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Blanchard Springs Caverns mystery is focus of January CMVAS lecture

Jan. 12, 2009 -- The Central Mississippi Valley Archeological Society (CMVAS) will present a lecture, " Blanchard Springs Caverns: Deep Cave Archeology in the Arkansas Ozarks," by archeologist John Riggs, National Resource Conservation Service (NCRS), Little Rock. The lecture will be presented Tuesday, Jan. 27 at 7 p.m., in the ASU Museum's Room 182. The lecture is free and open to the public. Refreshments will be provided.

In 1955, Roger Bottoms, an avid cave explorer, descended into the depths of Blanchard Springs Caverns and discovered human remains very far from the natural opening. Immediately, the stories of a lost Indian explorer blossomed. I

n the 1960s, the U.S. Forest Service developed segments of the 14-mile-long cave for public tours. Controversy surrounding the origin of the human skeletal remains continued to flourish during the past half-century. Modern scientific analysis has shed light on this dark mystery. There is more to the story of the lost Indian explorer than one might think. This presentation by John Riggs will connect the dots to help solve this ancient mystery.

Dr. Julie Morrow also invites volunteers interested in field work or lab work for CMVAS to contact her. Dr. Morrow notes, "Several important projects are coming up this spring. One involves the remote sensing at Old Town Ridge in early March, and another project entails the cleaning up of one of Arkansas' most significant sites."

For details on the upcoming lecture, or to volunteer, contact Dr. Julie Morrow at (870) 972-2071, or e-mail her at



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