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Wabatongushi Lake Archaeology

Twin Rocks is an excellent summer walleye spot on Wabatongushi Lake within sight of Loch Island Lodge. In the 1960s and early 1970s, it was also the site of some fascinating archaeological discoveries potentially dating back to before 1000 B.C.

Bifaces from Wabatongushi Lake
Bifaces from Wabatongushi Lake

 

Bifaces from Wabatongushi Lake
Bifaces from Wabatongushi Lake

 

Wabatongushi Lake and the surrounding waterways have long been important trade and travel routes from Lake Superior to James Bay, and were home to Indigenous communities, some of which remain permanently today, such as the Missanabie Cree First Nation on neighbouring Dog Lake.

Chert bifaces (stone implements) of various shapes were found first by Craig Liddle and Barry Parrington in 1969. Later professional excavations turned up more bifaces, flakes from the creation of the bifaces, pottery, and a copper projectile point. The archaeologists tentatively dated the items to the Shield Archaic period, approximately 6000-1000 B.C., and categorized them as Ojibway due to similar artifacts being found in the Wawa area. The artifacts went to the Royal Ontario Museum in Toronto, Ontario for display and further research.

Last October, we uncovered a 1972 report in the Trapper’s Lounge office. It appears to be an internal document for museum staff. A more extensive 23-page monograph was published for the public in 1974 and includes sketches, coloured photographs, and more detailed analysis of the artifacts. Click here to read the 1974 monograph; the 1972 report is shown below.

ROM Archaeological Newsletter
ROM Archaeological Newsletter- Page 1

 

ROM Archaeological Newsletter
ROM Archaeological Newsletter- Page 2

 

ROM Archaeological Newsletter
ROM Archaeological Newsletter- Page 3

 

ROM Archaeological Newsletter
ROM Archaeological Newsletter- Page 4

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