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Take That, Mound-Builders Of Yore

For reasons currently unknown, the People Who Were Here Before Us built mounds all over the United States. Building a big mound is more complicated than it may seem, and only in recent years have the People Who Are Here Now been able to pile up mounds of similar grandeur — and turn them into tourist attractions — such as Virginia’s 60-foot-tall pile of trash and Missouri’s 70-foot tall pile of nuclear waste.

There’s a new monstrous mound poking up on the horizon, in Oklahoma City, according to The Oklahoman. Named the Central Promontory Mound, it is the centerpiece of the city’s still-under-construction American Indian Cultural Center and Museum. Dedicated on August 26, the ginormous pile is made of 1.7 billion pounds of red earth hauled in 42,000 dump truck loads, and stands 90 feet high.

(By way of comparison, the much ballyhooed Great Serpent Mound in Ohio is only three feet high.)

As the article points out, in earlier days a mound of this magnitude might have taken centuries to build. This one took only two years, which shows what amazing progress we’ve made in the building of mounds.

The American Indian Cultural Center and Museum web site reports that its visitors center will be completed next month. A walking ramp will lead from below ground to “Promontory Peak” at the mound summit, where visitors can ponder the meaning of mounds — or simply watch the traffic on the nearby I-35/I-40 interchange.

Sections: Attraction News 2 Comments »

First Americans Museum

659 First Americans Blvd, Oklahoma City, OK
I-35/40 exit 127, then south on First Americans Blvd across the river. On the right.
M, W-F 10-5, Sa-Su 11-5. (Call to verify) Local health policies may affect hours and access.
Adults $15.
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2 Responses to “Take That, Mound-Builders Of Yore”

  1. stuthehistoryguy Says:
    August 28th, 2008 at 12:02 pm

    It does bear mentioning that the Great Serpent Mound, though only three feet high, is 1,330 feet long. And it’s head is aligned with the Summer Solstice to boot!

  2. Denny Gibson Says:
    August 28th, 2008 at 7:44 pm

    …and Monk’s Mound at Cahokia is 100 feet high and would have filled about 200,000 dump trucks but the builders, unable to line up even a single tipper, were forced to do the whole thing with baskets. I’ll be back with more impressive stats if I ever find the dump truck to wicker basket conversion factor.

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