Monday, September 8, 2014

Visit to Meadowcroft Rockshelter (Bet You've Never Even Heard of It!)

One of the best investments we've made since moving to Steubenville is our membership to the Heinz History Center in Pittsburgh. Not only do we get unlimited visits to a very cool museum but we also get free admission to the Meadowcroft Rockshelter in Avella, Pennsylvania. I had seen a brochure about the Rockshelter and had been wanting to go, so when an invite came in the mail for a "members only" day with a free picnic lunch, I jumped at the opportunity. 

Meadowcroft is about 40 minutes from our house, down a beautiful winding road in PA. The weather was humid but not overly warm so it was a pleasant enough day to spend outside. We got to Meadowcroft around 11:00 and were able to visit the 1890's village, where we saw an original log home, schoolhouse, church and blacksmith shed. It was especially interesting to watch and listen to the explanation of how they would make nails. Such an ordinary little thing, but when you actually see how much work it used to take to make one, it makes you more grateful for the ease with which we obtain them nowadays. 

After checking out everything in the village we hopped on the bus and were taken down the road to the actual rock shelter. Turns out this is a pretty special piece of history hidden away in Pennsylvania. It's the oldest site of human habitation in North America. No joke. Apparently this rock overhang/cave was the perfect "hotel" for travelling natives for the past 16,000 years! 

Soon it was time to head back to the main building and stand in line for some yummy food. I didn't know what to expect from a "free picnic lunch" but there were hot dogs, hamburgers, coleslaw, chili, pasta and cookies. Another nice perk! After eating we toured the museum (mostly dedicated to barns and harness racing) and then checked out the Indian cabin and a 16th century Indian Village. Lots of neat stuff to see. We even got to try our hand at using an atlatl (spear throwing device.) 

We haven't had many adventures this summer but I'm so glad we took the time to do this one. And for once I not only remembered my camera, but also got a few shots of the two of us!

 My studly hubby! 
(Ignore the ugly wallpaper. Really, it's not my taste or style. But have you ever tried removing that stuff??! It'll be there for awhile yet.)

 Covered bridge at Meadowcroft Rockshelter

 The Miller Farm House

 The church at Meadowcroft

 Me, enjoying some time outdoors

 Pretty cool view of a rock overhang

 Another good pic of my handsome guy!

The Indian Cabin at Meadowcroft

The archaeological site at Meadowcroft Rockshelter

Aside from a couple with a grandchild and one teenager, we were the youngest folks in our tour group! Sad thing is...I felt right at home with all the older folks enjoying a history lesson. :P


Stephanie said...

You're adorable. You should write advertisements for places like this! :-)

Mama D said...

Awesome experience! Glad you remembered the camera and took pictures!