Mason County, WV - An Archaeological Treasure

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Conclusion

These archaeological sites represent only a fraction of the many occupations of native people throughout the history of Mason County. As a rule, the places people live today were occupied many times in the past.

Archaeologists donít know exactly what caused the native people to leave the Kanawha Valley. It may have been a combination of pressures. The powerful Iroquois nations to the north routinely made raids on villages along the Ohio River and into Virginia. In the Southeast, the Spanish had introduced diseases into the region.  Disease might have been introduced into the valley by migrating groups, although there has been no evidence found so far of mass burials that would indicate an epidemic. For whatever reason, when the first European settlers entered the Kanawha Valley, they found no occupied villages. All that remained were the remnants of earthworks and abandoned agricultural fields of native peoples who had flourished here many years before.

Darla Spencer [dspencer@crai-ky.com]  
 
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