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MOUNDSVILLE, W.Va. — Grave Creek Mound Archaeological Complex in Moundsville has planned a full schedule of programs throughout the month of April for visitors of all ages, including a celebration of spring at the museum’s Discovery Table with “Festive Folded Flowers,” a craft project in which visitors can create large colorful flowers from tissue paper and wire stems. The Discovery Table is open during regular museum hours. All programs are free and open to the public.

Eric Dye is again the featured artist of the month at the Complex. Dye is the owner and operator of Eric Dye Art Studio, located in Bethlehem, W.Va., where he works as a painter, sculptor, teacher, and artistic story teller and offers private and group lessons. A native West Virginian, he is a 1974 graduate of Concord University with a Bachelor of Arts in fine arts. He served as an artist-in-residence in Harpers Ferry, followed by an artist residency at Concord University, where he carved a nine-ton Bicentennial statue of the first settlers in Mercer County, which now resides on the court house lawn in Princeton. Since arriving in the Ohio Valley, Dye has participated in the Paint Historic Wheeling Plein Air paint out, contributed to several of the Cross Current Art Shows held each year by the Stifel Fine Arts Center in Wheeling, and was artist to the Wheeling Symphony Orchestra in 2017-18, designing a unique work for each of their performances. 

Underwater Archaeology is the topic of April’s second Saturday film and monthly lecture. On Saturday, April 13, three films will be showcased. Schedule is as follows:
1 p.m. “Teddy Tucker: Adventure is my Life”
A shipwreck diver since the late 1940s, Tucker and his colleagues virtually created the field of study know as underwater archaeology. 60 min.
2:15 p.m. “Blackbeard’s Lost Ship”
The most feared pirate of his day, Blackbeard trolled the shipping lanes of the Atlantic during the early 18th century. A group of marine archaeologists discover the remains of his ship, the Queen Anne’s Revenge. 60 min.
3:30 p.m. “Ghost Ships of the Great Lakes”
The discovery of a human skull in Lake Superior leads to the investigation of two shipwrecks and the story of a brave and stubborn woman who lived, and died, on the lake. 45 min.

On Thursday, April 25 at 7 p.m., Zackery Cruze, archaeologist and principal investigator in charge of archaeological projects at AllStar Ecology, will present “Nautical, Maritime, or Submerged; the Many Names of Underwater Archaeology.” What do Blackbeard, Civil War submarines, prehistoric villages and 16th Century Spanish explorers have in common? All are connected to archaeological sites currently being studied by underwater archaeologists. Cruze "dives" into the field of underwater archaeology in a program about the history which rests in our waters and the people who discover it.

Cruze is a registered professional archaeologist. He received his master’s degree in historical archaeology with a specialization in maritime historical archaeology and certification in historic preservation from the University of West Florida. He has six years of combined experience in archaeological laboratory, field and curation. He has worked in terrestrial and underwater archaeology as well as high-level Section 106 policy and practice. During his career he has had the opportunity to work on the complete excavation of a 16th century Spanish shipwreck and assisted in the underwater identification and relocation of torpedo doors from the World War II submarine the USS Drum. Cruze is actively involved in the community through various volunteer organizations, including the West Virginia Master Naturalists.  

For more information about activities and programs at Grave Creek Mound, contact Andrea Keller, cultural program coordinator, at (304) 843-4128 or [email protected] or visit www.facebook.com/gravecreekmound and www.twitter.com/gravecreekmound.

Operated by the West Virginia Department of Arts, Culture and History, Grave Creek Mound Archaeological Complex features one of the largest conical burial mounds built by the Adena people between 250 – 150 B.C. and ranks as one of the largest earthen mortuary mounds anywhere in the world. Exhibits and displays in the Delf Norona Museum interpret what is known about the lives of these prehistoric people and the construction of the mound. The complex also houses the West Virginia Archaeological Research and Collections Management Facility.

Admission to Grave Creek Mound Archaeological Complex is free. The Delf Norona Museum, located at 801 Jefferson Avenue, is open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday and closed Sunday and Monday. Outdoor access closes at 4:30 p.m.

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