Event: The Archaeology of Two Nineteenth Century Cabins in Kenosha County


The Archaeology of Two Nineteenth Century Cabins in Kenosha County


Highland Park Historical Society presents ‘The Archaeology of Two Nineteenth Century Cabins in Kenosha County.’ The program will be held in the auditorium of the Highland Park Public Library, 494 Laurel Avenue, at 7 p.m. on Monday, May 20th, 2019.    Stupey Cabin, next to the library, will be open from 6:00 pm until 6:45 pm for a viewing.

Archaeological field research at two nineteenth century Euro-American cabins near UW-Parkside in the Kenosha area in southeastern Wisconsin illustrates what we can learn about day-to-day life in our region at different times in the past. Trapper Jacob Montgomery and his family built a cabin in a lush and supportive forest setting near the Pike River in 1834, and lived there until 1839. Around 1855, another cabin was built some 150 feet away, and was occupied by carpenter Edward Coonley and his family until approximately 1870. Each of these short site occupations give us snapshots of many aspects of Nineteenth Century life in our region, including the early era of pioneer settlement. The remains of the houses and the materials left behind by these families comprise “the tangible debris of everyday life.” What we’ve learned about these two cabins adds significantly to the very limited historical information recorded for the people living at this locality.

Dr. Robert F. Sasso is Associate Professor of Anthropology, in the Department of Geography and Anthropology, and Coordinator of the Museum Studies Program at the University of Wisconsin-Parkside in Kenosha. A Highland Park resident, Bob has been researching the archaeology of Wisconsin and the Upper Midwest for over forty years, investigating late prehistoric and early historic cultures of the Great Lakes and Upper Mississippi Valley, and focusing on past settlement patterns, Native American agriculture, and human relationships to the environment. For much of the past twenty-five years, he also has been investigating the archaeology and ethnohistory of the historic Potawatomi and early Euro-American life in our region and has recorded information on hundreds of sites in southeastern Wisconsin and northeastern Illinois. Since 1998, Bob and Daniel Joyce, Director of the Kenosha Public Museums, have collaborated in the investigation of a series of early nineteenth century sites in southeastern Wisconsin, most recently including the site of the first known Euro-American cabin ever constructed in Kenosha County.

For further information, please contact the Highland Park Historical Society: 847.432.7090 or   Admission is free.