HE GROUP’S next
big project will be at
the Riverplace develop-ment
located on Front
Street in downtown
Wilmington. The devel-opers,
East West Partners, are allow-ing
the organization to look into the
old rock spring that sits below the
The rock spring has its own little
folktale that Schleier knows well.
“There was this very popular natu-ral
spring in Wilmington,” he says.
“There were a few natural springs in
Wilmington, once upon a time. I don’t
know what’s happened to the other ones,
but this one apparently had the best tast-ing
waters, nice and cool and sweet.”
The tale dates back to the 19th
century and says that if a visitor drank
from the rock spring, they would
always return to Wilmington.
The spring was popular up until the
1920s when it started to get polluted,
and people eventually stopped using
it. The PAC has a chance to find some
significant artifacts on the site.
When the organization excavates on
private property, all artifacts recovered
belong to the landowner. If the owner
does not want them, they become
part of PAC’s collection, often used as
teaching aids. Schleier uses the arti-facts
on visits to area schools to help
students picture what Wilmington was
like back then.
“We take great measures to con-serve
the artifacts, keeping them in
good condition for future researchers.
Some may wind up in a museum one
day, but that’s probably in the distant
future,” Schleier says.
The best way to stay updated and find
volunteer opportunities with the Public
Archaeology Corps is through Facebook.
To be added to its e-mail list, visit the
Public Archaeology Corps website.
PHOTO BY ALLISON POTTER PHOTO COURTESY OF PAC