map before picking a direction, and decided to head for the low lands. I thought I would go around the "Water Tank" hill, counter clockwise, and started out heading down into the gully south of the hill, where I saw a first sign of ceremonial structure:Was this deliberate? Here is another view over the structure down to the little brook forming there.Actually a gateway opening towards the water, or a blocked gateway like this, is a typical structure where water comes out of the ground.

Continuing downstream, I thought I saw a rock pile at the foot of a tree and, stepping over a log to get there, stepped right onto a rock pile.And then as I looked around I found a number of others. Most of them were oval ground piles. I found maybe 11 of them, scattered around underneath the trees:Here are two of the nicer examples.All of these piles are in a flat area at the foot of a hill (the "Water Tank" hill) with brooks coming in from the north and west - to either side of the hill. Places likes this where brooks meet, at the confluence of brooks, are a common place to find rock piles. Such a site was mentioned recently by TheSeventhGeneration [see also here].

Although these piles are somewhat "grave-like", there are a couple of reasons I do not think so. Firstly, putting graves near a water supply does not make good sense. Secondly, no quartz. Also those gateways.

End Stones

A post inspired by the first photo in the post:

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Somewhere near Regis College - Weston, MA

About 11 rock piles at the confluence of two brooks. I am afraid my camera has seen better days.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Short stretches of wall - Gates Pond Rd Berlin, MA

Lots of stone walls in here that look typical - four and square. But some short stretches make me wonder if there might be more to it.

Monday, March 23, 2009

An Indian Cemetery in Lakeville, MA

Chris P. writes:

I wanted to share some photos of a site I recently visited in Lakeville, MA. I first found out about this site eight or ten years ago when a Lakeville resident gave me very vague directions to an "Indian burial ground" near Long Pond. He told me that the site was marked with a sign that had fallen to the ground. I looked for it back then and couldn't find the marked burial ground but did find a number of rock piles and other stone features. I finally made my way back there recently and was fortunate to have help from some local people who gave me tips on how to find the Indian burial ground I was looking for. It is a very small cemetery with small fieldstone grave markers and a few slate headstones, two of which have dates carved on them (both in the 1790s). Unfortunately there is development going on in this area and I feel that this site is threatened and probably should be more carefully explored before it is too late. Here are pictures of the piles, enclosures and other features near the cemetery:


A couple of the pictures show what I suspect is a marked stone in a stone wall very near the cemetery. The parallel lines on the stone appear to me to be very similar to those found at other sites and believed by some to possibly be a sort of Indian notation. Here are the photos of the alleged Indian cemetery:


Above the meeting of two brooks - NY

by theseventhgeneration
I was only out for a short hike this weekend, but managed to find an interesting spot just uphill from (and east of) the meeting of two small brooks. The majority of this area is a breakout zone, but some rock piles here have structure and are clearly man-made. Here is a rock with quartz bits in it, right next to a rock pile:
One of the clearly man-made rock piles:
A crude stone row that ends at a breakout.
Another stone row at this site runs roughly north-south with the northern end being crude and winding. The southern end is a straight stone wall.
This is the northern end of the stone row.
This is the southern end. There is a small wedged rock in the picture (half meter stick in front) covered in green moss:
Looking downhill, over the small wedged rock. Can you see it down there, in the distance?
It's a larger wedged rock. This view is looking back uphill (half meter stick in front) with the stone wall just visible in the background, to the right.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Propped Boulders, Cairns and Niches from Lyme CT

(Via Norman Muller) From Larry Harrop's blog, photos by Bob Miner. [Click here]

Friday, March 20, 2009

Equinox Sunset 2009

There was so much going on back then (May 08)

[Click here]

well....you can always find a couple of rock piles...

...if you walk around undisturbed woods in places like Carlisle:These are from different places northeast of Great Brook Farm. Isolated individual piles like these are not easy to make sense of.

This next weekend is looking good for more extended explorations.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

A roadside attraction - Carlisle, MA

Seen from Russel Rd, Carlisle, MAThere is a small rock pile on the left side of the brook, across from the larger boulder on the right. Note the rocks wedged into a split in that boulder. Further downhill, you can make out a berm running left to right, that I would have examined were it not in someone's backyard.

But is this ceremonial or remnant of something practical?

Small late-stage Dalton Hardaway Point

A small weekend find. A black rhyolite Dalton Hardaway. I am used to finding smaller white quartz points, of this same general style, out in Western Concord (for example click here) but this is the first one I found made of this black material and I found it in Eastern Concord. So it is a similar culture but a different group of people. Dalton Hardaway points are from the late "Paleo-Indian" period around 8K years ago.
At first I thought it was a Brewerton point but small details convince me it was not. If you are into this sort of thing, it is easy to see the evolution of Clovis points to Brewertons (for example click here) with this Dalton-Hardaway as an intermediate form. The theory is that Clovis people were originally from the Eastern US and this is consistent not only with the large variation in types of Clovis point as well as the large variations in descendant types found in this part of the US. (Click here for some other little treasures from Concord, MA.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Madawaska River area in Ontario, Canada

by theseventhgeneration

Here is a link to the article "Nineteenth Century Aboriginal Farmers of the Madawaska River" by Bill Allen, Heritage One Research (1.48MB pdf document): [Click here]. There is a photo on page 5 of stones on a glacial erratic.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Canada's Stonehenge

[Click here]
(via Archaeologica, my favorite daily archeology news website)

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Mountain top prayer seat?

Very interesting site over at Two Headwaters [Click here]

A single pile for a weekend of looking

I spent last weekend driving, walking, driving some more, walking some more. This was the best rock pile I could come up with. It was not really the only thing I found but it felt like it.This was a little downhill from the site next to Rt 495 behind Lover's Ln Southborough that I mentioned the other day.

And one more look at that site next to the highway. The video quality was so bad this little collection of rocks and piles may not have been clear from the previous posting:
Note the spacing of the piles along a curve. Note the larger rocks diagonal-ing off to the left. Every single rock placement is deliberate.

A couple of hints near the Sudbury Valley Trustees "Turenne" Property - Southborough, MA

A long drive to see not much.

An outcrop with a wedged splitnext to a broken down pile. I wasn't sure whether or not to photo it.Then one nicer example of a split wedged rock:
Then I walked over hill and dale, to find only a very faint hint of a site where an outcrop faced north into a wetland. A little pattern with a "manitou" shaped rock-on-rock.
[Note the rock to the left. I think it is part of the pattern]

In the background...a solitary rock pile:Closer:

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Perched Rock - Acton/Carlisle MA

Near Lover's Lane - Southborough, MA

I have been driving by this attractive bit of undisturbed hilltop, with stone walls, each time I head home from further south. So I finally figured out how to get there. Now that I have been there I think maybe the other side of the highway might be worth exploring too - that is where the water is coming from that re-emerges from underground around where the blue outline appears on the map fragment.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Seeing into the woods when there is snow on the ground

FFC sent this:

I admit, I have enjoyed being able to see deeper into the woods at this time of year.

Monday, March 09, 2009

Seeking information about a site in Franklin, MA

Norman Muller asks a question. If you have any information please leave a comment or email:

Jim Mavor describes hundreds of twenty-to-forty-ton boulders in Franklin, MA, leading to a swampy area. In Manitou he illustrates a line of these boulders on page 109, and says they are in an area called "Indian Fort." Might you know exactly where this site is located, or know someone who might?

022 as Possible Turtle

Turtle Vision strikes again...

Friday, March 06, 2009

Marker piles from between oaks.

On a hill in Harvard, a place I know, I was looking at the piles trying to decide if they were in lines or notand trying to decide if there was one place from which you could see them all.In fact, there was such a spot, where the ridge extended out into the slope and you could see all the piles. I think such a spot is a key element. Here is the the view towards the end of the ridge where I imagine this special spot to be near the cedar tree:There is also a black oak to the left and a white oak to the right. Most of the rock piles were visible downhill from the cedar tree. There were also a few smaller rock piles visible from that same location but uphill, behind the "camera" in the picture. As often at such places, the larger piles are further downhill. What emerges from this is that the lines of rock piles (that I am always looking for) are not in line with this spot on the hill. To the contrary, the piles are visible, separately, from there, and evenly spaced along lines that are perpendicular to the view from the central spot. Hence these piles are tick marks along a ruler rather than enforcers of the straightness of the ruler. And this is consistent with the placement of vertical clean-faced sides of rock piles which also happens at such places (although not here) where such clean-faced sides are in line with a direction perpendicular to the line of piles.

This does open open up the question of why someone would bother putting rock piles in straight lines when they are not to be viewed along that line? What purpose would the line serve? It would be great if it marked something else but perhaps it is aesthetic. Is there another possibility?
You know the weather and the footing are still not good but I will try to get out this weekend anyway.

Wednesday, March 04, 2009

More vanishing rock piles - Bolton, MA

This time: south of Twin Maple Lane, somewhere around there:
Some remnants along the outcrops:
Note the quartz:A king of passageway up the outcrop:I won't be going back but there was something there, along that outcrop.

Tuesday, March 03, 2009

Roadside Attractions - Tyngsboro, MA

Some remnant sites in the southern part of Tyngsboro:The lower blue outline on the map was down a steep bank from the road:
Down to some piles at the edge of the water.Note the shim:
At the upper blue outline on the map, near the corner of Dane and Connell Lanes, are a few rock piles in a nondescript topography - except that everywhere around here water comes out of the ground. The site consists of one slightly more prominent pile built on a boulder
(see also the video); and several other piles consisting two or three smaller rocks on a larger rock:Similarly:A last pile was different: on the ground with more constituent rocks, here it is in its present context:If it were not for the other piles, I would have thought this was part of the construction of that retaining wall. But I think it might be part of the site.