Hubbard Park artifacts look into IC past

BY DI STAFF | NOVEMBER 13, 2014 5:00 AM

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Volunteers gathered in Hubbard Park for another excavation in which old ceramic was found, as well as bottles, parts of a doll’s face, animal bones, and seeds that passed through someone’s body. All of the items were found 6 feet underground, and the items will be stored in the University of Iowa’s Clinton Street Building. The purpose of collecting these items is to find out more about the history of Iowa City. The items that are found are never assigned a financial value but only kept for the Iowa City’s records.

Thousands of seeds that passed through people’s bodies were collected. The seeds, which are either raspberry or blackberry seeds, were found outside of what used to be an outhouse in the 1850s. Though the seeds passed through someone’s body, there was no excrement attached to them because of the amount of time that has passed.

Several bottles were found around 6 feet underground; they are intact because they were stored in a cistern in what used to be someone’s backyard. The bottles date back to the 1920s, which can be determined by the way in which they were manufactured. Most of the bottles pictured are prescription-medicine bottles, with an exception of a beer bottle and a container that used to hold canned meat.

Parts of a doll’s face were found in Hubbard Park in what used to be someone’s backyard. The pieces found were an ear and a part of what looked to be a cheek. The doll is estimated to be from the pre-1900s.

Blue transfer printed ceramic from the pre-1900s were found, along with lots of other old pottery that is estimated to be more than 1,000 years old. A cow bone was also found among the remnants of the blue transfer printed ceramic.

Bones from a large bird, which was most likely a turkey, were also found in Hubbard Park. The bones are not a result of the turkey dying and decaying but rather a result of its being eaten by the residents who occupied the area during that time.

— by Alyssa Guzman

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