Drought Tempting Amateur Scavengers; Collecting Artifacts Illegal

By: Tom Skinner
By: Tom Skinner

North Carolina's drought is exposing plenty of artifacts that have long sat at the bottom of reservoirs and lakes.

But that doesn't mean collectors are allowed to pocket any shards of Native American pottery, spearheads or other archaeological finds.

Those who remove such materials from public lands can face stiff
fines or jail time under both federal and state laws.

Professional archaeologist Ramie Gougeon said he and his crew have found signs of unauthorized looting in the dry bed of Falls Lake north of Raleigh. He said the scavenging makes it tougher to interpret the history of activities in areas where the artifacts were found.

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