Quirky Des Moines #2 The Palace

He looked upstream and squinting slightly against the setting sun.  The water rushed by endlessly on its way to the sea past him and his home.  The soft brown clay beneath his feet slowly gave way to his weight as he pondered his next move.  He looked down at the spear point in his hand, and smiled.  He turned it over and over in his hand and felt its smoothness.  It had been his partners favorite, her lucky hunting spear tip.  In fact she had refused to even use it anymore, instead keeping it for good luck.  She was quite the hunter and trapper a quality with high desirability in an time where you can’t always count on your next meal.  Turtles were her favorite, she liked the challenge.  There was nothing quite like coming across a large snapping turtle that could take a finger off, and ending the conflict with a full belly.

He turned around and faced the round shelter where he lived.  A freshly dug hole near the shelter snapped away his happy memory and returned him to the painful present.  He moved slowly towards the hole, and knelt by the side of it.  Reaching in he carefully placed the spear tip under his partners cold body.  He looked at her face one more time, and noticed she looked at peace.  No more worry or fear, but also no more laughs or good times.  He realized that things would never be the same again.

This was an interpretation of an ancient event.  The location is a surprising one.  You might think that this could take place in a South American jungle, or the outback of Australia.  But this event happened in a place that you might have driven by many times.  In the winter of 2010 the city of Des Moines started to build a new wastewater plant.  When the digging started  ancient artifacts began to turn up.  Construction was stopped, archeologists moved in, and  over 6000 artifacts were found.  The name “The Palace” was given to the site due to the fact that the artifacts were in such good condition.  There appeared to have been a flood soon after the bodies had been buried and the area was covered in mud and protected from the elements.  Found with the artifacts were the skeletons of a woman and a child, the oldest human remains ever to be found in Iowa.  A spear tip was found under the woman’s body, appearing to be placed there on purpose.

If you would like to learn more about “The Palace” there is a Youtube video below about it.  Also, click here for a link to a Wikipedia entry.

If you would like to read more about Quirky Des Moines click here.





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