On a series of large rocks pushing through the Susquehanna River in Lancaster County, hundreds of rock carvings -- or petroglyphs - appear, thought to have been etched into the rocks 1,000 years ago by Algonquin Indians.
Bucknell Associate Professor of English Alf Siewers, German and Humanities Professor Katie Faull, Geography and Environmental Studies Professor Ben Marsh, and summer researcher Joey McMullen, Class of '09, visited the petroglyphs site in Safe Harbor this summer as part of an effort to uncover and promote the history of the Susquehanna River Valley.
The petroglyph trip was part of a summer project sponsored by the Conservation Fund and the R.K. Mellon and McKenna Foundations. The project relates to a cross-disciplinary program, "Stories of the Susquehanna Valley" and Bucknell's Nature and Human Communities Initiative, which includes efforts to map an extension of a historic water trail, as well as the Susquehanna Writers' Institute and other collaborative projects.
"When you sit under the sky dome formed where the petroglyphs lie, you are in the middle of a kind of environmental text that suggests ways to rethink the relationship between story and nature in which we are formed as human beings," Siewers said. "And the way in which these symbols appear only at certain times of day, and in orientation to certain times of the year, is magical."
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