The Center for Archaeological Investigations (CAI) is preparing National Register of Historic Places (NRHP) nomination forms for five rock art sites located on the Shawnee National Forest in southern Illinois as part of an agreement between the USDA Forest Service and the CAI. The six sites for which forms are being prepared include the ca-A.D. 1700-1800 Buffalo Rock site (11Js49); three Mississippian period (A.D. 1000-1500) sites in the form of the Korando (11J334), Whetstone (11J17), and Bay Creek (11Pp52) sites; and the Trestle Hollow sites (11J364), which is of unknown age.
There currently are only four state-owned and one federally-owned rock art site (Millstone Bluff, 11Pp8) listed on the NRHP so completion of the nominations forms for these sites will double the number of Illinois rock art sites listed or eligible for the NRHP. The purpose of having sites listed on the National Register is that it alerts planners or agencies involved in federally funded, licensed, or permitted projects of the existence of nationally important sites in their areas that may be affected by a proposed project. This allows federal officials to protect such sites by, for example, in the case of the Forest Service, not constructing a trail too close to an important site and inadvertently causing damage to it through increased visitation and possible vandalism.