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Rockwell Mound

Historical Site Categories: Native American History and Native American Woodland

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What's The Story

Mound building involved excavating earth and transporting it a basket load at a time. It has been estimated that there are more than 1,700,000 basket loads of earth in the Rockwell mound. The mound is probably a cemetery, one of many burial mounds found in and nearby Havana.

Based on similarities in artifacts from mounds and villages along the Illinois River and in southwestern Ohio, archaeologists refer to this period of Native American history as Havana- Hopewell. At this time, Native Americans cultivated a variety of native plants in addition to relying on hunting and gathering, they cooked, served, and stored food in often highly decorated pottery containers, lived in oval to circular shaped wigwams, engaged in long distance trade for raw materials, such as obsidian from the Rocky Mountains and marine shells from the Gulf of Mexico and perhaps finished goods such as smoking pipes, and they constructed burial mounds near settlements along the river and at the base of the river valley bluffs. Most contemporary communities on the banks of the Illinois River were also occupied during the Havana-Hopewell period.

Visit the Gardening period exhibit at Dickson Mounds to learn more about the way of life during this period of Native American history.

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