Alabama's Heritage Mounds

JSU professor: American Indian site is gone [LINK/Lead]

Posted on: February 2, 2010

Anniston Star – JSU professor American Indian site is gone

OXFORD — A Jacksonville State University professor says an ancient American Indian site Oxford city officials agreed not to disturb has been destroyed, but he does not know by whom.

City officials claim the site is still intact.

JSU professor of archaeology and anthropology Harry Holstein said the site at the historic Davis Farm property in Oxford contained remnants of an American Indian village and the 3-foot-high base of a once 30-foot-high temple mound, which he says may have contained human remains.

When Holstein visited the site last summer, it was still intact.

But when he returned to the area Monday, he could find no sign of the mound or the village remnants.

The land is now flat, with tire tread marks clearly visible in the dirt.

“It’s been flattened like a pancake,” Holstein said. “There is just grass over it now.”

Holstein believes the temple mound and village are related to a stone mound on a hill behind the Oxford Exchange. Last year workers hired by the city of Oxford attempted to destroy that mound and use the dirt below it as fill for a Sam’s Club. Following protests from local residents and activists, the contractor hired by the city’s Commercial Development Authority apparently stopped work there, and a private landowner says he is now providing fill dirt from his property.

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