Students in Dr. Jim Dougherty’s Sociology of Native Americans class are raising funds to pay for a state historical marker that will recognize the existence and the intersection of the Kittanning and Catawba Native American trails near the IUP HUB.
These two paths played a major part in overland travel for both Native Americans and early European settlers and explorers.
The Kittanning trail served as the major connector between today’s Altoona and Hollidaysburg area and one of the largest Delaware villages in Western Pennsylvania at Kittanning in the 1750s. It also served as a trailway for Colonel John Armstrong’s trek to destroy Kittanning in 1758. A plaque located in the Co-op Bookstore recognizes that Armstrong’s army chose to camp overnight near the HUB while passing through to confront the Delaware.
The Catawba trail was a major route for travel between western New York and the Carolinas in the South. A freshwater spring existed near the intersection of the trails, which the Europeans named Shaver’s Spring.
The installation of the historical marker will help inform the public of how the IUP campus and local area connect to the regional history of Native Americans, giving the university a unique distinction among the other PASSHE universities.
The first fund-raising event was an open-mic performance night at Spaghetti Bender’s restaurant in downtown Indiana on Saturday, March 19, 2011, from 9:00 p.m. to midnight. Performance artists from all genres were welcome to participate.
This was the first in a series of fund-raisers that will hopefully offset the more than $1,600 needed to pay for the historical marker.
For more information about the fund-raiser or the historical marker, contact Dougherty at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 724-357-2734.
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