Artifacts from Fork District to be shared

Submitted to Dorchester Banner/DCHS
Native American life will be the subject of a talk at the Heritage Museums and Gardens of Dorchester on Feb. 26.

CAMBRIDGE — The first residents of the county, Native Americans, made their homes in the area for thousands of years before the arrival of Europeans and Africans. Their history will be the subject of a talk on Feb. 26.

Early Dorchester County land records reflect the efforts that the white settlers went to in order to contain the local native people and to steal their lands. An Act in the Laws of 1698, speaks to it being “most just that the Indians, the ancient Inhabitants of this Province, should have a convenient dwelling place in this their Native Country…” In this document, the General Assembly, with the endorsement of the king, set aside land for the Nanticoke people — a reservation.

This land stretched from Chickacoon Creek (Chicone), north of Vienna, up to the present towns of Brookview and Eldorado and was to be rented to the natives at the rate of one beaver skin annually. By 1750, most natives had left the reservation for points north, but they left behind a wealth of artifacts that date well before the settlers’ interference.

On Feb. 26 at noon, Native American Curator Terry Crannell will present a talk and display of the artifacts he has accumulated over his lifetime from this region of Dorchester County. He will speak on the people from prehistoric times up through contact with the settlers with artifacts to describe each time period.

This talk will be held at the Heritage Museums and Gardens of Dorchester at 1003 Greenway Drive in Cambridge. Visitors who are not members of the Dorchester County Historical Society will be charged $5 admission. For information, call 410.228.7953.