Although not all Mississippian peoples practiced all of the following activities, they were distinct from their ancestors in the adoption of some or all of these traits. Encyclopedia of Arkansas Link
The Midcontinental Journal of Archaeology, first published in 1976, is the official publication of the Midwest Archaeological Conference, Inc. 560-573. It is considered ancestral to the Natchez and Taensa Peoples.. By the 1500s, most of the area was abandoned, with only small pockets of habitation in the surrounding villages. Two major tribes were the Adena and Hopewell Indians. Now, new evidence suggests a dramatic change in climate might have led to the culture's collapse in the 1300s. By the time more documentary accounts were being written, the Mississippian way of life had changed irrevocably. The environmental consequences of population concentration and overfarming played some role in these changes. The type of structures constructed ran the gamut: temples, houses, and burial buildings. The best evidence for determining cultural occupations is a combination of cultural artifacts and settlement patterns. Others are tall, wide hills. By 1050 CE, these ingredients coalesced, perhaps around a religious leader of a lunar cult, producing an explosive flashpointmetaphorically described by one archaeologist as a Big Bangof culture change. Major sites such asSpiroand theBattle Mound Siteare in theArkansas RiverandRed RiverValleys, the largest and most fertile of the waterways in the Caddoan region, where maize agriculture would have been the most productive. This area covers the central Mississippi River Valley, the lower Ohio River Valley, and most of the Mid-South area, including western and central Kentucky, western Tennessee, and northern Alabama and Mississippi. Shell-tempered pottery and other artifacts (such as a chunkey stone) suggest the people living there may have been affiliated with the Mississippian center at the Bottle Creek site in Alabama. On the plaza, the crowd's buzzing energy turned to a collective roar when spectators bet on bouts of chunkey.
The historic and modern day American Indian nations believed to have descended from the overarching Mississippian Culture include: the Alabama, Apalachee, Caddo, Cherokee, Chickasaw, Choctaw, Muscogee Creek, Guale, Hitchiti, Houma, Kansa, Missouria, Mobilian, Natchez, Osage, Quapaw, Seminole, Tunica-Biloxi, Yamasee, and Yuchi. This plastered cane matting is called wattle and daub. The Mississippian culture was a Native American civilization that flourished in what is now the Midwestern, Eastern, and Southeastern United States from approximately 800 CE to 1600 CE, varying regionally. In Louisiana, the influence of Mississippian culture was evident by 1200 CE. The inhabitants constructed 19 mound monuments, with 11 being identified as substructure platform mounds, in addition to a large plaza situated near the nucleus of the settlement. Mississippian culture, the last major prehistoric cultural development in North America, lasting from about 700 ce to the time of the arrival of the first European explorers. Mississippian culture. The modern languages in the Caddoan family include Caddo andPawnee, now spoken mainly by elderly people.  The Etowah Mounds is an ancient tribal centre of the South Appalachian Mississippian culture, that built a large settlement comprising of three large pyramid style platform mounds, in addition to 3 lessor mounds on the shore of the Etowah River in the present-day Bartow County of Georgia. The people who lived in this now largely forgotten city were part . These incl Mississippian culture sites are not common in Louisiana, but a few of the sites that might have been occupied by Mississippians are reviewed. The Mississippian culture had begun to decline by the time European explorers first penetrated the Southeast and described the customs of the people living there. The second largest pre-Columbian structure in the USA and is the type site for the Emerald Phase (1350 to 1500 CE) of the Natchez Bluffs region. By the time more documentary accounts were being written, the Mississippian way of life had changed irrevocably. In this instance, the movement of people appears to be on a seasonal basis, and largely directed towards one activitysalt-making. The adoption of the paraphernalia of the Southeastern Ceremonial Complex (SECC), also called the Southern Cult. Schambach, Frank F.
Archeologists use the term "Mississippian" to refer to cultural developments in the Southeast between A.D. 900 and the 1539-1543 Spanish expedition led by Hernando de Soto. Mississippian peoples were almost certainly ancestral to the majority of the American Indian nations living in this region in the historic era. Hernando de Soto led an expedition into the area in the early 1540s, heencountered several native groupsnow thought to have been Caddoan. Such mounds were usually square, rectangular, or occasionally circular. He visited many villages, in some cases staying for a month or longer. Archaeologists disagree about whether the individuals depicted represent the Mississippian elite, culture heroes, mythic heroes, or gods. Mortuary ceremonies at these mounds celebrated connections between the living community and ancestor spirits. Mark A. Rees, Rebecca Saunders, Courtesy of Department of Sociology and Anthropology Archaeology Laboratory, University of Mississippi, Davies Collection 3359. Cahokia was a large city complex, founded around AD 1050 in what is now western Illinois. Most tellingly, no burials have been found that have the abundance and kinds of high-status artifacts found at major Mississippian sites in the Southeast. Moundville: Ranked with Cahokia as one of the two most important sites at the core of the Mississippian culture. Chiefdoms are unstable forms of society, given the inherent competition between communities and their leaders. Other Native American groups, having migrated many hundreds of miles and lost their elders to diseases, did not know their ancestors had built the mounds dotting the landscape. Among the more popular misconceptions were those holding that the first residents of the continent had been members of the Ten Lost Tribes of Israel or refugees from the lost island of Atlantis, that . Emerald Mound: APlaquemine Mississippianperiod archaeological site located on theNatchez Trace ParkwaynearStanton, Mississippi.  The type site for the culture is the Medora site in Louisiana; while other examples include the Anna, Emerald, Holly Bluff, and Winterville sites in Mississippi. Baton Rouge: Louisiana State University Press, 1984. Although a minor amount of shell was present in the pottery made by earlier cultures in the southeastern United States, shell was used widely, and in many areas exclusively, in the Mississippi period after circa 1000 CE. Please refer to the appropriate style manual or other sources if you have any questions. The SECC was frequently tied in to ritual game-playing. By AD 1450, the Winterville Mound site was abandoned, with possible migration of the population to areas around the lower Yazoo River basin. "The people who lived [in Spiro] came to control what we call the Mississippian culture. Good examples of this culture are theMedora Site(thetype sitefor the culture and period) inWest Baton Rouge Parish, Louisiana, and theAnna,Emerald Mound,WintervilleandHolly Bluffsites located in Mississippi. Although not all Mississippian peoples practiced all of the following activities, they were distinct from their ancestors in adoption of some or all of the following traits: Mississippian Cultures. Maize-based agriculture. Like Transylvania, Sims had a Plaquemine culture component that exhibited some Mississippian influence, but also may have had a later Mississippian culture occupation dating to circa 15001700 CE.  It had a deep history in the area stretching back through the earlier Coles Creek (700-1200 CE) and Troyville cultures (400-700 CE)  to the Marksville culture (100 BCE to 400 CE). Washington, Smithsonian Institution. The current definition of Mississippian includes mound-and-plaza ceremonialism, hierarchical sociopolitical organization, and intensive corn (Zea mays) agriculture (Steponaitis 1986). Our editors will review what youve submitted and determine whether to revise the article. Even the standard of use of shell temper in pottery production was already common in the Central Mississippi Valley by AD 700 (Morse and Morse 1990). The Transylvania mound site is in East Carroll Parish. Different groups adopted the new practices to a greater or lesser degree. Different orientations to the land and its resources did not prevent these groups from maintaining economic and ceremonial ties with their agricultural neighbors in adjacent regions. They grew much of their food in small gardens using simple tools like stone axes, digging . The result is a clay that allows the potter to make a thinner, harder vessel, and to create more elaborate vessel forms. These archaeologists suggest that, rather than an intrusion of Mississippian people, there was a more complex interplay between Plaquemine and Mississippian cultures in this area. Caddo village scene, by Ed Martin. A centralization of control of combined political and religious power in the hands of few or one. However, overlying this component was a later assemblage composed almost completely of shell-tempered pottery. Pauketat, Timothy R. (2003). Corrections? For terms and use, please refer to our Terms and Conditions This distinct cultural name is derived from its development in the central part of the Mississippi River valley. The beginnings of a settlement hierarchy, in which one major center (with mounds) has clear influence or control over a number of lesser communities, which may or may not possess a smaller number of mounds. (They killed soldiers stationed at five other forts as well; only one man of 120 survived.) Its called Mississippian because it began in the middle Mississippi River valley, between St. Louis and Vicksburg. Sites in this area often contain large ceremonial platform mounds, residential complexes and are often encircled by earthen ditches and ramparts or palisades.. (The designs on some of the shell-tempered pottery match designs commonly found in those areas.) A Plaquemine/Mississippian site approx. The term Middle Mississippian is also used to describe the core of the classic Mississippian culture area. The various cultures collectively termed Mound Builders were inhabitants of North America who, during a 5,000-year period, constructed various styles of earthen mounds for religious, ceremonial, burial, and elite residential purposes. Political structures collapsed in many places. Courtesy of Arkansas State Parks. The Encyclopedia of Arkansas History & Culture. Political structures collapsed in many places.By the time more documentary accounts were being written, the Mississippian way of life had changed irrevocably. And is Mississippi still living in the past? Only the Natchez Bluffs region and regions to the south withstood the Mississippian cultural influences. Encyclopedia of Arkansas Link
New York: Viking, 2009. These ideas were manifested in beautiful objects of stone, copper, clay, shell, and other materials. Neuman, Robert W. An Introduction to Louisiana Archaeology. This was true, for example, in the lower Mississippi Valley region (extending into Southeastern Arkansas), where a civilization called the Plaquemine culture thrived mainly by hunting, gathering, and fishing. The Adena were not one large tribe, but likely a group of interconnected communities living mostly in Ohio and Indiana. However, except for Sims, little is known about these sites. During times of warfare or strife, the regional population took shelter in the fortified towns. The list consists of 27 members. Southeastern Archaeology 25(1):29-47. Enter your email address to receive notifications of new posts by email. Smaller satellite villages surrounded these towns. Thus the complexes might be called theocratic village-states. Such mounds were usually square, rectangular, or occasionally circular. The adoption and use of riverine (or more rarely marine) shells as tempering agents inceramics. The Mississippian way of life began to develop in the Mississippi River Valley (for which it is named). (1927). They engraved shell pendants with animal and human figures, and carved ceremonial objects out of flint. The Adena tribe frequented the Ohio Valley area, among other states, while the Hopewell tribe came after the Adena tribe, replacing them and growing into a larger group. The vacuum the Hopewell left was filled with and continued by the Mississippian Culture. Washington, Smithsonian Institution. These maintained Mississippian cultural practices into the 18th century..  South Appalachian Mississippian area sites are distributed across a contiguous area including Alabama, Georgia, northern Florida, South Carolina, central and western North Carolina, and Tennessee. Refiguring the Archaeology of Greater Cahokia. Originally published by Wikipedia, 12.15.2004, under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported license. Palimpsest 8(6):185229. The cane matting was then covered with plaster made from mud. 534-544. In the best-studied Plaquemine culture village in south Louisiana, the Discovery site, corn was present but was not a staple even as late as circa 1500 CE. Kincaid Site: A major Mississippian mound center in southernIllinoisacross theOhio RiverfromPaducah, Kentucky. Mississippian peoples were almost certainly ancestral to the majority of the American Indian nations living in this region in the historic era.  It was composed of a series of urban settlements and satellite villages linked together by loose trading networks. De Soto's path through the Mississippian cultures of what is now the southeast United States spread disease among the local inhabitants, diminished native food supplies, and led to a reduction in native populations. The Mississippian American Indian culture rose to power after A.D. 900 by farming corn. Structures (domestic houses, temples,burial buildings, or other) were usually constructed atop such mounds. Some groups adopted European horses and changed tonomadism. This was true, for example, in the lower Mississippi Valley region (extending into Southeastern Arkansas), where a civilization called the Plaquemine culture thrived mainly by hunting, gathering, and fishing. High-status artifacts, including stone statuary and elite pottery associated with Cahokia, have been found far outside of the Middle Mississippian area. One of the most spectacular examples of this practice is the so called Great Mortuary at the Spiro site in extreme eastern Oklahoma, just a few miles west of Fort Smith, Arkansas. Coles Creek sites appear to be larger, more numerous, and more complex than those of their predecessors. Keyes, Charles R.Prehistoric Man in Iowa. The Mississippian Culture was another mound . 14, Southeast, edited by Raymond D. Fogelson, pp. Fayetteville, Arkansas Archeological Survey Research Series 43. Wide distribution of Braden style artifacts across the Southeast by A.D. 1200 shows how the style spread outward from the Cahokia area in the centuries immediately following its origin. One symbol, the cross-in-circle, illustrates the world, suspended from the sky by cords located at the cardinal directions. However, there is no concrete evidence of direct contacts between the Mississippian Southeast and Mesoamerica. 36-43. prime 400 years before the onset of Mississippian culture. The Mississippian way of life began to develop in the Mississippi River Valley (for which it is named). The late prehistoric cultures of the southeastern United States dating from ca. Papers are analytic, often incorporate cutting edge field and laboratory methods, applied in clear theoretical, problem oriented contexts. Occupation at the site appears to have ended by AD 14001450, possibly due to the exhaustion of local resources such as timber and game, a period in which archaeologists call the vacant quarter. Some encounters were violent, while others were relatively peaceful. Is Mississippi racist? There is evidence for maize in ritual contextsfor instance at the terminal Coles Creek period Lake Providence Mounds siteby 1150 CE. The chronicles of de Soto are among the first documents written about Mississippian peoples and are an invaluable source of information on their cultural practices. Mississippian culture, which originated at the great urban center of Cahokia (near St. Louis), involved new social hierarchies and political structures that are reflected not only in rituals and symbols but also in pots and food items. Maize did not become an important part of the Southeastern diet until around 1000 CE, when it was incorporated into preexisting gardens of domesticated squash and seed plants such as little barley and goosefoot (lambsquarters). The Caddoan people were speakers of one of the many Caddoan languages. De Soto's later encounters left about half of the Spaniards and perhaps many hundreds of Native Americans dead. This is the belief system of the Mississippians as we know it. 2004 Prehistory of the Western Interior after 500 B.C. Sixteenth-century Spanish artifacts have been recovered from the site, marking the first European colonization in the interior of what became the United States.. Cahokia: The largest and most complex Mississippian site and the largest Pre-Columbian settlement north of Mexico, Cahokia is considered to have been the most influential of the Mississippian culture centers. The Mississippian culture was a mound-building Native American culture that flourished in what is now the Midwestern, Eastern, and Southeastern United States from approximately 800 CE to 1500 CE, varying regionally. 2 (2008): 202221. People also gathered at the larger towns for community rituals and ceremonies. In the western Ozark Highlands, for example, Marvin Kay and George Sabo studied mound centers constructed by local Mississippian communities. After A.D. 1200, regional styles derived from the Braden style show up, especially around major centers at the Spiro site in Oklahoma, the Moundville site in Alabama, the Etowah site in Georgia, and the Lake Jackson site in Florida. Ceramic bowl with spider motif (left), reproduction embossed copper plate with Birdman motif (center), and ceramic rabbit effigy jar (right). The site was occupied by the Macon Plateau culture from around AD 950 during the Early Mississippian-culture phase, although archaeological evidence suggests that there has been near continuous occupation by various peoples going back 17,000 years from the Paleo-Indian period. That salt production took place is apparent by the literal pavement of broken bowls and other briquetage (by-products of salt-making) in Salt Mine Valley. These items, especially the pottery, were also copied by local artists. Founded in 1918, the Press publishes more than 40 journals representing 18 societies, along with more than 100 new books annually. The Nashville area was a major population center during this period. The spread of cultivation into North America seems to have proceeded along two separate courses, one from northern Mexico into the southwest and the other from an unknown Middle American source into the Mississippi Valley. De Sotos later encounters left about half of the Spaniards and perhaps many hundreds of Native Americans dead. , The Caddoan Mississippian area, a regional variant of the Mississippian culture, covered a large territory, including what is now eastern Oklahoma, western Arkansas, northeastern Texas, and northwestern Louisiana. Discussions of these cultures can be found in their respective essays. Curated/Reviewed by Matthew A. McIntoshPublic HistorianBrewminate. Pauketat, Timothy R. (1998). Mound-building Native American culture in Midwestern, Eastern, and Southeastern United States, Learn how and when to remove this template message, list of sites and peoples visited by the Hernando de Soto Expedition, List of burial mounds in the United States, "Mississippian Period Archaeological Sites", "Southeastern Prehistory:Mississippian and Late Prehistoric Period", "Revisiting Platform Mounds and Townhouses in the Cherokee Heartland: A Collaborative Approach", "Tejas-Caddo Fundamentals-Caddoan Languages and Peoples", "Tejas-Caddo Fundamentals-Mississippian World", The Mississippian and Late Prehistoric Period, Indian Mounds of Mississippi, a National Park Service, Animation: Towns and Temples of the Mississippian Culture-5 Sites, Hopewell Culture National Historical Park, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Mississippian_culture&oldid=1141967145, History of indigenous peoples of North America, Indigenous peoples of the Southeastern Woodlands, 8th-century establishments in North America, 16th-century disestablishments in North America, Articles lacking in-text citations from October 2019, Articles with unsourced statements from January 2020, Articles with unsourced statements from November 2009, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License 3.0, Widespread trade networks extending as far west as the. daniel kendall obituary
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