Rock of Ages: The Sanilac Petroglyphs


Cranbrook Sightings Blog

CRANBROOK SIGHTING: CRANBROOK INSTITUTE OF SCIENCE Drawings of the Sanilac Petroglyphs, Sanilac County, Michigan Darrel J. Richards Circa 1940 Graphite on paperSanilac Petroglyph drawings by Darrel J. Richards. Photograph by R. H. Hensleigh.In 1881, the "Great Thumb Fire" ravaged the woods of what is now Sanilac Petroglyph Historic State Park and its surrounding areas in eastern Michigan, causing 282 fatalities and burning upwards of one million acres of land. (Sidenote: The region received the inaugural relief efforts from Clara Barton's American Red Cross, which was founded just months earlier). In the aftermath, a farmer surveying the damage to his land noticed large sections of carvings on a limestone outcrop that had previously been obscured by a thick brush which was now burned away.Sanilac Petroglyph drawings, detail. Photograph by R. H. Hensleigh.What he discovered were the Sanilac Petroglyphs, rock carvings almost certainly made by a member of the Anishinaabeg people between 300 and 1,000 years ...

Tagged: Cranbrook Institute of Science, Sanilac Petroglyphs

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