Devil's Hole


(up-dated 22/May./2019)


  DEVILS HOLE, 2017   

DEVIL'S HOLE 2019--- MAY 30, 31, AND JUNE 1ST, AND 2ND, 2019

To get to Pleasant Ridge Park, take I-64 (I-64 runs E/W,  thru St. Louis, Mo.) to the Fairview Heights exit (#12, hwy 159). Take hwy. 159 North about .4 mi. to left turn lane for East O'Fallon Drive. (stop light) Turn left, (West) and drive 1.3 mi. to RR tracks. After crossing tracks, Pleasant Ridge Rd. is on your left (South) about 100 feet. Take Pleasant Ridge 5 or 6 blocks to the top of the hill. The Pleasant Ridge Park entrance is the first road to the right after you reach the top of the hill.  Just drive to where all the campers and trucks are parked.

Because of higher charges for the insurance, Larry will have to request a $5.00 donation for each knapper (families considered as one knapper) this year. Larry has tried to hold off any price increases and is sorry to have to ask for a donation, but that's the way things go, these days. Thanks for understanding; Larry

Devil's Hole Knap-in was named after the adjacent Devil's Hole coal mine that operated from 1933 to 1940. It's 2 main shafts, followed the Herrin coal seam and produced over 20,000 tons of coal. It used the room and pillar type of construction. Larry's great grandfather ,William Kinsella, was a carpenter and built the trestle, that had a siding, leading to Devil's Hole and 2 other mines, located about 1/2 mile to the East. William emigrated from County Cork, Ireland, in 1850, lived in Caseyville for a while, then, found the site he would name Pleasant Ridge Farm. He lived with his family in a tent for 4 years, then built the log cabin, sometime around 1860. The reconstructed cabin still stands at Pleasant Ridge Park. Larry lived in that cabin until he was 16 and moved to an adjacent new house his dad, Cyril, built in 1961. After Cyril's death in 1962, Larry's family stayed in the new house until 1972 when the city of Fairview Heights bought the farm for the new Pleasant Ridge Park.

Devil's Hole Specifications   (Page 40)

Larry still lives in a house he built in '76. His property  is surrounded by the park , on three sides. Go to:    KINSELLA CABIN

                    Warning! Do not plan on arriving on Sunday because most knappers will be on their way home and the rest will help clean up. For most purposes, the knap-in will be gone by 11AM.

 We will  have our attendance prize drawing, with about 70 prizes, on Saturday, at 2 PM. This is one of our most popular events, so plan on donating a prize and entering the drawing. On Friday and Saturday evenings, Larry Kinsella will present slide shows at the large pavilion. One of the programs usually has some of Pete Bostrom's fabulous photos so, bring a lawn chair if you don't like the park benches. After the slide shows, hang around for some good music. Musicians, bring your instruments!!

No ground fires. Pleasant Ridge is an archaeological site, so tarps must be used if you're not knapping in the pavilions. We have modern toilets but NO showers. Many motels and restaurants are about 2 miles away. We may have NO (Larry provides brats and hot dogs for a nominal fee so you can cook them yourself on the charcoal grill at the site) food vendors, so plan accordingly. We have the park grounds from Wednesday afternoon to Sunday afternoon. All participants must arrive no earlier than noon, Wednesday, and depart no later than 5PM Sunday. Camping is FREE.

So, come to the Devil's Hole Knap-in, enjoy the Knapper Friendly atmosphere, see old friends, and make new ones.

Pictures of past Devil's Hole Knap-ins



I'll see you all next year!! Larry


Devil's Hole 2015   3 pics

Devil's Hole 2014   25 pics

Devil's Hole '13  28 pics

Devil's Hole '12 32 pics

Devil's Hole '11 65 pics

Devil's Hole '10 93 pics

Devil's Hole '09 44 pics

Devil's Hole '08 10 pics

Devils Hole '07  19 pics

Devil's Hole '06  44 pics

Devil's Hole '05  88pics

Devil's Hole '04  60 pics

Devil's Hole '03  4 pics

Devil's Hole '02  39 pics

Devil's Hole '01   71 pics

Devil's Hole '00  104 pics

Devil's Hole '99 89 pics

Devil's Hole '98  12pics

Devil's Hole '96    1 pic

Devil's Hole '94  105 pics

Devil's Hole  '84    2 pics

Devil's Hole '82      5 pics

Fairview Heights Motels  (I-64 at Il. 159, exit 12)


Four Points by Sheraton             Super 8

319 Fountains Pkwy. (618) 622-9500                       45 Ludwig Dr. (618) 398-8338


Drury Inn

12 Ludwig Dr. (618) 398-8530

Caseyville Motels   (I-64 at Il. 157 exit 9)

Best Inns of America                                               Days Inn

2423 Old Country Inn Dr. (618) 397-3300              8950 Tucker Dr. (618) 397-4200


Quality Inn                                                               Motel 6

2180 Patricia Dr. 9618) 398-6745                          2431 Old Country Inn Rd. (618) 397-8867




Lee Parker's "T" shirt design was a big hit

(Photo LK)  Devil's Hole knappers with their Atlatl and Mastodon Meatcutters shirts.

(Photo Sharon Mondino) We had some good music too.


 (Photo Mike Nance)

The first Devil's Hole Knap-in was, formerly, known as the Midwest Flintknapper's Convention. There were 7 original attendees. They are, left to right, Larry Kinsella, Richard Warren (deceased), Larry Nelson, Charlie Laster (deceased), Dave Klostermeier, "Arrowhead" Fred Bollinger, and Eric Rodemacher. Photo taken in 1980, at Cahokia Mounds.

(Photo by Mike Nance)  Here's the 4 remaining knappers from the original Devil's Hole (formerly Midwest Flintknapper's Convention) Knap-in. (From left) Larry Kinsella, Larry Nelson, Arrowhead Fred Bollinger, and Dave Klostermeier. It's hard to believe what 25 years of knapping can do to a person.

To check out Larry's 2009 knapping class schedule, go to:  LARRY"S PROGRAMS

   (Photo by Sara Pfannkuche) 

This is an ancient antler knife handle  found in northern Illinois by MARS (Midwest Archaeological Research Service) during their 2003 excavations. If you have seen other handles like this, please contact Larry to share some information about this rare artifact.

  (Photos LK) These are poor photos of an Oneota antler scraper handle that is curated at the Dickson Mounds Museum. It is made to accept a typical Oneota chert scraper blade and it has striations, especially on the reverse side, to facilitate hafting.

                                        (Photo by Bob Vanisegham, click to enlarge) 

This is Percy with his armadillo hat from the 2002 Devil's Hole Knap-in

(Photo LK) 

 This photo shows the megalith (on the right) dedicated to knapper, George Stewart at the 2004 Rabbit Stick rendezvous. Larry pecked in the Clovis with a chunk of Crescent Quarry chert, one of George's favorite cherts.             

(Photo LK)

Here's Larry's version of the Paleo-exacto knife. It's somewhat along the lines of the ones that Watts, Jones, Halladay, and Dahl have been making for years now. Larry has used cane here to eliminate the need to drill holes. It's reinforced with sinew and hide glue.