Village of Orland Park to Host “Archaeology in Your Backyard”

Village of Orland Park to Host “Archaeology in Your Backyard”
Posted on 05/02/2014

Travel back in time with Dr. Rochelle Lurie as she explores the early days of Orland Park.

The Village of Orland Park will host a free seminar, “Archaeology In Your Backyard,” inviting area residents to learn more about the early days of the area.

The program will be held Thursday, May 22 from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. at the Orland Park Civic Center, 14750 South Ravinia Avenue.

“This is a neat seminar where people can learn about who was here before the founding fathers that we already know about,” said Orland Park Mayor Dan McLaughlin.

Lurie, with Midwest Archaeological Research Services, Inc., will discuss the landscape and the inhabitants of the area from as long ago as the Early Archaic Period, 8000 to 6000 B.C.

“When you mention the word ‘archaeology’, most people think of Egypt or Mexico or perhaps the southwestern United States,” Lurie said. “More than a thousand sites have been recorded in Cook County --- more than 100 of them in Orland Park,” she said.

“Many of the sites in Orland Park have been covered by development but there are at least 30 that remain that give us the opportunity to discover this ‘archaeology in our own back yard’,” Lurie said.

Lurie has conducted research in the Chicagoland area for more than 30 years. She received a doctorate degree in anthropology from Northwestern University and completed two years of graduate study in American history at Roosevelt University.

“This is a great seminar for anyone interested in the history of the area,” McLaughlin said, adding, “We’re looking forward to having an audience full of seniors, individuals, families, scouts, archaeology students and more. Everyone is welcome.”

Reservations are encouraged by calling 708/403-6399 or by sending an email to

The artifacts above were recently presented to the Village of Orland Park by Lester Marszalek, president of the Greater Oak Lawn Earth Science Club and an independent archaeology researcher. Marszalek works with the Illinois Archaeology Survey of Cook County and is a member of the South Suburban Archaeological Society.