An archaeology project at the historic Bush homestead near Tumwater revealed 4,000 artifacts this summer.
The dig by students from The Evergreen State College was led by faculty member and archaeologist Ulrike Krotscheck.
Team member Lexi Walsh will describe the experience in a program titled “Digging Up George Bush’s Homestead” at the Olympia Timberland Library from 7:30 to 8:45 p.m. Thursday (Jan. 14).
“Not all the artifacts were historic,” Krotscheck said. “Someone had a kegger there at some point.”
One hundred and seventy years ago, George and Isabella Bush came west by wagon train from Missouri, heading for Oregon Territory. Arriving in 1845, they were one of the first families to settle in what is now Tumwater.
Walsh said they were able to distinguish historic glass from modern and found 250 artifacts from which information could be found on their make and origin.
“We didn’t find any gold,” she said. “We have a couple of pieces of pottery that indicate that people who were living there in late 19th century imported housewares from the East Coast and Great Britain.
“It appears there was a metal working shop in the vicinity,” Krotscheck said. The group found the head of a Puget Sound felling axe, a double headed axe that was particular to the region.
Krotscheck hopes to return to the site for more excavation next summer.
All Timberland Regional Library programs are free and open to the public. The library is at 313 Eighth Ave. SE. For more information, contact the library at 360-352-0595 or www.TRL.org.