Long Island's Hidden Past: Arrowheads and Native American artifacts
Arrowheads are the lasting remnants and reminders of a culture and people that loved and honored their Long Island home.
Lake Ronkonkoma Historical Society and Museum holds a vast collection of arrowheads and other Native American artifacts - found over the years in the woods and fields that surround Lake Ronkonkoma.
Native Americans considered Lake Ronkonkoma hallowed and holly. Four Native American families, or tribes, lived along the shores of the lake. They considered the lake sacred for its life-giving properties of fresh water and food, they never considered owning it - it was just shared.
"The lake was a beautiful, clear body of water. It was a place of refuge," says Joyce Sorrese, curator at the Lake Ronkonkoma Historica Society and Museum.
Much of the collection was found by Basford Hawkins. His family was among the first settlers in Lake Ronkonkoma.
"Over the years, he collected over 2,000 arrowheads. He, and others around the area here found evidence of homesteading, mortars and pestles, grinders. They range from about 8,000 years old to a few hundred years old," says Sorrese.