Select Page

Georgia Trust for Historic Preservation invites Native Americans to express their concerns at statewide Historic Preservation Conference

Georgia Trust for Historic Preservation invites Native Americans to express their concerns at statewide Historic Preservation Conference


Over the past 12 years,  members of the People of One Fire have observed in horror as one Native American town site or mound after another have been bulldozed in Alabama, Georgia and Tennessee.  There are federal and state laws in place, which protect Native American burial sites, but the politicians in these three states are not enforcing these laws.  In 2006,  newly appointed bureaucrats in Georgia’s state government banned the annual Creek Indian Celebration at Sweetwater Creek State Park, intentionally insulted the elected leaders of the Muskogee-Creek Nation, then tried to convert Etula (Etowah Mounds) and its satellite towns into a fictional Cherokee province.  They would have succeeded, had not the People Of One Fire been formed.  Nothing is going to change folks unless you start asserting our traditional values in the public arena.   Here is an opportunity for your sane, wise, spiritual voices to be heard by a broad cross-section of those people, who would be most supportive of our approach to community development.  Grannies!  The conference is in Macon, GA where the locals are already strongly supportive of the preservation of Creek and Uchee Heritage Sites.  It is an ideal location to “toot your whistle.” The more POOF members, who submit their ideas to the Georgia Trust, the more likely that their administrators will pay attention. Please contact them soon, before a conference schedule is finalized.


Georgia Statewide Preservation Conference

The Georgia Trust for Historic Preservation, Georgia Historic Preservation Division (HPD) and the Georgia Alliance of Preservation Commissions invite you to the Statewide Historic Preservation Conference, September 12-14, 2018 in Macon, GA.

The statewide preservation conference brings together preservationists, preservation professionals, preservation non-profit members, board members, planners, architects, architectural historians, archaeologists, city and county administrators, city and county council members, city and county attorneys, landscape architects, historic preservation commission members, genealogists, historians, and planning and preservation students from across Georgia.

Call for Session Proposals

We’re currently accepting proposals for speaker sessions and speaker nominations for the 2018 Statewide Historic Preservation Conference.

Sessions should highlight current Georgia preservation, history, architectural history, archaeology, cultural landscapes, middle Georgia regional history, landscape architecture, preservation law, and other closely related topics.

The conference session committee desires sessions that will be interactive, engage the audience, present fresh approaches, and be easily applicable to a variety of participants from all over Georgia.

Deadline for submissions is Monday, July 16.

To submit a proposed topic or speaker, go to:

The following two tabs change content below.
Richard Thornton is a professional architect, city planner, author and museum exhibit designer-builder. He is today considered one of the nation’s leading experts on the Southeastern Indians. However, that was not always the case. While at Georgia Tech Richard was the first winner of the Barrett Fellowship, which enabled him to study Mesoamerican architecture and culture in Mexico under the auspices of the Institutio Nacional de Antropoligia e Historia. Dr. Roman Piňa-Chan, the famous archaeologist and director of the Museo Nacional de Antropologia, was his fellowship coordinator. For decades afterward, he lectured at universities and professional societies around the Southeast on Mesoamerican architecture, while knowing very little about his own Creek heritage. Then he was hired to carry out projects for the Muscogee-Creek Nation in Oklahoma. The rest is history. Richard is the Tribal Historic Preservation Officer for the KVWETV (Coweta) Creek Tribe and a member of the Perdido Bay Creek Tribe. In 2009 he was the architect for Oklahoma’s Trail of Tears Memorial at Council Oak Park in Tulsa. He is the president of the Apalache Foundation, which is sponsoring research into the advanced indigenous societies of the Lower Southeast.



    Do you plan on submitting a proposal?

    • I might. If I submit it alone, the archaeologists would probably try to block it. Two years ago, a large architecture firm in Downtown Atlanta asked me to give their staff a lecture. They received a lot of angry calls from Georgia archaeologists, even though I am an architect and this was a private event for architects in their company.


    Why don’t you submit a proposal on behalf of the Coweta Creek Confederacy and/or the non-profit Operation New Earth (est 2008 with most work done in Vietnam with landmine, herbicidal poison victims)- as you may recall, we made you a member of this organization some time ago for your preservation work here!?!


    The need to preserve these last remaining sites in situ and/or have them professionally excavated while completely or even partially intact can not be understated. Once these sites are razed to the ground and redeveloped they are gone forever along with the centuries and millennia of ancestral history that they once contained.

    The simplest idea would be to have the existing state and federal laws fully ENFORCED. To do that however you need to make your voices heard loud and clear. BTW… The timing of this conference couldn’t be better.,_2018

    • Please make your comments known to the Georgia Trust. Native Americans have been virtually silent in historic preservation efforts.


    I think a simple answer could preserve. Every site should be located, and then well documented with historical plaques, and maybe not just one plaque but several. Nobody with a bulldozer would begin to excavate then. Maybe have a maintenance check on the plaques once a year or less. If sites don’t have ids, construction workers will not know they are historic and bowl them over. That looks like what occurred at the lake you have the photo of here.

    • In this particular case, the owner intentionally bulldozed the mound to widen his view of a nearby mountain, while he was fishing or having a party.


    I can report another historical preservation of an indian camp that went undesignated with any historical plaque as far as I know. This is on James Island, SC in the Lighthouse Point subdivision about halfway down Ft. Johnson Road which is a long road. There is a peninsula going out toward Clark Sound and Morris Island that was undeveloped up until about 10 years ago. My folks lived on the Parrot Creek peninsula across Parrot Creek and the marsh from LIghthouse Point, and I lived there off and on with them up until they died in 2015 and 2016. I read in the Charleston newspaper where construction workers building the road, Parrot Point Drive, through a private subdivision being built in Lighthouse Point unearthed indian artifacts. They stopped work of course. Well, I used to drive through there before a private electronic gate that is always closed now was put up. Some houses had already been built before this gate was put up. No historical plaque was up then when the road was completed. The whereabouts of the artifacts were never promulgated in the Charleston newspaper as I recollect. Research on what tribe the artifacts were from was never promulgated. Anytime there is a gap is someone’s knowledge, such as the further knowledge of these artifacts, that’s when research can be conducted. Maybe Richard can research this. The area there is a beautiful area of mostly heavily shaded live oak trees, no southern pines, and lots were all to be at least 1 acre.

    • South Carolina and Florida are doing a much better job of protecting and honoring Native American sites than the other Southern states. Virginia pretends that no Natives lived there west of the Chesapeake Bay. LOL


        well SC sure didn’t do much for this site; they got the artifacts, and now where are they?; also no plaque to my knowledge was erected, although this new subdivision, I think called Belle Glade(?), Belle something of another, is a ritzy electronic gate one that’s always closed, and maybe a plaque was erected after the gate was installed; the subdivision across the marsh and creek where my folks lived had an electronic gate but it was open during the day to let in commercial vehicles and really anybody driving through; anyway, the article would be in the archives of the Post and Courier newspaper; the paper is kinda money oriented and might want a visitor to subscribe; that has to be done even if reading an article now, there’s no free articles; that particular subdivision on Lighthouse Point is really pretty and tranquil, and I can see why indians would have wanted a camp there

        • In Alabama and Georgia, the mounds are just getting bulldozed . . . with archaeologists nowhere around.


            that must mean the kingdom of Heaven is at hand for the ancestors who built the mounds, or that they can now raise Hell until then to get them there quicker; you know, Fig Island, with its 20′ high mound, is still there; even as I write I am on top of a mound 23′ above sea level in my shed, a mound determined to be no less than 4,000 years old said an acquaintence of mine living nearby who was the field geologist for the Department of Natural Resources here until he retired recently; I am well aware of the similarity and perhaps link of my lot and Fig; I have planted Fig trees up top here

    • Does your shell mound contain pottery? If so, what style of pottery?


        It’s all dirt and trees, shrubs. No indian oyster shells. Maybe my lot was an old indian burial ground to have the dead fertilize roots of trees underneath, just burying them in raw dirt. This beach, Folly Beach, used to be called “Coffin Land” in the 1700’s. Sick passengers of ships were dumped here to survive on their own and were not allowed to sail into Charleston because of fear of getting everybody sick. Now there’s alot of folks who live here and come to here to recreate and eat at the many restaurants and bars……….Over there on James Island at Belle Terre, if nobody puts up a historical plaque, then the story of the indian camp will fade away. I might can do some research on it, but if the Post and Courier is going to want me to subscribe just to contact their archives dept. then I don’t know if it’s worth it. The construction workers didn’t divert the road with a roundabout around the camp, but a roundabout was just put in down the street a few miles over there- going around no culturally significant indian camp, just helping the traffic flow. Maybe Belle Terre can still construct a roundabout around where the camp was, just tear up the road there and put a plaque up, maybe say what was found.


        Richard, as far as historic preservation is concerned, I did a little research the past hour on the Belle Terre subdivision on Lighthouse Point, James Island, SC, and the local Charleston newspaper Post and Courier had nothing in their archives. Well, that’s how I found out about that road construction uncovering the artifacts, so they’re covering something up, why I don’t know. But I did come across some links that are relevant. I visited the following link: Scrolling down 2/3 of the page you come upon a link in the left margin entitled “Lighthouse Point Shell Ring,” Charleston County. That article describes a shell midden and artifacts. The address is secret and blocked out on the Dept. of the Interior form on that Lighthouse Point Shell Ring link that can also be clicked on to visit. However I knew there was only one park over there, so I went on Google Earth, and the midden is in the park right at the entrance to Belle Terre where the artifacts were recently found. So that links both indian areas. Why this new subdivision is trying to erase any connection to the indian past is beyond me, but the news of the recent find already was reported. Maybe I heard about it on tv, but the newspaper would have then reported it also. I might try to contact City Hall at James island to do more research, they have a little city hall in a shopping center over there. James Island is a sea island between here on Folly Beach and downtown Charleston.


Leave a reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Subscribe to POOF via Email

Enter your email address to subscribe to this website and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 825 other subscribers

The Information World is changing!

People of One Fire needs your help to evolve with it.

We are now celebrating the 11th year of the People of One Fire. In that time, we have seen a radical change in the way people receive information. The magazine industry has almost died. Printed newspapers are on life support. Ezines, such as POOF, replaced printed books as the primary means to present new knowledge. Now the media is shifting to videos, animated films of ancient towns, Youtube and three dimensional holograph images.

During the past six years, a privately owned business has generously subsidized my research as I virtually traveled along the coast lines and rivers of the Southeast. That will end in December 2017. I desperately need to find a means to keep our research self-supporting with advertising from a broader range of viewers. Creation of animated architectural history films for POOF and a People of One Fire Youtube Channel appears to be the way. To do this I will need to acquire state-of-art software and video hardware, which I can not afford with my very limited income. Several of you know personally that I live a very modest lifestyle. If you can help with this endeavor, it will be greatly appreciated.

Support Us!

Richard Thornton . . . the truth is out there somewhere!

Pin It on Pinterest