A Summer School Field Trip to Cahokia Mounds

Since we’re learning about the history of Illinois in summer school this year, and since we hadn’t visited in longer than I care to admit, we spent yesterday morning at Cahokia Mounds, the place in Illinois with basically the oldest known history.


It’s an amazing place to visit, because when you see it in person, you really get the magnitude of a 100-foot high, man-made, earthen mound. When you just look a pictures, you don’t really get the scale of it.


We walked around outside, visiting Monks Mound (the tallest of the over 100 mounds), Woodhenge (a prehistoric solar calendar), a “borrow pit,” and the reproduction stockade:

We also spent time in the interpretive center, where we watched a short movie about the history of the settlement, and then walked around the various exhibits, which are really well done.



Because we’re not on the East Coast, where all of the colonial and Revolutionary War memorials are, it can be easy to think that there’s nothing really old here. A quick trip to Cahokia Mounds, however, you will remind you that the opposite is true!

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