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Shelter Building and Workers
An Excavation Unit
The Vore Site was part of Plains Indian history and culture.
How to Find Us
Full Description: One of the most important archaeological sites of the Late-Prehistoric Plains Indians.|
Discovered during the construction of Highway I-90 in the early 1970's, the Vore site is a natural sinkhole that was used as a bison trap from about 1500 to 1800 A.D.
Buffalo were driven over the edge of the sink hole as a method for the Native American tribes to procure the large quantities of meat and hides needed to survive the harsh prairie winters.
Bone and Stone Artifacts
The Vore Buffalo Jump features enormous quantities of bone and stone artifacts that are perfectly preserved in discrete, precisely datable layers and held in place within a natural bowl.
Within the site are the butchered remnants of as many as 20,000 bison as well as thousands of chipped stone arrow points, knives, and other tools. The materials are contained within 22 cultural levels that extend downward to a depth of nearly 20 feet.
Much Yet to Learn..and a Great Place to Learn it.
Only about 5% of the Vore Buffalo Jump has been excavated so there is potential for decades of scientific research in several different disciplines. Because it is literally a stone’s throw from one of America’s busiest highways, the Vore Buffalo Jump is also the most accessible of the major Plains Indian sites to the traveling public. The Vore Site thus provides a perfect physical context for illuminating Plains Indian culture and history and presenting it to visitors.
How to Find Us
The Vore Buffalo Jump is immediately adjacent to Interstate Highway 90 in northeastern Wyoming.
The Site is approximately half way between Sundance, Wyoming and Spearfish, South Dakota in the Redwater Creek Valley between the Bear Lodge Mountains on the north and west and the Black Hills proper on the south and west.
Visitors coming from the east should take I-90 Exit 205, one mile west of the Wyoming-South Dakota border. Proceed west on the access road (formerly US Hwy 14) through the community of Beulah for about 4 miles. The Vore Site parking area is on the left (south) just past a small hill.
Visitors approaching from the west on I-90 may access the Vore Buffalo Jump by taking I-90 Exit 199. Turn left (north) and pass under the interstate, then turn right (east) on the access road (formerly US Hwy 14). The Vore Site parking area is about 3 miles east on the right (south) of the access road.
The Vore Buffalo Jump is open to the public only during the summer months, however, please contact us to schedule group tours in the winter. Contact email@example.com for more information.
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Listed by: Vore Jump
Info: The Vore family homesteaded in the Redwater Valley in the late-1880's. The extended family farmed part of the land and grazed livestock on the remainder.
In the early 1970's, the route for Interstate Highway 90 was surveyed across the southern portion of the Vore ranch. The original intended route of the east bound lane would have passed over the north rim of a large sinkhole requiring that the hole be filled and compacted with enormous quantities of earth.
Sinkholes are by their very nature, unstable and the highway engineers were rightly concerned that the bottom might subside further and collapse the highway into the sinkhole.
To determine the stability of the site, the Wyoming Department of Transportation created a crude road into the sinkhole and used a small rig to drill several holes in the bottom. Almost immediately the drill brought up quantities of buffalo bone. A decision was made to move the interstate south of the sinkhole and to notify archaeologists from the University of Wyoming (US) that a cultural site of unknown size and importance had been discovered.
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