13JN203: Prairie Springs Site

Note: Additional images from Bowen's Prairie can be viewed in Flikr


Two other community centers besides the village of Bowen's Prairie were established on Bowen's Prairie in the 1850s. Richland was located south of the Military Road and east of the Bowen's Prairie townsitePrairie Springs is known only from a single deed and apparently consisted of a series of small lots situated south and west of the Bowen's Prairie townsiteArchaeological site 13JN203 is within the village of Prairie Springs and appears to represent one of at least six structures shown on an 1867 atlas. The site area was sold as a small lot in 1855 for $70. Ten years later, it sold as part of a slightly larger property for $354 and a year later was valued at $500. The current landowner reports that as many as four limestone structures once stood at this location. The abundance of structures coupled with evidence of the property's increasing value, hints at the presence of a rural industry or business. Archaeological investigation appears to show otherwise. Excavation disclosed the intact, limestone foundation wall of a rectangular structure. Other features uncovered include a privy, limestone-lined well, collapsed wall, wooden drainage tile, and small refuse pits. While the function of the main structure is not known, the artifacts and crude limestone mortar hint at its identity as a barn rather than a dwelling or commercial building.

Top of well
Top of well

Limestone well
Limestone well

Barn
Barn

Barn Picture 2
Barn