Native American Mounds in Alabama

Archaeologial Reconstruction Drawings by Carol Hicks

Bessemer, Alabama

Period: Mississippian, Woodland

Three mounds were once located by Valley Creek in Bessemer, Alabama. The site was also called the Tally Mounds and the Jonesboro mounds. Excavations done during the 1930s revealed 23 burials. It was thought that up to 1,000 people resided at the site.

Links to learn more about the Bessemer Mounds

Bottle Creek, Alabama

Period: Mississippian

Bottle Creek is considered one of the most important prehistoric Native American sites in Alabama. It is a large Mississippian complex in the Mobile-Tensaw Delta and has than more than 18 mounds. The site has been dated to approximately 1100-1400 CE. The isolation of the site has kept it relatively undisturbed. It is now a National Historic Landmark owned by the state of Alabama.

Links to learn more about the Bottle Creek

Buttahatchee, Alabama

Period: Mississippian

Locally, these three mounds are called the Chickasaw Mounds and were part of the "hunting grounds" of the Chickasaw Indian Domain. The area is also known as the Hamilton Mounds and the so-called "Military Ford." General Andrew Jackson once built a river crossing on the site as part of "Military Road," which was a short cut between New Orleans and Nashville.

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Collinsville, Alabama

Period: Mississippian

This single platform mound was located by Little Wills Creek in a valley between Lookout Mountain to the east and the smaller Big Ridge to the west. The Cherokee Indians were the first to inhabit this area. In 1924 Collinsville Baptist Church purchased property and built a the church on the site two years later.

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Florence Mounds

Period: Mississippian

The mound was called Wawmanona by the Chickasaw and Cherokee Indians and was believed to be a temple constructed around 500 CE. Florence has several smaller mounds located along the Tennessee River.

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Moundville, Alabama

Period: Mississippian

Overlooking the Black Warrior River, Moundville is one of the most impressive Mississippian era mound complexes in the U.S., surpassed only by Cahokia, IL. The archeological park has 26 well-preserved or restored pyramid-shaped mounds. Several intriguing designs are found in the Moundville artifacts. Among these are the feathered serpent and the eye-in-hand, which are symbols involved in the Path of Souls' death journey.

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Snake Effigy, Skeleton Mountain, AL

Period: Woodland

This unusual site resembles a serpentine figure lying across a ridge in the Skeleton Mountains. In 1990, the archaeologist visiting the site noted it was constructed of quartzite and limestone, creating a 197- foot "walkway." The site also has several stone mounds and a horseshoe-shaped wall.

Links to learn more about the Snake Effigy