Archaeological dig at Colonial Michilimackinac turns up cuff links from 1781

Recent digs have resulted in more discoveries

This set of joined sleeve buttons was found August 10, in the 1781 demolition rubble layer. (MSHP)

An ongoing archaeological dig at Colonial Michilimackinac, an 18th century fort and fur trading village in Mackinaw City, has reported some very cool finds.

This week, Mackinac State Historic Parks reported the discovery of two sleeve buttons, modern cuff links, that date back to 1781. It was found in rubble from a demolition that happened that year. The green glass paste “stones” are set in brass, the park said. That’s the photo at the top of the article.

In July, MSHP offered an update on the first half of their archaeological season. Among the artifacts discovered, a one-ounce brass weight from a balance-type scale. It is stamped with “GR” under a crown for King George.

Two possible posts from the east wall of the cellar have been exposed. A folded iron barrel band was found adjacent to one of the posts.

Several interesting artifacts have come from the central cellar as well, the park reported. These have included part of a porcelain teacup, a lead seal, a plain brass button, and a brass band with iron rivets, possibly from a storage container. Read more about the findings here.

One-ounce brass weight (MSHP)
Folded barrel band in front of remnant of a cellar wall post (MSHP)

Colonial Michilimackinac

From MSHP: In 1715, French soldiers constructed Fort Michilimackinac. This fortified community became the great fur trade center of the Northwest until its relocation to nearby Mackinac Island in 1781. It was here where fur traders and Indians rendezvoused, French and British officers organized war parties and explorers began their journeys into the vast western unknown. (Read more here)


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Ken Haddad is the digital content and audience manager for WDIV / ClickOnDetroit.com. He also authors the Morning Report Newsletter and various other newsletters. He's been with WDIV since 2013. He enjoys suffering through Lions games on Sundays in the fall.