Getting to the bottom of Bay View

A group of students from MPS’ Bay View and Bradley Tech High Schools is working in concert with Discovery World to excavate a lost block of homes in Bay View this weekend.

The students – who are interns in Discovery World’s Art & Archaeology of Me program – will work to uncover homes demolished to make way for South Shore Park, located between Superior Street and the lake in Bay View.

As part of the program at Discovery World, high school students learn archaeological methods, research skills, interviewing techniques, media production, design and visual art skills.

For this project, the students studied fire insurance maps from 1894 and 1910 and compared them to modern satellite images. Property deed searches and site exploration using Ground Penetrating Radar also helped the students find remnants of the 19th century homes.

On Saturday, they’ll take to the park for an archaeological dig at 10 a.m. Then, next week, they’ll reveal their findings at South Shore Park on Wednesday, May 29 at 3:30 p.m.

“This is city as school,” said Heidi Heistad, lead developer of the Art & Archaeology of Me program, In a statement. “It’s an amazing opportunity for teens to explore neighborhood history. What’s even more powerful is that they turn around and teach that history to other teens.”

“We’re really excited to get digging,” said Vanessa Flores, a senior at Bay View High School. “We’ve found a part of the city that most people have completely forgotten. We’re uncovering stories of people who lived and worked right in our school’s backyard. The city has a lot to teach us, and when we understand our past, we can take ownership of our future.”

This sounds like an amazing project and I’ll update you on what the students find next week.

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