Hike at Native American Ceremonial Stonework at Hartman Park, Lyme Land Trust, Lyme, Connecticut
Thursday March 4th @ 9:30 am - 11:30 am
Join us for our free-guided trail walks on Thursdays. Walks are between 1 ½ to 3 hours and are open to all ages with our target group being agile seniors. Please keep in mind that these are wooded trails with stumps, roots and rocks so be sure to wear hiking boots or good walking shoes. You may even want to consider snow shoes. Make sure you bring water and maybe a snack. Be aware that our hikes leave promptly so be on time!
- RSVP is required and space is limited. If you are interested in attending, please RSVP to the designated hike leader. See contact information below.
- Please follow social distancing of 6′
- Everyone must bring a face mask in case it is needed
***Orange Requirements: All hikers are required to wear 200 square inches of solid daylight fluorescent orange in State Management areas from the second Saturday in September to the last day of February and the third Saturday in April to the last day in May, annually.
THIS HIKE: Native American Ceremonial Stonework at Hartman Park, Lyme Land Trust, Lyme, Connecticut
The terrain is quite hilly, and while we will be on trails for the majority of the hike, most of the stonework we will see is slightly off the trail, so walking sticks are highly recommended. As we will always be near a trail, anyone wishing to head home can easily do so at any point without a guide, as the trails are well marked. You can either photograph the trail sign map at the beginning of the hike or print out a trail map from the Lyme Land Trust site before the hike. Expected hike time is 4 hours, so bring either a quick lunch or snacks and water. Cancellation Policy: Heavy rain or snow cancels walk, hopefully to be rescheduled at a later date. I will be there for light rain or snow if anyone wants to hike. Questions about cancellation can be texted to me at 860-908-3870 after 6:00 AM on the day of the hike.
Hike Description: Native Americans occupied this portion of New England for 12,000 years before the arrival of European settlers. As an expression of their spiritual lives, they built over two dozen different types of stone structures from Nova Scotia to Georgia, and countless examples of their work still remain deep in the forests of New England. On this hike I will take you on a tour of some of the Ceremonial sites that remain in Hartman Park and explain what is known about the stonework you will see. As the description below from the Land Trust website explains, you will also see many Colonial and post-Colonial examples of stonework on the hike. Hartman Park provides a clear example of the intermingling of both culture’s stonework. It is only recently that the Land Trust has begun recognizing Native work on their land, and the new signs on the property are beginning to point out these structures. Lyme Land Trust Description of Hartman: For thousands of years prior to the arrival of European settlers, the Corner Trails area was a seasonal hunting ground for the Nehantic people. After the establishment of the Saybrook colony in 1635, the English set aside this land as a Native American hunting ground, while reserving the right to harvest the valuable timber. During colonial times, subsistence farmers set up homesteads in the area. Freed African and Native American slaves were welcomed into the area along with European settlers. In 1800, the census record states that there was a multi-racial community of fifteen households in the area. Indications are that the farmers were able to eke out a living by cooperation with their neighbors – sharing tools, barns, and labor. The destructive agricultural practices of the time damaged the already marginal farmland and most of the inhabitants moved to more fertile lands by the 1850s. Although the land has been undeveloped for more than 100 years and the cleared pastures have been replaced by mature forests, there is still evidence of this once active agricultural community. The elaborate stone walls and stone foundations that lace the area are a beautiful legacy left for us by inhabitants from long ago.
Meet at Main Parking Lot – Head north from Beaver Brook Road onto Gungy Road. Go approximately 1.25 miles. Parking lot is on right – it is a semi-circular loop off and back onto Gungy Road.
Leader: Mark Starr, (860) 908-3870 and email: Jstarr@snet.net