Near Leland in Sauk County, Wisconsin — The American Midwest (Great Lakes)
Natural Bridge State Park
The Bridge / The Rockshelter
This Natural Bridge of sandstone, 35 feet high, was carved by the uneven dissolving of mineral deposits holding the sand grains together. The result after many years of erosion by water, frost action, wind, and gravity is the largest natural arch in the state. It remains today because of its location in the Driftless Area of southwestern Wisconsin, a region that was not glaciated in the last Ice Age.
Beneath the Bridge is a natural rockshelter, which was excavated in 1957 by archeologists. They discovered charred wood believed to be from the fire pits of a people here possibly as long ago as 12,000 years, making this one of the oldest dated sites for human occupancy in northeastern North America. The people of thet far away time, called Paleo-Indians, may have hunted such animals as Mastodons and/or Wooly Mammoths in this area. The rockshelter at first was a seasonal and temporary refuge, later a permanent one. The Native Americans encountered here by the white settlers could be regarded as latter-day representatives of this ancient culture.
Location. 43° 20.876′ N, 89° 55.896′ W. Marker is near Leland, Wisconsin, in Sauk County. Marker can be reached from County Highway C one mile east Touch for map. Marker is in Natural Bridge State Park (fee area). A hike, on mostly unmarked and unimproved trails, is necessary to reach the marker. Marker is at or near this postal address: E7792 County Highway C, Reedsburg WI 53958, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 12 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Mid–Continent Railway Historical Society (approx. 8.3 miles away); Vodak Memorial Park (approx. 8.4 miles away); The Baraboo Range (approx. 8.8 miles away); Van Hise Rock (approx. 9.8 miles away); a different marker also named Van Hise Rock (approx. 9.8 miles away); Ringling Brothers Circus (approx. 10.8 miles away); Culver's (approx. 11½ miles away); Warner Memorial Road (approx. 11½ miles away).
Also see . . .
1. Natural Bridge State Park. (Submitted on June 23, 2009.)
2. Natural Bridge State Park (Wisconsin). Wikipedia entry. (Submitted on June 23, 2009.)
Categories. • Native Americans • Natural Features •
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on June 23, 2009, by Keith L of Wisconsin Rapids, Wisconsin. This page has been viewed 856 times since then and 5 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on June 23, 2009, by Keith L of Wisconsin Rapids, Wisconsin. • Craig Swain was the editor who published this page.