Saturday, June 02, 2007

Ancient Artifacts Found In Lake Okeechobee

Bodies and Boats Found

BELLE GLADE, FL. -- State and Palm Beach County archaeologists are exploring a recently discovered site containing what may be 16th century boats and bodies.  Authorities were notified by Belle Glade resident Boots Boyer that he found some artifacts in the muck and mud near a clump of trees along the shores of Lake Okeechobee about two months ago.  The lake is at historic low water levels, allowing land to be exposed that is normally underwater.

State Archaeologist Ryan Wheeler  says Palm Beach County has been issued a permit to begin a study of the site. Although the artifacts most likely predate any existing Indian tribes arrival in Florida, Wheeler has contacted the Miccosukee and Seminole Tribes.

Archaeologist Christian Davenport, with the Palm Beach County planning division, has inspected the site, and the Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission is patrolling the area, keeping away anyone who might disturb the site.  It is illegal to disturb any historic or archaeological site in Florida, or remove any items from it.

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