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June 12, 2013

Coopersville dig identifies old pre-1820s homestead

(Continued)

Pieces of dishes they collected helped pinpoint the homestead as pre-1820 by the color and design used on the china, he noted.

“Dishes can tell us a lot about people,” he said. “Are they expensive or cheap, imported or local? Ceramics are very datable.”

He categorized the china as inexpensive and probably manufactured locally.

“This archaeological work has brought to light new information on how this family adapted to the environment, how they stayed connected to the wider, growing community and gives us a rare glimpse of daily life in a frontier area,” he said.

There is still plenty more to uncover, he added. Work to this point has located the original cabin, but an aerial view of the surrounding pasture shows an oddly colored rectangle nearby. That location will be the focus of upcoming excavations, Black said.

All combined, the work at Coop’s Pork N’ Fish Site offers a unique look at what it was like living in northeastern New York when settlements were just beginning to take shape.

Email Jeff Meyers:jmeyers@pressrepublican.com

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