UT Students participate in archaeology dig at Sidecut Metropark

TOLEDO, OH (WTOL) - Local University of Toledo students who are learning how to uncover history got a chance to dive into Northwest Ohio history hands on.

For five weeks, University of Toledo Anthropology students have been working in Sidecut Metro Park just off of the Maumee River. On Thursday, the students were meticulously excavating and sifting these two meter square areas, hoping to find any signs of Native American culture.

It's an invaluable hands on lesson for these students outside of the classroom.

"Learning these skills in terms of surveying, in terms of excavating methods and techniques and learning how to read soils changing, and color, texture in a controlled environment is crucial," said Dr. Melissa Baltus, assistant professor of Anthropology at the University of Toledo.

Along with uncovering samples, the students also learn how to properly survey an area, age soil deposits, and study the samples collected in a lab.

"Well, it's great to get the experience before your looking to do this as a career. I know jobs will be looking for people with experience. So, it's a really kind of great thing to be able to do that with the supervision of Dr. Baltus," said Isaiah Kolb, junior Anthropology student.

Some of the finds on Thursday included a ground stone tool, and flakes left behind from making flint tools, along with storage and fire pits.

These artifacts could range from 700 to 3,000 years ago.

Along with learning the trade, these students are also helping all of us learn more about our own history.

"So they're contributing to research, they're contributing to science. They contribute to our knowledge just by identifying this new site on the landscape that hadn't been identified before. So, it's incredibly important to better understand how people were using this location," said Dr. Baltus.

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