Two nationally significant historic sites at Metepenagiag

Posted on September 17, 2007
Filed Under Metepenagiag | Leave a Comment

madeleine-augustine.JPGpamward1.jpg                                                                                                                                                     Madeline Augustine, President and Board Chair; Pam Ward, Executive Director, Metepenagiag Heritage Park, Inc.

 

            In 1972, with a gravel pit rapidly encroaching, Joe Mike Augustine uncovered artifacts from what turned out to be a 2,500-year-old Mi’kmak burial mound. The mound is in the First Nations community of Metepenagiag, known in English as Red Bank.

            Following contact and lengthy discussion with the NB Provincial Archaeology Department Chief Donald Ward and council reached a working agreement for the exploration and protection of the site.

            In 1975 The National Historic Sites and Monuments Board of Canada (NHSMB) declared the Augustine Mound to be a National Historic Site with a strong recommendation that the site be interpreted for all Canadians.

            The Augustine Mound is nationally significant because it and exceptional and enduring expression of Mi’kmaq spirituality, exhibiting burial rituals and artifacts directly connected to Adena traditions in eastern North America 2,500 years ago, 600 B.C.

            In 1977, work began on another site discovered by Joe Mike Augustine, the village of Oxbow, a deeply stratified site situated at the head of tide. Excavations were carried out until 1984 by which time a record of continuous habitation for at least 3,000 years up to the present day had been established. Excavations cannot go deeper because they would go into the water table and flood.

            In 1980, the Oxbow village site was also declared a National Historic Site. It is nationally significant because it is a unique cultural record of a flourishing Mi’kmaq community which has endured for at least 3000 years and shows a direct relationship between the everyday life of the community and its spiritual centre at the Augustine Mound.

            On August 23, 2007, Metepenagiag Heritage Park, a community owned and operated Class A, ultra-modern, visitor attraction costing over $7,000,000, opened to the public. It interprets the sites and displays artifacts, crafts, art, and information describing 3000 years of the community’s continuing history and culture.

            “We have been greeting European visitors for several centuries now,” says the official welcome to the Park. “You are invited to come share our music, listen to our stories, handed down the generations by our Mi’kmaq elders.

            “View astonishing finds from our two National Historic Sites – the Augustine Mound and the village of Oxbow. See replicas and artifacts, art and crafts, and the culture and the livelihood of our people for the past 30 centuries. Walk our trails, watch a video depicting life in ancient times.

            “We’re open all year.”

Park hours are:

May 15 to October 15 – 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.

October 16 to May 14 – 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.

Entry fees are:

Adult (17 – 64)  $8.00       Senior (65 years and older)  $6.00

Youth (6 – 16)   $6.00       Family/Group                     $18.00

A family or group is up to seven people with a maximum of two adults arriving in a single vehicle or visiting together.

School groups (per student)  $3.00.  

 You can get our current information package by:

Calling: (506) 836-6118

Emailing:           info@metepenagiagpark.com

Mail:                 PO Box 302, Red Bank, NB  E9E 2P2

Visiting:          2156 Micmac Road, Red Bank, NB

Directions and maps are also available on our web site at:

http://www.metepenagiagpark.com/ .

Click below to enlarge

Map 1map2.jpg

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