Will Newark Earthworks join National Park System? 6.25

Written by David Green.

The Ohio Historical Society Board of Trustees will consider a proposal requesting that the National Park Service assess management options for the Newark Earthworks at its June 27 meeting at the Ohio Historical Center. If approved, the study would examine the costs and benefits of management of the Newark Earthworks by the National Park Service and evaluate different ways that the site might be affiliated or become part of the National Park system, according to William K. Laidlaw, Jr., OHS executive director and CEO.

“In addressing concerns about access to and operations of the Newark Earthworks, an advisory group, made up of members of the community, local officials, Native Americans and archaeologists, recommended that the Ohio Historical Society explore the possibility of turning over management to the National Park Service in the best interests of the site,” Laidlaw said. “Requesting that a study be conducted would be the first step in that process.”

The Newark Earthworks is a complex that is 2,000 years old and at one time covered approximately four square miles. Scholars recognize it as the largest geometric earthworks ever created. Although much of it has been destroyed by more than a century of urban development, the most significant parts remaining are the Octagon, Great Circle and Wright earthworks. Together these three earthworks comprise the Newark Earthworks, one of 59 sites administered by the Ohio Historical Society.  Currently, the Newark Earthworks are being considered for the World Heritage List, which recognizes natural and cultural sites of significance to all peoples of the world.

“The Society does not currently have the resources to maintain and manage the site as it should,” Laidlaw said. “With the earthworks being considered for World Heritage status, the need for improved access will increase.”

According to Laidlaw, once the OHS Board approves the proposal, the National Park Service will be able to start its planning process for the study. However, any recommendations from the final study report would need approval from the OHS Board, the General Assembly and Congress before any course of action is taken, he said.

The Ohio Historical Society is a nonprofit organization that serves as the state’s partner in preserving and interpreting Ohio’s history, natural history and archaeology.  For more information about programs and events, go online at www.ohiohistory.org .

  • Front.fireworks
    FIREWORKS erupt Saturday night over Morenci’s Wakefield Park during the waning hours of the Town and Country Festival. Additional festival photos are inside.
  • Pipeline Spread
    LINED UP—Lengths of pipe were put in place last week along the route of the Rover natural gas pipeline that will stretch from Defiance, Ohio, to Ontario, Canada. Topsoil was removed before the pipes were laid out. The 42-inch diameter pipeline is scheduled for completion in November.
  • Front.grieders
    ONE-TWO PUNCH—Morenci’s Griffin Grieder saved his best for last, running his fastest time ever in the 110-meter high hurdles at the state finals Saturday in Grand Rapids to finish first in the state in Div. IV. His brother Luke, a junior (right), claimed the state runner-up spot. Bulldog junior Bailee Dominique placed seventh in the 100-meter dash.
  • Front.sidewalk
    MORENCI senior class president Mikayla Price leads the way Sunday afternoon from the Church of the Nazarene to the United Methodist Church for the baccalaureate ceremony. Later in the day, 39 members of the senior class received diplomas in the high school gymnasium.
  • Front.F.school
    PROGRESS continues on the agriculture classroom addition at Fayette High School. The project will add 2,900 square feet of space and include an overhead door that would allow equipment to be driven inside. The building should be ready for the start of school in August. Work on ball fields and a running track is also underway.
  • Front.teacher Leading
    PRESCHOOL MUSIC—Fayette band director Jeffrey Dunford spends the last half hour of the day leading the full-day preschool class in musical activities. Additional photos are on page 7 of this week’s Observer.
  • Front.poles
    MOVING EAST—Utility workers continue their slow progress east along U.S. 20 south of Morenci. New electrical poles are put in place before wiring is moved into place.
  • Face Paint
    FUN NIGHT FUN—Savanna Miles sits patiently while Abbie White works on a face paint design Friday during the Morenci PTO Fun Night. Gracie Snead watches the progress after having spent time in the chair. Abbie was one of several volunteer painters, each creating their own unique look. Additional photos are on the back page of this week’s Observer.

Weekly newspaper serving SE Michigan and NW Ohio - State Line Observer ©2006-2017