Saturday, January 19, 2008

Fort Description

The largest of these may have been the Old Fort at Friend in the town of Jerusalem. This was an ellipse, 545 feet long and 485 feet wide. Samuel Hart Wright, investigating in 1880, said this earthwork had twelve gateways or openings, alternating eight and 14 feet wide. The enclosure surrounded almost five acres, with a deep trench running around the inside of the earthwork itself. A large spring was nearby. “Many years” before Wright wrote his account, Bartleson Shearman found a cemetery about 20 rods southeast of the earthwork. In one grave was the skeleton of a man, with a woman to his right and a child in her lap; the skulls of the latter were broken with some weapon. Wright found Indian pottery in the earthwork, and reported that previously a stone pipe bowl and a French gunlock had been found. This certainly sounds as though the Senecas had at least used the place but one of their chiefs told Shearman they knew nothing of the work’s origin.

From a document of unknown origin that was probably given to me by Doris Pace. I’ve labeled it Document #A.

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