Dubuque's ancient history unearthed in Southwest Arterial land - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Dubuque's ancient history unearthed in Southwest Arterial land

Posted:
DUBUQUE (KWWL) -

Progress and history are colliding as archeologists dig up Dubuque's past.

This is on land the city intends to purchase in the construction of Dubuque's Southwest Arterial, a major traffic mitigation project intended to connect Highway 20 with Highway 151 in Dubuque.

Sifting through history is a dirty job, but this team of archeologists say it's an important one. Leah Rogers is the team's lead investigator.

"Roads do need to be built, but it's wonderful that we can also build our roads but then not destroy our heritage in the process as well," Rogers said Thursday afternoon at the site.

She said it's land rich with history.

"Every place we've dug, we've found stuff," Rogers said.

That includes Wednesday's exciting find. After two months on site, the team found its first complete tool.

Jason Thompson, an anthropological archeologist and UNI professor, held the arrowhead-like tool in his hand Thursday.

"What this is, in my opinion, is some sort of leather-working, hide-working tool," Thompson said. "An implement for piercing a hide."

He said the people who made the tool were probably on that land sometime between 7,000 B.C. and 2,500 B.C.

"The people in this area were still living as what we would call foragers or hunter/gatherers," Thompson said. "They were not agricultural, they were not settled in permanent encampments or villages."

While the team can't uncover every artifact before Southwest Arterial construction begins, they can unearth enough to tell about the history of the place.

"We're here to mitigate the impact of any potential cultural resources, you know. Excavate, document and prepare the area for development," Thompson said, "so I'm not pained by it because it will provide a lot of other folks with jobs."

To these archeologists, it's a matter of harvesting all the data they reasonably can and then letting progress take its course.

The team hopes to finish its excavation before the snow comes.

Dubuque's Southwest Arterial is an estimated $100 million project that, upon ground-breaking, is set to see three years of construction before completion. The exact ground-breaking date is not yet set.

Bob Schiesl, assistant city engineer, said Dubuque is short some $34 million in funds for the project. While trying to secure those, he said, the city is tying up all the project's loose ends, including the archeological excavation on sites deemed historic, wetland studies and completion of the final design.

  • NEWSNEWSMore>>

  • Toddler crashes Jeep, runs home to watch cartoons

    Toddler crashes Jeep, runs home to watch cartoons

    Monday, July 28 2014 7:08 AM EDT2014-07-28 11:08:14 GMT
    Police say a toddler crashed a Jeep into an Oregon home, then ran back to his home to watch cartoons.More >>
    Police say a toddler crashed a Jeep into an Oregon home, then ran back to his home to watch cartoons.More >>
  • Renters may have changes coming their way

    Renters may have changes coming their way

    Monday, July 28 2014 6:12 AM EDT2014-07-28 10:12:51 GMT
    The idea of living in a four-bedroom apartment with three unrelated roommates, may be coming to a stop in Cedar Falls. Task Force Member, Fred Abraham, has proposed the idea of reducing the maximum number of unrelated renters in a single-family home from four to three. He also think that any single family homes that are converted into rentals should either rent only to families or to no more than two unrelated people. His ideas behind these proposals is to reduce density and "preserve the cha...More >>
    The idea of living in a four-bedroom apartment with three unrelated roommates, may be coming to a stop in Cedar Falls. Task Force Member, Fred Abraham, has proposed the idea of reducing the maximum number of unrelated renters in a single-family home from four to three. He also think that any single family homes that are converted into rentals should either rent only to families or to no more than two unrelated people. His ideas behind these proposals is to reduce density and "preserve the cha...More >>
  • Goodwill closes one store, builds another

    Goodwill closes one store, builds another

    Monday, July 28 2014 4:27 AM EDT2014-07-28 08:27:14 GMT
    Goodwill Industries of Northeast Iowa plans to close its store in the Crossroads Center area, and build a new one.For the last 5-6 years Goodwill has been working towards getting away from leased facilities and towards owning their own facilities. The current store in one of the older units in the area, and is very dated, according to a Goodwill employee. There is also current concerns with security issues and safety problems. The store will be less square footage, but according to Chris Hars...More >>
    Goodwill Industries of Northeast Iowa plans to close its store in the Crossroads Center area, and build a new one.For the last 5-6 years Goodwill has been working towards getting away from leased facilities and towards owning their own facilities. The current store in one of the older units in the area, and is very dated, according to a Goodwill employee. There is also current concerns with security issues and safety problems. The store will be less square footage, but according to Chris Hars...More >>
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 WorldNow and KWWL. All Rights Reserved.
For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service and Mobile Privacy Policy & Terms of Service.

Persons with disabilities who need assistance with issues relating to the content of this station's public inspection file should contact Administrative Assistant Sandy Youngblut at 319-291-1259. Questions or concerns relating to the accessibility of the FCC's online public file system should be directed to the FCC at 888-225-5322, at 888-835-5322 (TTY) or at fccinfo@fcc.gov.