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Native American Life on Mason Neck State Park: the Archaeological Evidence

  • 15 Jun 2019
  • 10:00 AM - 12:00 PM
  • Mason Neck State Park Visitor Center

Registration is closed

Dr. Mike Johnson is unable to present his program on the Native Americans of Mason Neck this Saturday.  Mason Neck State Park plans to schedule his talk at a later time.  The Park is instead offering the following program at the same time as the original program: 


Locating Capt. John Smith’s

Tauxenent in Belmont Bay

Mason Neck State Park Visitor Center

10:00 AM Saturday, June 15, 2019

In June and July of 1608, Captain John Smith and a crew of 14 sailed a 2-ton barge up the Potomac River, exploring and mapping the Occoquan river, Belmont Bay and the area now known as Mason Neck.  He described Tauxenent, the principal village of the Taux, or Dogue, Indians and showed its general location on a map. 

However, the exact location of Tauxenent has been the subject of investigation for many years. 

Join Richard Eilers, an avocational archaeologist with a long history of involvement in archaeological excavations on the Mason Neck area, as he discusses the basis for a multi-year survey of Belmont Bay, with a focus on Doeg Island.  Mr. Eilers and Dr. Michael Johnson, the former Fairfax County senior archaeologist, are collaborating on reconstructing the evolutionary history of Belmont Bay using sonar surveys and Virginia Marine Resources Commission-permitted limited underwater test pit excavations. 

Mr. Eilers completed the Archaeological Society of Virginia’s (ASV’s) archaeological technician certification program and has conducted thousands of hours of field and laboratory work with Fairfax County Archaeology, Gunston Hall Archaeology, Mount Vernon Archaeology and the Virginia Department of Historic Resources.  He is a past president of the ASV’s Northern Virginia Chapter and current treasurer of the ASV’s Maritime History Chapter.

The event is free and open to the public. 

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