Archaeologists dig through pre-civil war home - WSIL-TV 3 Southern Illinois

Archaeologists dig through pre-civil war home

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POPE COUNTY, Ill. -- Archaeological investigation continues on one of the few African American settlements in Southern Illinois. Miller Grove in Pope County is a community that was founded by freed African Americans in the 1840s.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture's Forest Service and Southern Illinois University Archeology Field School teamed up to have students dig in the Miller Grove area. Mary McCorvie from Shawnee National Forest says this archaeological investigation continues on one of the few African American settlements in southern Illinois.

The Miller Grove community was established by emancipated families from Tennessee in the 1840s and thrived until the early 1920s. Miller Grove was founded in the 1840s by freed African Americans, the home belonged to the community's founders, Bedford and Abby Miller.

Research includes the house and outbuildings that belonged to founders, Bedford and Abby Miller, as well as the community's church, school, and large cemetery.

Archeologist from Shawnee National Forrest says, Miller's Grove was also a passage for the underground railroad before the civil war.

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