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Shawnee Old Field Village Site

Shawnee Old Fields Village is an unexcavated archeological site in Allegany County, MD, at the confluence of the North and South branches of the Potomac River, strategically located along the Great North-South [Indian] Warriors Path. It is verifiably associated with the Underground Railroad through the occupation of the Shawnee Indians at King Opessa's Town and neighboring towns from about 1711 to 1727; they offered a refuge to freedom seekers. The National Register nomination states (citing Marye 1935: 131): "Around 1722, if not earlier, King Opessa's Town became a place of refuge for runaway slaves who succeeded in escaping from the plantation [sic] of Maryland and Virginia." The Governor of VA offered a bounty of a gun and two blankets for each runaway returned by a Shawnee. The Governor of MD met with Indian traders in Annapolis and sent Charles Anderson to negotiate the return of runaways who were living at various towns on the Potomac. The outcome is unknown, but the Governor tried to arrange another meeting in 1725 with the Shawnee on the Monocacy River (MD archives cited by Marye 1935:132). For the two governors, the resolution came when the Indians abandoned their towns on the upper Potomac River, probably to return to the Ohio River Valley.

Visitor Information: Currently not open to public.

Location: , Oldtown,

National Park Unit: No

Ownership: Kevin Brandt

Location Type: Site