“It’s exciting,” volunteers help dig for history in York County

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SPRINGETTSBURY TOWNSHIP, YORK COUNTY, Pa.-- A crew of people are digging for history in Springettsbury Township. They are looking for Camp Security, which is a Revolutionary War Prisoner of War Camp. The land they are searching on is now preserved after the possibility of it being used for housing developments, according to archaeologist Steve Warfel.

Warfel is heading the dig. He's originally from Springettsbury and has been in the field for more than 40 years.

"The opportunity to do archaeology so close to where I grew up is very exciting," he said.

This is the third season for this project. He said they have found artifacts on the land, but they have not found the camp. One of the challenges is the camp was only there for 22 months, which he said doesn't give a lot of time for people to lose items.

Warfel said they have found artifacts from other historic periods as well. Other artifacts include 19th and 20th century artifacts and prehistoric tools. The artifacts claim people have been in the area for about five to six thousand years.

Warfel and one other archaeologist are the only paid workers, everyone else is a volunteer or student. The cost of the dig is about $20k. He said it is raised through donations from various people and organizations.

Warfel teaches the volunteers what to look for. He said many of them may never have done anything like this before.

"I like history," said Louise Sis of New Cumberland.

This is her second time helping with this particular dig. She said it's exciting to look for history. She was sifting through the dirt and was partnered with her friend Melanie Pariser from Carlisle. For Pariser, it was her first time she was doing this dig.

"It's exciting, very exciting," Sis said. "If somebody finds something, we're all happy about it."

Items the volunteers found include glass bottles, pottery, stoneware, and musket balls.

The project started on Monday with surface searches and Thursday started the excavation. The field work will last until July 1st. After that the collected items will be taken to lab for at least a week. Warfel will follow that up with a report, detailing their work.

If you are interested in seeing this search in person, on June 17, it will be open to the public to see their work. For more information visit there website.