Dig aims to save Native American burial mounds

tags: American Indians, Tennessee, burial mounds, Archaelogy News Network



Toye Heape stood on the slope of an ancient Native American burial mound, confident in the significance of what was beneath his feet.

The 1,800-year-old site has long been known to historians. But Heape, vice president of the Native History Association, was still excited to see state archaeologists slowly burrowing into the dirt last week.

The excavation, scheduled to end Friday, was never intended to prove specifically what rests within the two small hills that sit just south of Highway 96 in the Westhaven subdivision. The intent is simply to preserve them.

“For the Native American community, whether (the site) gets on the National Register (of Historic Places) or not, it’s still a sacred place,” Heape said. “Our feelings about it won’t change.”...



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