Wednesday, April 6, 2011

SRAC Unveils New Ancient Amulet Exhibit

(WAVERLY, NY) Cryptic drawings and artwork from an ancient artist’s hand cover the dog-tag sized slate amulet that is now on display in the Susquehanna River Archaeological Center (SRAC) at 345 Broad Street Waverly, NY. The amulet was found below a site locals refer to as “Spanish Hill” in 1908. It has been in the SRAC/Cowles collection for many years, but has until now never been on public display. SRAC’s executive director, Deb Twigg explains, “The mere size of the amulet combined with the fact that it is one of a kind and irreplaceable has always made us keep it locked in a fire proof safe. First because it is too small to be enjoyed in a case with the other Spanish Hill artifacts and two because it needs to be secured at all times.”

Recently, with the expertise and volunteer work by SRAC board member Don Hunt and Jerry and Mike Sanders of Sanders Designs, a case was finally created to allow it to be enjoyed by all visitors to the SRAC Museum. The exhibit both magnifies and lights the amulet on a rotating suspension device while keeping it secure. Twigg added, “As most people know, we are a new organization with a small bank account, and investing in a case like the one they built for us was not possible for us. But with the expertise of the people who were willing to volunteer to make it with things mostly that they could find in our attic, I’d say that our new exhibit rivals any large museum’s exhibit out there for an item such as this.” Twigg also noted that SRAC full camera security system and was given a grant in 2008 by the Mildred Faulkner Truman Foundation to match the smoke, fire and alarm system used in the New York State Museum in Albany, NY.

The exhibit also has a description of the amulet written by nationally renowned author, Edward J. Lenik. Lenik published a narrative about the amulet and other SRAC artifacts in his book “Making Pictures in Stone: American Indian Rock Art of the Northeast” which came out in 2008. He is also scheduled to present “AMERICAN INDIAN ROCK ART ON THE SUSQUEHANNA RIVER” at SRAC on Saturday, April 30th from 2-3pm.

The SRAC Exhibit Hall is open from 1-5 Tuesdays through Fridays and Saturdays from 11-4pm. To learn more, visit , email, or call (607)727-3111.

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