Franklin Goes Big for Archaeology Month


Although this year, Secretary of State William Galvin has not made any special preparations, October has traditionally been celebrated in Massachusetts as Archaeology month But in Franklin, the Historical Museum is picking up the tradition in a big way with three 'not-to-be-missed' events -- with help from the Mass. Dept. of Conservation and Recreation and the Public Archaeology Lab.

Saturday, October 8

First, NY Times best selling author and former Franklin resident Michael Tougias returns to the Franklin Historical Museum Sunday, October 8th, where he will give a slide presentation and talk on his two books covering the war between the English Colonists and Native Americans in 1675-76 . Tougias is the author of the acclaimed Until I Have No Country (A novel of King Philip's War), and co-author with Eric Schultz of King Philip's War: The History and Legacy of America's Forgotten Conflict.

The first part of the presentation will discuss the Indian way of life, Colonial settlements, and the events leading up to the war as depicted in his novel. The second part covers the battles and the strategy during this cataclysmic war, which on a per capita basis was the bloodiest conflict in our nation's history. Book signing and questions will follow.

Slides include battle sites, period sketches, historic markers, maps, and suggestions for visiting road-side history. Tougias also discusses Native strategy during the war and the challenges of writing a historic novel. Former Commissioner of Indian Affairs for Massachusetts and member of the Wampanoag Tribe, Edith Andrews, is quoted on the novel's back cover, commenting that Until I Have No Country "captures the essence of the Native American." The novel includes adventure, romance, and intrigue while staying true to historical facts.

Tougias is best known for his seven books about true survival and rescue stories. His latest book is Extreme Survival: Lessons From Those Who Have Triumphed Against All Odds.

The author grew up in Longmeadow, Massachusetts which was the scene of a raid during King Philip’s War and that is where the author’s fascination with this conflict began.

The museum opens at 1:00PM and the presentation will start at 1:15PM. The Second Sunday Speaker Series is free, open to the public and sponsored by The Friends of The Franklin Historical Museum. Handicap access is available through the back entrance of the museum. Be sure to visit our gift shop after the presentation for unique Franklin gifts.

Saturday, October 14

On Saturday, October 14th all are invited to meet at 10:00AM at the Franklin State Forest parking lot on Grove Street as we go back to the 1930's with the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) -- the "Tree Army" that helped create the State Forest that we know today by planting hundreds and hundreds of trees. View a brief historical film clip of the CCC Camp that once existed here in Franklin. The footage covers the construction (and deconstruction) of the Camp. After the short film, we will walk through the Camp as it exists today within the Franklin State Forest. This is a special opportunity to uncover our State Forest's CCC history in plain sight. This free event is scheduled from 10:00am - 12Noon and parking is in the Grove Street Lot. Bring water (and bug spray). The short presentation and walk through is sponsored by the Department of Conservation and Recreation and the Franklin Historical Commission.

Sunday, October 15

On Sunday, October 15th, Dianna Doucette from the Public Archaeology Lab (PAL), a private company that performs archaeology surveys for public and private projects, will be presenting at the Museum. She and her firm did work in Franklin in connection with utility corridor work and found significant evidence of Native American activities. As part of their charter, they also do public education and, thus, are happy to come to us during Archaeology Month to discuss their findings. Doucette, and perhaps a colleague, will deliver a talk and slide presentation, possibly even accompanied by some artifacts! The museum opens at 1:00PM and the presentation begins at 1:15. It will last about an hour, including a question and answer session. As always, events at the museum are free and open to the public.

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