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Digging Into Archeology At The Deserted Village

If archaeology is your thing, then find your way to the Deserted Village of Feltville.

As part of Union County’s Four Centuries in a Weekend Celebration, the Archeological Society of New Jersey will hold a special meeting at Masker’s Barn on Saturday, Oct. 17.   The barn, which is part of the Deserted Village, is in the Watchung Reservation.

On Sunday, Oct. 18, visitors are welcome to meet and talk to one of New Jersey’s preeminent archaeologists, Dr. Richard Veit of Monmouth University. He will be at the site of David Felt’s house, which was excavated by Montclair State University. Veit is also known for his books chronicling his search for Revolutionary War period cemeteries.

The Saturday presentations at the barn, which are open to the public, will include:

“Revisiting the Turkey Swamp Site.” Sean McHugh and Evan Mydlowski, from Monmouth University, will discuss their findings from 1:15 – 1:45 p.m.

“An Enigmatic Prehistoric Archaic Manifestation on the NJ Coastal Plain,” by Jack Cresson, follows at 1:45pm and runs until 2:15 p.m.

“The Snyder Paleoindian Complex, Carpentersville, New Jersey,” is the third and final presentation and will be delivered by Jennifer C. Rankin, from Temple University and R. Michael Stewart, also from the University and with the NJ Historic Preservation Office. That presentation will run from 2:45p.m. to 3:15p.m.

There will also be a “dig” for children to learn the basics of archaeology, which runs Saturday and Sunday. 

“Archaeology is just part of the fun,” said Union County Freeholder Sergio Granados. “With all the activities planned at the Deserted Village, not to mention the opportunity to spend some time in one of the state’s most beautiful reservations, it is a must visit.”

Other activities at the Deserted Village will include Hayrides, Tours, Quill and ink pen writing for children, apple cider pressing, old-fashioned children’s games, pumpkin painting and a guided tour by ghost of David Felt.

To find the Deserted Village, set the GPS to Cataract Hollow Road, Berkeley Heights, NJ. For more information, go to or