INDIAN RELICS IN SOUTH JERSEY

J. Gifford
1893 Science  
ITwas the custom of the Indians to visit the seashore a t certain tinzes of the year. The trails they follo~ired have been traced across the State of New Jersey. "Beach-day" and iiclam-bakes" are customs learned from tlie Indians. The enormons quantit,ies of shells in heaps along the shore are indications of these migrations and of their fondness for the oxster, claiizs and other inollusks. A certain kind of clan1 is still known by its Indian name, qtihhog. llLany toils of these shells still
more » ... ese shells still rernaiu in spite of the fact that large quantities have been used for roads, for farlits and, long ago, for a flus in the inanufizctnre of iron from bog-ore. The size and nunlber of these heaps indicate that tlie bays and thoroughfares wore then literally full of clams and oysters of considerai)ly larger size than those of to-day. There is little else oi' interest in these heaps besides a few scattered potsherds. Owing, perhaps, to the lack of fresll nrater, the incleniency of the weather and the noxious illsects ~~h i c !~ infest these rt~arshes, the seashore was but a iransient resting place for the Tndim. Tradition says that in spite of ?heir endurance they were unwilling to bear, for an:,-length of time, the bites of those pestiferons flies :ind mosquitoes. From the physical geog+al?lly of the region one may cluiclily judge where they moixlci locate their per~iinnent settlements. The sands of the interior offered few attrac-~v a s named from the Catamba River, between the Carolinas, which received its name froln the Catawbas once llved along its banks. Near Catawba, at bouth Eiver, there are vostiges of an Endian village. Up the main river a short distance there is another a t Goose Point. Throughout the whole region, in f a d , there are signs oP Endian habit i~?' ions. Cata\i~ba is a cleserted p and bluff. Opposite are the fastnesses of a smamp forest. The li\er ~\ i n d s so~xtliward through many miles of m,zrsh. Ho wild and cieserted is the region that it 1-eclalles but a little stretch of the imagination to see squav s ]~icl:;ng I,ei.ries along the banks or digging the rootittzlks of tllc "Indian club;" others bringing clay from the beds near hy, li~ieading and mixing it with b:ts of pounclecl quartz and sllerds; others weaving moulds of grass and t~i-igs; others ornamenting tlae finer grades with dots and lines; others working implements of jasper, and, perhaps, ~vampunz, from shells.
doi:10.1126/science.ns-22.552.113 pmid:17746206 fatcat:ycbyyr6r6fdtfgroauoev6p4r4