Researchers know that Susquehannocks did establish multiple settlements in the area, including on Palmer’s Island, even if temporary, for purposes of trade and resource harvesting. Yet the presence of so many remains actually buried ceremoniously with implements indicates a more permanent situation than merely a battlefield or a fishing camp. This leaves us the question – was Octorara an interim Susquehannock settlement between John Smith’s voyage and full encroachment of Europeans 30 years later? Or was this a pre-contact non-Susquehannock town in an oft-used prime location for regional trade – such as Shenk’s Ferry or Clemson Island cultures? Octoraro, which means Rushing Waters, is located in Cecil County, Maryland. Octoraro Creek is a 22.1-mile-long (35.6 km) tributary of the Susquehanna River, joining it 9 miles (14 km) above the Susquehanna’s mouth at Chesapeake Bay.

$0 NHSM Archaeology Club Members
$5 Non-Members Suggested Donation

Matt Schneider’s bio: Matt is a member of the NHSM Archaeology club who considers himself a novice amateur archaeologist, trained in history in college, with some anthropology background, and currently working as a Clinical Psychotherapist, Social Worker, and Geriatric Specialist. He is a 2003 graduate of York College and a 2007 graduate of the University of Pennsylvania. He has also completed coursework with Oxford University’s online archaeology program. He’s participated in several digs over the years including with Fordham University and the University of Virginia.

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