Many have seen the Statue of Liberty as a beacon welcoming people to America. Did you know that it is also a site of archaeological significance? Archaeological digs have taken place on Liberty Island as well as Ellis Island to discover the islands’ past. In 1985 restoration workers discovered a shell midden on Liberty Island. From 1999 to 2000 National Park archaeologist William A. Griswold excavated the area. He discovered layers that dated between 783 AD-1156 AD and cataloged over 9000 items.