Archeological Dig underway in Springettsbury Township could lead the way to Revolutionary War prison camp

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Back a dirt road, and tucked in the woods in Springettsbury Township, volunteers dig away. The team, Friends of Camp Security, is looking for any evidence of the Revolutionary War prison camp, Camp Security, which dates back to the 1700s. The camp held British prisoners who were captured at the Battle of Saratoga.

"Camp Security was actually one of nearly a dozen prison camps that existed in the Mid-Atlantic region during the Revolutionary War period. The sad fact is that all of those other sites have been destroyed by development," said the project's senior archaeologist, Steve Warfel. "The documents and memoirs of the people who were actually here tell us there were two camps, one called Camp Security, the original stockade compound, the other called Camp Indulgence. And, called 'Indulgence' simply because those people were not surrounded by a stockade, they were not heavily guarded," said Warfel.

Just two weeks into an official archaeological dig off of Locust Grove Road, the team has found several small artifacts including a piece of British pottery. On Friday, the team made perhaps their most promising find, a two-foot section of dark-stained soil; possible evidence of a palisade. A clue they might be in the right spot.

"We’re excited about the dark stain right here in the ground," said Warfel. "This is the most encouraging thing we’ve seen to date so we could be on it right here [the camp] but we need to do more work to say with certainty."

To pay for the dig, Friends of Camp Security took out a loan. A date has been set for the public to check out the site on June 18, 2015. For more information, or to donate to the project click here.

 

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