Wednesday, February 23, 2022

Not a pure rectangle

I was just out in the woods showing "rectangular mounds" to skeptical people. Every time I tried to argue that the thing was rectangular, I was forced to observe that one corner was slightly off. Three times in a row, looking at three separate mounds, I saw this:

I'll sleep better now. Now that I am telling the truth:) 

Apparently this is not entirely new information. See Figure 4 here: Bulletin of the Massachusetts Archaeological Society, Vol. 73, No. 2 (

Stone Turtle - out west

 Via reader Francis:

Any comments? 

See here.

Tuesday, February 15, 2022

Old Connecticut Path: Waters Farm & Manchaug Pond -- West Sutton, MA

Also known as the Nipmuc Path, Wikipedia tells us:

 "The Old Connecticut Path was the Native American trail that led westward from the area of Massachusetts Bay to the Connecticut River Valley, the first of the North American trails that led west from the settlements close to the Atlantic seacoast, towards the interior. The earliest colonists of Massachusetts Bay Colony used it, and rendered it wider by driving cattle along it. The old route is still followed, for part of its length, by Massachusetts Route 9 and Massachusetts Route 126..."

Some Screen Captures:

Friday, February 11, 2022

Afoot in Connecticut 29 - Glacial Erratics


Eric D. Lehman is the author of Bridgeport: Tales from the Park City and Hamden: Tales from the Sleeping Giant. He teaches creative writing and literature at the University of Bridgeport and his series Afoot in Connecticut highlights the Nutmeg State's natural and historical treasures. This episode finds Eric in Seymour, Woodbridge, and the Naugatuck State Forest, examining a few glacial erratics.

Wednesday, February 09, 2022

Tuesday, February 01, 2022

Creating Rock Walls (CA)

 Tsektsel is derived from Yurok and means roughly "a place" (Wylie 1976).

Alyssa Alexandria photo

Paved Logging Road on U.S. Land Called Threat to Freedom of Religion


ORLEANS, Calif. — “… among the jagged rock outcroppings of the “high country” of the Siskiyou Mountains and along the banks of the rushing, salmon-filled waters of the Klamath and Trinity rivers--there is a quiet resurgence of native American tribal religion.

Ceremonial sites for traditional religious dances that had long fallen into disuse are being reconstructed in this pristine corner of northwest California at spots with exotic names like Ishi Pishi Falls, Weitchpec, Hoopa and Kota-Mein. (The latter, in the Karuk language, means “center of the world.”)

Alyssa Alexandria photo

    The death and rebirth of the world were reenacted by building sacred structures, such as dance arenas and underground sweat houses, and creating sacred fires and rock walls related to acquisition of power by shamans (priests) and their assistants…At the extreme east tip of Chimney Rock is a tsektsel , a rock circle forming a rudimentary “prayer seat.” There, a meditator can survey the entire landscape. On a recent clear day, one could see the tip of Mt. Shasta to the east, Preston Peak to the north and the Pacific Ocean to the west..."