Indian bowls, bottles taken from locked room at SAU

Sunday, August 6th 2006, 2:11 pm
By: News On 6

MAGNOLIA, Ark. (AP) _ An invaluable collection of intact bowls and bottles crafted centuries ago by Caddo Indians has been stolen from a storeroom at Southern Arkansas University.

The artifacts were awaiting return to members of the tribe in Oklahoma

David Jeane, a research archaeologist at the university, says whoever took the artifacts, which bear intricate designs characteristic of the Caddo, will probably be able to dispose of them quickly on the antiquities black market.

SAU officials announced yesterday their discovery the day before that the artifacts were missing.

Jeane says SAU archaeologists had not been in the locked room holding the artifacts all summer. The door showed no sign of forced entry.

After more than two decades of studying the artifacts, the SAU archaeologists were preparing to turn the items over to descendants of the Caddo Indians who live in Binger, Oklahoma.