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Vandals Strike SIUE Dig Site

Megan Lynch
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Southern Illinois University-Edwardsville
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EDWARDSVILLE, Ill. (KMOX) – Robbers wipe out weeks of work on a Native American dig site at Southern Illinois University-Edwardsville.

Archaeology students had been in a field on the south end of campus for weeks, carefully excavating Native American ruins.

They had covered the site with tarps and secured their tools Friday afternoon, but early Monday morning returned to find most of the dig had been rummaged through or caved in.

“They actually unearthed a fire pit, the artifacts in it were either taken or destroyed.  They had a partial wall from a building they had started to unearth and that was partially destroyed,” says campus police Lt. Kevin Schmoll. 

Schmoll says heavy rains over the weekend appear to have destroyed any tracks or other evidence the vandals may have left behind.  “This is probably someone who knew what was going on out there or has looked for Native American artifacts themselves and saw that this club was out there doing a dig.”

Schmoll says besides instruments and tools that were stolen any artifacts that were taken had far more historical value than monetary value. 

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