The Lighthouse Tour at Peoples State Forest

This trail in Peoples State Forest is another reminder that colonial artifacts can be just off any nature trail in the state of Connecticut. The signs along the trail are very informative as they point out parts of the community, which was composed of Indians and African Americans during colonial times. The name “Lighthouse” was given by the stage coach drivers who drove along the east side of the Farmington River and were always glad to see the lights from the fires on the hillside as it indicated that their next stop, New Hartford, was only five miles ahead. If we do have authentic archeological ruins in the eastern woods, then this site stands as an excellent model. Though the ghost images are a little hokey, they illuminated for my younger hiking companions and me exactly the function of each site we visited. So, given that immediate display of visual information, they achieve an excellent rating. This authentic, documented African American and Indian graveyard also contains examples of unmarked fieldstones being used as markers. As we continue to be more mindful of fieldstones along the western boundaries of other colonial graveyards, returning to these gravestones as a model will be useful.

There are several great Youtube videos posted by the Barkhamsted Historical Society that are worth viewing.

About Bill Sullivan

I am an English teacher working with great students at Suffield Academy. I also teach seniors in various project-based learning environments. Some of the #PBL topics included global issues, such as Pandemics, Climate Change, and Water; more recently I have asked students to research and identify topics important to our school community and their generation. We curate these topics with a #StudentCenteredPBL. For the past eleven years, I also created a driving question for a class to research a local history mystery and present their findings in a community program partnering with our local historical society. These topics encompass researching the lives of enslaved individuals who were contributors to the foundation of our community.
This entry was posted in American Studies, Archaeology, Colonial Literature, Connecticut River Valley History, Local History, Native Americans, Nature Trails, Old Center Cemetery, Service Learning. Bookmark the permalink.

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