Sunday, February 10, 2008

1 comment:

Glenn Adams said...

HISTORY of the East Missippian Era

Massive earthen mounds of varying size and function dominated the landscape during the last phase of great Moundbuilder Period (referred to as the Mississippian Period). One of the largest cities of this period was Cahokia, located in present-day Collinsville, Illinois about 20 miles east of St. Louis. In the 13th century Cahokia had a population of about 30,000 inhabitants and built flat top mounds for buildings and other mounds for burials and boundary markers. The largest Cahokian mound, Monks Mound, 32 meters tall, containing 623,000 cubic meters of earth has two terraces and a massive base measuring 739,224 square feet, making it one quarter larger than the base of the Great Pyramid of Giza. On top of Monks Mound was the residence of the leading chief known as the Great Sun whose duty it was to keep the forces of nature in balance and thereby ensure continued prosperity for his people. Cahokia's population was greater than any contemporary European city of the day, and it wasn't until the late 18th century that a North American City, Philadelphia, finally had population that eclipsed that of 13th Century Cahokia.

At a time when Europe was plunged into the Dark Ages and crusaders fought holy wars to gain Jerusalem for the Church, this Native American culture thrived in what is now the Midwest and Southeast United States. The Mississippian Culture commenced around AD 900 and lasted until just after the coming of Hernando de Soto and his marauding Spanish fortune hunters in the mid-16th century. For more than half a millennium, the Mississippian people successfully cultivated vast agricultural settlements based on corn, squash and beans. They also developed a complex and highly organized culture based on a ritualistic relationship between the people and the land. The most notable of these Moundbuilder centers were Spiro Mounds in eastern Oklahoma, Moundville in Alabama, Etowah Mounds in Georgia, and the largest, most elaborate center at Cahokia.

Mississippian Indians had perfected the bow and arrow which was a powerful weapon, as the Spanish intruders of the 16th century quickly found out. Native American warriors launched arrows that penetrated the Europeans' chain-mail armor and impaled their horses. They could shoot with such speed that they were able to get off five or six arrows in the time it took a Spaniard to reload his crossbow or musket. Mississippian military strength, on water and on land, played a major role in preventing the Spaniards from conquering the mound-building region. After many attempts, the would-be conquistadors abandoned the effort and contented themselves with a Florida shrunk to the size of the peninsula that now bears its name Florida.

The Appalacian Mountains consist of numerous mounds in NW Georgia, that IMO, have nevered been discovered. Many of which are obvious to the novice historian and oblivious to some of the most seasoned. These are very spiritual areas and some represent major population centers...