BUFFALO, N.Y. - Today traffic rolls by without a second glance. Niagara Street is dotted with industry, factories and small business but this bustling stretch has a long history, some proud, some dark.
The section of Niagara Street north of the bend, near Rich Products, was once the center of the Village of Black Rock. In fact, it was right in the vicinity of he original outcropping of black limestone from which the village derived his name. One of the area's prominent early settlers, Col. William Bird also built his mansion there. It was in the yard of that mansion, where a gruesome discovery was made. it was a discovery that has led to nearly two centuries of debate and mystery.
According to noted author and paranormal researcher Mason Winfield, When Col. Bird was leveling out a strange mound in the yard, he discovered a large kettle buried within. The kettle was filled with human skulls and surrounded by a circle of up to 15 male skeletons. The skeletons were placed in a circle, heads pointing to the kettle, each one with an ax or tomahawk head laid beneath it.
Some say it was the burial place of the victims of an ambush or a pre-War of 1812 skirmish. Winfield, however, believes it had more of a spiritual meaning. He feels it was a native American memorial and a sacred burial ground.
What we do know is that it is one of the countless mysteries that make up our history.