Native artifacts come home to Scotia

A collection of Native American artifacts that was put together more than a hundred years ago has returned to its place of origin and will be on display at the Flint House in Scotia.

The artifacts, collected by the late Charles F. Moehle beginning in 1904 when he was 8 years old, have been on display at the Iroquois Indian Museum near Howe Caverns since the 1980s. The pieces, which were found along the banks of the Mohawk River, will be on display at the Flint House beginning Sunday, May 18.

Cindy Pytlovany, a spokeswoman for Friends of the Flint House, said the group is excited to have the extensive collection on loan from the Moehle family.

The artifacts are part of the earliest inhabitants of Scotia-Glenville's history, said Pytlovany.

The collection began in a field in Glenville where Moehle was picking peas.

"He saw an unusual stone, picked it up, and the farmer gave him a nickel for the stone. It turned out to be an Indian arrowhead," said Pytlovany.

Moehle's collection grew, as he took his sons and grandsons out looking for the artifacts. It is believed by archeologists that most of the collection dates back to before the Native Americans took their place in the Mohawk Valley.

According to Gary Bernhardt of the Van-Epps Hartley Chapter of the New York State Archeological Association, much of the collection is from the Mohawk River area around Lock 8 and Maalwyck Park. Some parts of the collection from this area include Woodland period pottery shards, arrowheads, and perhaps the only known Native American bone tools to ever be found in the Glenville area.

"It's really an impressive collection of history for that area," said Bernhardt.

Bernhardt will be at the Flint House to discuss the artifacts, including how the earliest inhabitants of the area used them.

Friends of the Flint House will be hosting a reception for the public to view the exhibit on Sunday, May 18, from 1 to 3 p.m. The Flint House Museum is located at 421 Reynolds St. in Scotia.""

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