Covering more than 2,000 acres, Cahokia is the most sophisticated prehistoric native civilization north of Mexico. Best known for large, man-made earthen structures, the city of Cahokia was inhabited from about A.D. 700 to 1400. Agricultural fields and a number of smaller villages surrounded and supplied the city.
1,000 Years Ago, Corn Made This Society Big. Then, A Changing Climate Destroyed It. Cahokia Mounds State Historic Site in Collinsville, Ill. A thriving American Indian city that rose to prominence after A.D. 900 owing to successful maize farming, it may have collapsed because of changing climate.
Cahokia Mounds, some 13 km north-east of St Louis, Missouri, is the largest pre-Columbian settlement north of Mexico. It was occupied primarily during the Mississippian period (800–1400), when it covered nearly 1,600 ha and included some 120 mounds.
The name ” Cahokia ” is from an aboriginal people who lived in the area during the 17th century. Cultural finds from the city include evidence of a popular game called “Chunkey” and a caffeine loaded drink.
The Cahokia Native Americans of the Illini did not coalesce as a tribe and live in the Illinois area until nearly the time of French contact 300 years ago. Father Pinet founded a mission in late 1696 to convert the Cahokian and Tamaroa Native Americans to Christianity.
The Cahokia were an Algonquian -speaking Native American tribe and member of the Illinois Confederation; their territory was in what is now the Midwest of the United States in North America.
As a corn-based economy grew in the fertile Mississippi Valley, providing a reliable food source all year, populations rose and villages grew. About 1000 A.D., Cahokia underwent a population explosion. Along with corn, Cahokians cultivated goosefoot, amaranth, canary grass and other starchy seeds.
The answer there is because not all societies build pyramids, nor do all societies build in stone. Large-scale stone architecture in what’s now the US and Canada is largely limited to the Southwest.
Since the 19th century, the prevailing scholarly consensus has been that the mounds were constructed by indigenous peoples of the Americas. Sixteenth-century Spanish explorers met natives living in a number of later Mississippian cities in the Southeast, described their cultures, and left artifacts.
Mounds were typically flat-topped earthen pyramids used as platforms for religious buildings, residences of leaders and priests, and locations for public rituals. In some societies, honored individuals were also buried in mounds.
By the 1400s, Cahokia had been abandoned due to floods, droughts, resource scarcity and other drivers of depopulation. But contrary to romanticized notions of Cahokia’s lost civilization, the exodus was short-lived, according to a new UC Berkeley study.
Cahokia was the largest city built by this Native American civilization. Because the ancient people who built Cahokia didn’t have a writing system, little is known of their culture.
The largest mound at the Cahokia site, the largest man-made earthen mound in the North American continent, is Monks Mound ( Mound 38). It received its name from the group of Trappist Monks who lived on one of the nearby mounds. The Monks never lived on the biggest mound but gardened its first terrace and nearby areas.
There are three outstanding characteristics of Mississippian material culture: tempered clay pottery, square houses, and pyramidal mounds. With regard to pottery, Mississippian potters tempered clay with pulverized shells in order to increase the strength of pots.
Mound types Cairn. Chambered cairn. Effigy mound. Kofun (Japanese mounds ) Platform mound. Subglacial mound. Tell (also includes multi-lingual synonyms for mounds in the Near East) Tumulus (barrow) Bank barrow. Bell barrow. Bowl barrow. Chambered long barrow. Kurgan. Long barrow. Oval barrow.