Native American Sites Throughout the Illinois River Valley
Native Americans have lived in the Illinois River Valley for at least 12,000 years. There are thousands of locations in this valley where there is evidence of their history. Many have been studied by archaeologists, and where documents are available, by historians. As a result, our understanding of Native American history continues to grow.
Native American history in this valley is unique, significant, and enriching, but generally little known by most Illinoisans. The Illinois River Road provides an exceptional opportunity to introduce contemporary explorers to learn how Native American culture has developed, flourished, faced daunting challenges, and has survived for thousands of years. It also reminds us how their way of life was profoundly changed by the expansion of European and then American settlement.