New York Chapter

Home to an abundance of stone structures, New York straddles the important waters of the Atlantic Ocean, the St. Lawrence River and the Great Lakes.  Its interior gives rise to the Hudson, Delaware and Susquehanna Rivers, three important south flowing rivers to the Atlantic Ocean.  Moreover the Susquehanna and the Alleghany Rivers in western NY provide connections to the Midwest, the Mississippi River and, through local creeks and the Genesee River, to Lake Erie and Lake Ontario.  These arteries of travel have facilitated exchanges between human groups in prehistoric and historic times.  Their relationship to nearby stonework is of considerable interest.

Additionally, in central New York the Mohawk River provides internal connections from the Black River at Lake Ontario through Moose Creek to the Hudson River and to Schoharie Creek in the Catskill Mountains.  And among other connections, in the far north the Raquette, St. Regis and Saranac Rivers connect directly to the St. Lawrence River.   

New York, once well populated with Algonquian and Iroquois peoples and interesting early animals, was a part of the old Mississippi-St. Lawrence Indian Trail and is home to the ancient river delta found in the Catskill Mountains. Mounds, cairns, walls, raised boulders, chambers, effigies, circles, manitou and standing stones are types of stone work found within the state.

We believe learning about these above ground stone structures contributes to understanding the past.  In New York we feel there are still unanswered questions about the corbelled, slab-roofed chambers that are worth our attention. 



New York Coordinator

Polly Midgley

16 Rockledge Avenue 4G1

Ossining NY 10562

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Museums in New York

Akwesasne Cultural Center (Mohawk Museum and Library), Route 37, RR1, Hogansburg NY 13655 

Fenimore House Museum: American Indian Wing (Thaw Collection and Iroquois exhibits), Cooperstown NY 13326 

Ganondagan State Historical Site, 1488 State Route 444, Victor NY 14564     (17th century Seneca site.) 

New York State Museum, 260 Madison Avenue, Albany NY 12230 

National Museum of the American Indian, US Customs House, One Bowling Green, New York NY 10014 

Rochester Museum and Science Center, 657 East Avenue, Rochester NY 14603 

The Iroquois Indian Museum, 324 Caverns Road, Howe’s Cave NY 12092 

Seneca Iroquois National Museum, 814 Broad Street, Salamanca NY 14779 

Six Nations Museum, 1462 County Route 60, Onchiota NY 12989 

Shako:wi Cultural Center, 5 Territory Road, Oneida NY 13421 

Shinnecock Nation Museum and Cultural Center, 45 Montauk Hwy, Southampton NY 11968 

Southold Indian Museum, Bayview Road, Southold NY 11971   (LI Chapter NYSAA) 

Susquehanna River Archaeological Center of Native Indian Studies (SRAC), 345 Broad Street, Waverly NY


New York Resources


Interesting Reading and References for NY State


Bradley, James W, Evolution of the Onondaga Iroquois: Accommodating Change, 1987. Syracuse University Press, Syracuse NY.


Brennan, Louis A.

A Short Evaluation of the Current State of Knowledge of New York Prehistory Stated in Terms of the Problems Raised by It, July 1963. NYSAA Bulletin, No. 28

American Dawn: A New Model of American Prehistory, 1970. MacMillan Co., London.

The Implications of Two Recent Radiocarbon Dates from Montrose Point on the Lower Hudson River, 1972. The Pennsylvania Archaeologist, Vol. 42, No.1-2.


Colden, Cadwallader, The History of the Five Indian Nations Part 1) 1742, Part 2) 1747. Reprinted 1958, 1964, Cornell University Press, Ithaca and London.


Mackey, Douglas, Mounds of New York: A Review of Adena and Hopewell Earthworks, 2007. The NYSAA Bulletin, Vol. 123.


O’Callaghan, Documentary History of the State of New York, 1849-1851, Volumes 1-4, 1851. Charles Van Benthuysen, Public Printer, Albany NY.


Parker, Arthur C., Parker on the Iroquois. 1968. Edited by Wm. A. Fenton, Syracuse Univ. Press, Syracuse NY.


Ritchie, William A.

New York Projectile Points. A Typology and Nomenclature, Revised 1971. New York State Museum, Bulletin 384.

The Archaeology of New York State, Revised edition, 1965.

The Archaic in New York, 1971. NYSAA Bulletin, No. 52.


Romain, William F.

Mysteries of the Hopewell: Astronomers, Geometers and Magicians of the Eastern Woodlands, 2000. University of Akron Press, Akron Ohio.

Journey to the Center of the World: Astronomy, Geometry, and Cosmology of the Fort Ancient Enclosure. In The Fort Ancient Earthwork: Prehistoric Lifeways of the Hopewell Culture in Southwestern Ohio, 2004. Edited by R.P. Connolly and B.T. Lepper. The Ohio Historical Society, Columbus Ohio.


Ruttenber, E.M., The History of Tribes of Hudson’s River Vol.1and 2., (- 1700, 1700-1850), 1872. Reprinted, Hope Farm Press and Bookshop, Saugerties NY.


Snow, Dean, Chas. T. Gehring, Wm. Starna, Editors, In Mohawk Country, 2008. Syracuse University Press, Syracuse NY.


Speck, Frank, The Mohican Indians, 1872. J. Munsell, Albany NY.


Squire, EG. Ancient Monuments of New York State, 1849. The Smithsonian Institution. Reprinted 2006, The Hayriver Press, Colfax WI.


Tuck, James A., Onondaga Iroquois Prehistory: A Study of Settlement Archaeology, 1971. Syracuse University Press, Syracuse NY.


Van Den Bogaert , Harmen Meyrdertsz, A Journey into Mohawk and Oneida Country 1634-1635. Translated and edited by Charles T. Gehring and Wm. A. Starna, 1991. Syracuse University Press, Syracuse NY.


Van Der Donck, Adriaen, Description of New Netherland, 1653. Translated by Diederik Goedhuys, Edited by Chas. T. Gehring and Wm. A. Starna, 2010. University of Nebraska Press, Lincoln NE.