Richard Thornton | Aug 9, 2017 | 5
Memories of Poverty Point
Ah Richard! This email has started a LOT of talking & laughing in my house! The talking by my husband and the laughter is from me! My husband is from Epps/Poverty Point (his grandparents & great-grandparents moved there in the early 1920’s). His parents and grandparents houses were right on the highway about 100 yards apart & separated from Poverty Point on their North side by only fields & some woods. He and friends rode their bicycles up and down the mounds as children – they went everywhere by bicycle!! They collected plumb bobs etc and sold most of them to Mr. Carl Alexander for an average 10 cents each. Don’t know where all of his massive collection ended up, but he let LSU take some of it. Bruce said he had baskets and baskets of arrow heads and plumb bobs and stuff displayed under glass in cabinets. Bruce says if we filled our huge living room with his stuff it would be over a foot deep. He doesn’t think LSU got it all by any means. Bruce also says that Mr. Carl had number 3 washtubs filled with stuff and that he had “5000 times more stuff” than what Poverty Point has on display now .
He remembers another mound that is long gone because it was torn down, but at one time had a house perched on top of it and he watched the little girl of the family (who he went to school with) sliding down the wet slope on a cardboard box. There’s now a brick home perched on the exact spot where the mound was and all the dirt from the mound was spread out in the field currently across from his parents’ place to fill in a slue that ran thru the field. Man, the stories he can tell! The one that makes me sick is him finding what he calls a huge grinding stone (for grain) one day when he and friends were out roaming around on their bicycles. It was much too heavy to carry with him where they were going, so he left it in the fence row intending to come back for it later that day. When he got back later that day, it was gone.
At any rate his response to the email and the 90 day build scenario was, “Oh HELL!”
The feds tried to make the area a park when he was in high school but were fought by the local landowners and then finally the state came in to make a park out of it.
He has lots of stories to tell, but what has me laughing is his likening the guys who wrote the article to the the “educated people” who came over to one of the Hale’s places.
The Hale families owned much of the land that is now the park. Anyway, his dad came home one night from work talking about how some of these “highly educated guys” had marked themselves off a little grid on one of the Hale properties (he doesn’t remember exactly which one of them now) and started digging “with their spoons”.
Well, what was so hilarious to the locals was that the area where they were digging had many years previously been either a horse pen or a hog pen (there Bruce’s memory isn’t sure). The poles of the pen had rotted off a long time before. Well….these “highly educated guys” suddenly discovered where the posts had rotted off & got all excited talking about how many hundreds of years old they were!
The owners of the property were hearing it all & laughing their butts off!! They quickly told neighbors & the area being a small one, everybody knew what happened except the guys doing the digging! Needless to say, they didn’t impress anyone.
Guess that’s why Bruce says some people are educated and some are just “educated dumbasses”.
I figure I’ll wait till tomorrow to view the actual article and pictures. Give him time to cool down before he starts ranting and raving again!
Take care and the mapping project if a fabulous idea!! I envy you!
Lisa in Louisiana