Hickory – Newcomers of Catawba Valley will learn about far earlier newcomers to the area when archaeologist Melissa Timo gives a presentation at their May 9 general meeting. She will talk about the Spanish conquistadors’ exploration of present-day Burke County, which occurred decades before the British founded settlements at Roanoke and Jamestown.

Timo will speak about the 1567 outpost outside Morganton call Fort San Juan, at the Native American Village of Joara. An going archaeological dig has uncovered traces of the fort and Indian settlement. She will explore who these Spanish people were, what they were doing, where they went and what they left behind. Attendees at the presentation will discover how they can help uncover this fascinating story.

Ms. Timo is Staff Archaeologist with the Exploring Joara Foundation in Morganton and holds a Master of Arts in Historical and Public Archaeology from the University of Western Florida. Her work over the last 17 years has taken her all over the eastern half of the U.S.

The Newcomers meeting starts at 10:30am Wednesday, May 9, at Hickory Regional Airport, 3101 9th Ave. Dr. NW, Hickory. The public is invited to attend.

Newcomers of Catawba Valley is primarily a social organization that enables new and long-time residents of the region to meet, make friends and participate in a variety of activities, including support of area charities and service programs. The club is made up of men and women and does not limit how long a member may belong. General meetings are usually held at the Hickory Regional Airport at 10:30 a.m. on the second Wednesday of every month. For more information, visit www.newcomersofcv.com.

Image: Spanish Conquistador