Transcript: Meadowcroft [VIDEO]

Dave Scofield, Director, Meadowcroft Rockshelter and Historic Village: Meadowcroft is an outdoor museum. We’re part of the Heinz History Center museum system, and we’re located in Washington County, just outside the town of Avella, about 35 miles from downtown Pittsburgh. We tell the story here of 16,000 years of people using this piece of real estate.

Meadowcroft Rockshelter is the oldest site of human use in North America. It’s a remarkable archaeological site that has provided evidence of people camping here 16,000 years ago. The beauty of Meadowcroft is that it appeals to all ages. Young kids have a great time here exploring history. We like to have hands-on activities whereever possible for kids to actually participate in historical activities. But it’s really a family experience for, you know, intergenerational families.

In our 19th century village, you can visit the blacksmith shop and see a blacksmith at work at the forge, making items out of iron and steel. You can visit our one-room schoolhouse and participate in a mock school lesson from the 19th century. You can stroll across our covered bridge and take a visit in the log house – the Miller Log House – where we talk about rural life in a small village in the 19th century.

Our Monongahela Indian Village is a recreation of a 16th-century Indian village that would have been in this region, that’s centered on agricultural lifestyle.

Our 18th century area deals with that period of time when commercial trading would have gone on between Native Americans and the European traders.

Meadowcroft is, really, a unique place. Where else are you going to stand in the same place that people stood 16,000 years ago and see evidence of campfires that were built thousands of years ago and learn about the lifestyle of not only prehistoric people, but the historic people that made use of this property throughout the last 16,000 years?