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Feb. 13 - Big Muddy Speaker Series - St. Charles 2013

"The Prehistory of the Lower Missouri River"


presentation by Joe Harl, St. Louis Archeological Research Center

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

6. p.m. Meet at Big A's Restaurant
6:30 p.m. Presentation
At Big A's Restaurant
308 N Main St. -  St Charles, MO
(directions below)

St. Louis has been a cultural hub going back 12,000 years, since the last ice age. Being at the Confluence of the continent's two longest rivers, it has always been a site of pilgramage, trade and a diversity of cultures. 

Joe Harl and his collegues at the joeharl_dampiersiteSt. Louis Archeological Research Center have been involved in many recent archeological digs revealing this rich heritage here. He will be sharing his knowledge of the parade of cultures in this area, from the first hunting bands, through the widespread Woodland culture, the complex civilization of the Mississippians based out of Cahokia and the later groups moving through as Europeans moved into the area.

There is no one in the area that knows quite as much as Joe Harl about the latest discoveries of our heritage in the Confluence area.

Mr. Harl graduated from Washington University in St. Louis with an MA degree in Anthropology.  He has been performing archaeological investigations across Missouri and Illinois since 1978 with the University of Missouri-St. Louis, and has served on the board of directors for the Missouri Archaeological Society and the Missouri Association of Professional Archaeologists.

Top photo - a wood duck effigy, image courtesy of Bottom image from a story in the Suburban Journal


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Feb. 12 - Big Muddy Speaker Series - Rocheport 2013

"Reading Rings from the River -
a 14,000 year history of climate, carbon and change in tree rings"

presentation by Rich Guyette, dendrochronologist with Missouri Tree Ring Lab, University of Missouri, Columbia

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

7 p.m. presentation
lower floor of the Les Bourgeois Vineyards Bistro 
in Rocheport, MO (directions below)

Presentation is FREE and open to the public! Come early to purchase a great dinner upstairs at the Bistro!


Rich Guyette is all about tree rings. As a founding member of the Missouri Tree Ring Laboratory, he and his colleagues use their expertise in reading, archiving, analyzing and storing tree rings to provide baseline data useful in a wide variety of fields. From fire histories to drought mapping, from carbon sequestration modeling to climate histories, the information found in these tree rings is wide-ranging.oldoak

One of their long term projects has been locating and analyzing ancient "sub-fossilized" oak trees embedded in the alluvial sediment along Northern Missouri rivers including the Missouri, the Grand and other Grand tributaries. With the information they've collected, they have created a database of midwestern climate going back 14,000 years.

Next time you're climbing over piles of driftwood along the Missouri, keep in mind that some of these logs are ancient time capsules of climate and history.


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Helping out the Hermann Trash Mob

Saturday afternoon, Dec. 12, 2012
Hermann Beach, Hermann, MO

An amazing year on the river, for sure.

After unprecedented flooding last year, we've been witness to this deepening drought. Despite a bit of moisture in the parched midwest, our big rivers continue to drop. Revealing new beaches shaped by last year's high waters. And all the treasures...and trash....contained within them.Trash Mob: Hermann Beach Tire Clean-up 12-29-12

Just below Frene Creek in Hermann, MO., a new beach has emerged. And, of course, the locals have been exploring. We've heard stories of a bone flute and a spear point found there. Treasures like medicine bottles from the 1880's. And dozens and dozens of tires.

Gary Leabman, co-owner of Spirit Hill Bed & Breakfast and one of the leaders in Hermann In Bloom, teamed up with Jeff Noedel of to get some energy behind cleaning these tires up while we had the chance.

Mayor Pro Tem Ron "Pat" Van Booven brought a tractor, Jesse Geltz brought a ATV (he heard about the cleanup in the CNL and knew he'd be needed), Dave "The River Slave" Marner hopped on the planning process and in two days the whole thing came together. 

Tire Stonehenge

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Big Muddy Speaker Series - Kansas City

The Big Muddy Speaker Series is a monthly series of presentations on Missouri River ecology, history, biology and more by experts in their field. There are now three separate series, in Rocheport, Kansas City and St. Charles.

The Kansas City series is held at 7:00 p.m. on the second Wednesday of each month at Hickok's Grill in the Kansas City River Market District. Click here for the next presentation and directions»

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Big Muddy Speaker Series - Rocheport


The Big Muddy Speaker Series is a monthly series of presentations on Missouri River ecology, history, biology and more by experts in their field. There are now three separate series, in Rocheport, Kansas City and St. Charles!

The Rocheport series is held the second Tuesday of every month in the lower floor of the Les Bourgeois Bistro in Rocheport at 7 p.m.  

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