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Thanks from Historic Camden

Posted: April 10, 2014 8:38 a.m.
Updated: April 11, 2014 5:00 a.m.

The governing board of Historic Camden Revolutionary War Site would like to express its sincerest appreciation to Mayor Tony Scully and the members of Camden City Council for approving recommended changes to a much needed sewer project that crosses portions of our historic site. City Manager Mel Pearson, Public Works Director Tom Couch and Deputy Director Sam Davis are to be commended for working tirelessly with numerous individuals to find a solution to installing the sewer lines in a timely manner while protecting parts of the archaeologically rare and nationally significant colonial site of early Camden. 

In addition, we wish to thank the 15 archaeologists and volunteers who came together on a moment’s notice from around the Midlands to conduct salvage excavations on the east side of Broad Street under the leadership of State Archaeologist Dr. Jon Leader. Thanks also to Historic Camden’s lead archaeologist, Ken Lewis, at Michigan State University, who shared his published data and vast knowledge of 18th century Camden throughout this initiative.

Ever mindful of construction deadlines, the archaeology team worked in close cooperation with helpful city public works professionals and the crew of Conder Construction to sample test a shallow trench dug in advance of a scheduled sewer line trench. Anticipating minimal discoveries due to previous site intrusions, the excavations proved fruitful -- ceramic shards, pipe stems, foundation bricks, glass, soil features, post holes, middens, and rusty nails -- artifacts one could expect of a unique 18th century historical site.

The result, which we embrace, is the opportunity for us to fulfill our mission to educate the public, our public officials and our community regarding the very real and fragile importance of Historic Camden Revolutionary War Site in the broader social fabric of our American History.

Baron de Kalb, George Washington, the Marquis de Lafayette, other Revolutionary War notables and unsung warriors walked these grounds, as did our forefathers. General de Kalb; nameless Revolutionary War soldiers; our county’s namesake, Joseph Kershaw; and others of our community died and, in some cases, are buried on what is now our property. We, all of us, board, city, and residents are trustees of a legacy rivaled by few.

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