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Relics of Greene Ville's Past

Relics from the past can teach us a great deal in the hands of someone who can read the details. Garst Museum has a collection of artifacts from the encampment of Anthony Wayne and his legion. Native American metal, stone and other implements are also featured.

The native people traded with settlers and craftspeople for many years. Most of the relics found from the 1700's are iron, silver and tin. Stone tools and arrowheads are generally from prehistoric peoples.

The Archaeology Committee of the Treaty of Greene Ville Bicentennial Commission sponsored archaeological excavations on Wayne's fort at Greene Ville during 1994 and 1995 under the direction of the late professional archaeologist, Tony DeRegnaucourt. a total of six localities within the fort area (which covered almost 60 acres of about eight modern city blocks) were tested  by the Archaeology Committee and volunteers. The fortification was built of rough heavy logs set and rammed upright in a trench and extended some fifteen feet above the ground with a strip of timber pinned near the top to keep them in position. Some of the exterior walls were probably formed, in part, by the outer, or back walls of the barracks and larger building of the fort.

In late June of 1995, a 10 by 18 foot area of a church parking lot was examined. It contained an undisturbed trash midden area that was probably near the soldiers' huts close to the South Gate of the fort. This midden area yielded over 1,000 artifacts diagnostic to the 1793 to 1797 occupation of the fort.

Artifacts identified include a Charlesville flintlock, a felling axe, a fascine knife, part of a 3 pound howitzer cannonball, shoe buckles, a heel plate, wagon cleat, numerous buckles used on uniform and clothing. Particularly significant finds include an  officer's sleeve links, one set with flying eagles, French and English gunflints brass collar clasp plates, uniform buttons with the distinctive frog-legged eagle motif which belonged to Anthony Wayne's Legion.

Recent exploration of an area to the west of what is thought to be the western boundary of the original Greene Ville fortification, have uncovered what is thought to be the remains of one of the outer block houses ( exterior redoubts that defended the fort.  

Tradition says that the pioneers who settled in the vicinity of Dayton, Ohio, following Wayne's treaty, are credited with burning many of the buildings of the fort, after its abandonment in the fall of 1796, in order to get the hand-wrought hinges, locks, nails and other hardware to be used in constructing their homes.

 

Digging in Fort Jefferson

Fort Jefferson was built by the army of General Arthur St. Clair in October 1792. It was used as a military post during the campaign against the Northwest Indian tribes. At the time when the log fort was built, a 14 Star American flag was flown over Ft. Jefferson. The fort was named after Thomas Jefferson, then Secretary of State, who later became President.

In the summer of 1930, H. R. MacPherson, curator of parks for the Ohio State Archaeological and Historical Society, and with the cooperation of the Greenville Historical Society, made an extensive exploration of the Fort Jefferson site.

What they located were the approximate location of the four blockhouses and the location of an underground magazine. It was partially faced with logs, 25 feet deep and eight feet square in the lower section, with a tunnel six feet deep, three feet wide and 80 feet in length, leading from the upper part of the magazine to the interior of the fort.

Also found were traces of another passageway leading from the southwest blockhouse to an enclosed spring box 90 feet down the slope of the hill. There were indications of a passageway leading from the northwest blockhouse. Also found were traces of the foundation of the northeast blockhouse, ash pits outside the walls and considerable partially burned timbers and a rope windlass.

Among the large assortment of small relics found were bullets, metal military buttons, brass buckles, gun parts, flints, axes, knives, forks and spoons, and fragments of crockery and table dishes.

*Information taken from an article in the Greenville Daily Advocate, June 30, 1993.

Treaty Boulder

This boulder sits in front of Greenville's City Hall at the traffic circle. It stands inside what was the original Fort Greene Ville. It commemorates the signing of the Treaty of Greene Ville.

The text of the memorial boulder states the following:

 

To commemorate the Treaty of Greene Ville Signed August 31, 1795 by General Anthony Wayne representing the United States Government and the Chiefs and agents of the Allied Indian Tribe of the Territory Northwest of the Ohio River. 1906.

Treaty of Greenville Peace Pipe

The calumet thought to be used at the Treaty of Greene Ville is magnificent. Its bowl is shaped from red catlinite of possible Minnesota origin with a long elaborately carved stem. Beautifully inlaid in pewter or lead the calumet has an overall length of 40 1/2 inches and the bowl is 3 1/4 inches in height.

The Garst Museum displays a reproducton of the calumet of peace of the Fifteen Fires of the United States used by Anthony Wayne during the proceedings of the Treaty of Greene Ville. The original is preserved and on view at the Ohio Historical Society in Columbus, Ohio.

Source: Timeline, April May, 1988.