Archaeologists want to preserve rock formation - WAFF-TV: News, Weather and Sports for Huntsville, AL

Archaeologists want to preserve rock formation

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Archaeologists spent weeks trying to clean up graffiti and preserve art decorated by Indian tribes. Archaeologists spent weeks trying to clean up graffiti and preserve art decorated by Indian tribes.
GUNTERSVILLE, AL (WAFF) -

Archaeologists are trying to preserve a beautiful rock formation seen by many on the Tennessee River west of the Guntersville Dam. Archaeologists spent weeks trying to clean up graffiti and preserve art decorated by Indian tribes.

Painted Bluff is a beautiful site along Alabama's Tennessee river. Much of the streaking is done by nature. Unfortunately, crews spent several months analyzing and cleaning up graffiti that was painted onto the rocks.

However, taking a closer look, they uncovered natural art and hope to study it. TVA officials said there were more than 80 drawings in red, orange, and yellow colors that were put on the rocks more than 600 years ago.

Archaeologists plan to work with tribes to learn more about the symbols painted on the rock so many years ago.

"This actual situation in the southeast is really unique," said Rebecca Tolene, Vice President of TVA Natural Resources. "You do find these painted rocks elsewhere in the country, but just because of our humidity and our location, it is very rare to find them here, so we have something special and we are going to try to capture it and let others help us figure out what it means."

Crews wrapped up the cleaning and took extra steps to watch for those who want to put graffiti on the rocks. They urge people not to, and it is illegal.

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