Port au Choix National Historic Site

For nearly four thousand years, the community, located on the Point Riche Peninsula, was a crossroads for native groups, attracted by the abundant marine resources.

Port au Choix is especially rich in traces of ancient aboriginal cultures. The National Historic Site preserves one of the most significant Maritime Archaic Indians sites in North America, along with Dorset and Groswater Eskimo communities that are some of the richest found to date, with superb examples of bone implements, weapons, and tools.

For many years, it was known that Dorset Eskimos had lived in the area. Archaeological excavations at Phillip's Garden, near the present-day community, offered important information about the Dorset settlement. In 1967, the discovery of a Maritime Archaic Indian burial ground attracted keen interest from the archaeological community. Human remains, tools, and weapons covered in red ochre were some of the artifacts identified. Burials from the site were estimated to be between 3,200 and 4,300 years old.

The climate, geography, and soil conditions have worked together to preserve pieces of ancient culture. Tools, weapons, clothing, household utensils and ornaments have survived for thousands of years, buried in the peat beds that line the coast. The land mass has been rising steadily since the last ice age, and sea level has been dropping. The site was once on a beach at the water's edge. Archaeologists continue to study the artifacts unearthed at Port au Choix and to investigate new sites along this rich coastline.

Season: June 1 - Oct 14

Location: Port au Choix

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