The Hopewell Culture National Historical Park Summer/Fall Events Schedule


The Hopewell Culture National Historical Park Summer/Fall Events Schedule


Summer Saturday Hikes: 2009 Tour Schedule

On select Saturdays throughout the summer, park rangers will lead tours of three other sites the park protects besides Mound City Group. All tours begin at 9am and last two to three hours. Directions, places to meet, and tour descriptions are listed below. Come see the other earthworks of Hopewell Culture National Historical Park.

Seip Earthworks — June 6, July 4 and August 1

Length: 2 miles Difficulty Level: Easy, Flat

Seip Earthworks is a classic example of the Hopewell Culture’s fascination with geometry and skillful construction of their earthworks. Within the remnants of these ancient earthen walls also stands majestic Pricer mound, the largest restored Hopewell burial mound in existence.

Meet at Seip Mound main parking lot on U.S. Rt. 50 by Paint Valley High School, 2.5 mi. east of Bainbridge, 5 miles west of Bourneville.

Spruce Hill– June 13, July 11 and August 8

Length: 2¼ miles Difficulty Level: Moderate, Uphill

Mysterious Spruce Hill is the world’s largest Hopewell hilltop enclosure and one of only three such rare hilltops surrounded by a mound of stone. Though little remains of the stone walls, hikers will get a sense of scale for the prehistoric project when standing in the middle of the mesa. Spruce Hill is not normally open to the public without prearrangements, so this is an uncommon opportunity to explore this flat-topped finger of stone that thrusts into the scenic Paint Valley.

Meet at Seip Mound main parking lot on U.S. Rt. 50 by Paint Valley High School, 2.5 mi. east of Bainbridge, 5 miles west of Bourneville.

Hopewell Mound Group — June 20, July 18 and August 15

Length: 2 ¾ mile Difficulty Level: Easy, Mostly Flat

At 111 acres, the main enclosure is the largest single Hopewell earthen-walled area ever found and contained the largest Hopewell burial mound ever built. It was at this former farm owned Captain Mordecai Hopewell, that this prehistoric culture was first described by archaeologists. It is also form this site that the Hopewell Culture borrows its name.

Meet at Hopewell Mound Group parking lot, 3 miles northwest of Chillicothe on Sulphur Lick Rd., ¼ mile from Maple Grove Rd. near the west end of Anderson Station Rd. Driving maps are available at the main National Park Visitor Center at Mound City Group (16062 State Rt. 104), which opens at 8:30 am. Hopewell Mound Group is a 15 minute drive from the main visitor center.

The Robert L. Harness Lecture Series

Ohio Archeology 2009 Summer Lecture SeriesHopewell Culture National Historical Park is pleased to host the summer archeological lecture series. The following is a list of speakers and titles of topics to be presented. The weekly series will begin June 11th and end on July 23rd. The programs will be held at the Mound City Group Visitor Center located at 16062 St. Rt. 104 just north of Chillicothe. Each lecture will start at 7:30 P.M.

June 11, 2009

“Birds in the Hopewell Archeological Record”

Dr. Jarrod Burks, Ohio Valley Archeology, Inc.

The Hopewell were expert artists and worked in numerous media. From bone to copper and shell to pipe stone, birds were a very popular subject of Hopewell art. In this presentation I explore examples of the many kinds of bird imagery used by the Hopewell and talk about how birds fit into Hopewell society, according to some archaeologists. Is the bird imagery good enough for us to identify particular species some 2000 years later? What about actual bird remains, have archaeologists found evidence of birds (bones, beaks, talons, feathers, etc.) in Hopewell burials or in their trash pits? Bring your birding field guides and come find outbinoculars are optional for this birding expedition into Ohio’s past.

June 18, 2009

“Ancient Diggings”: A Review of Nineteenth Century Observations in the Prehistoric Copper Mining Pits of the Western Lake Superior Basin

Dr. John R. HalseyMichigan State Archeologist, Michigan Historical Center

Beginning in the late 1840s, Euro-American copper miners in the western Lake Superior basin became aware that someone had been there before them. With this realization came curiosity about who had done the mining, how long ago and how much copper had been removed. Eventually, evidence of prehistoric copper mining would be found over a swath 150 miles long, varying in width from four to seven miles in the Michigan counties of Keweenaw, Houghton and Ontonagon and also over much of Isle Royale in Lake Superior. As the miners cleared out the “ancient diggings” preparatory to establishing their own operations, a significant number of them recorded their observations and ideas. This presentation summarizes the contributions made by these pioneers and in particular those of Ohioan Charles Whittlesey, a towering figure in the history of Midwestern and Great Lakes archaeology.

June 25, 2009

“Ohio Hopewell Earthworks as a Historical Type of Ritual Landscape in the Eastern Woodlands.”
Dr. James Brown, Northwestern University, Evanston, IL

The Hopewellian geometric earthworks have rightly commanded attention as unique in many ways. Features possessed in common with earlier and latter mounds and earthworks have not been given the attention they deserve. These lie with ritual landscape in general, and because they take in much larger territory than the earthworks proper, the features connecting these earthworks over the millennia have gone unacknowledged. Our interest is in the various ways in which the same ritual principles have been expressed over the course of thousands of years.

July 2, 2009

“New Insights into Fort Ancient Social Structure, Settlement Patterning, and Subsistence.”

Dr. Rob Cook, Ohio State University, Newark, OH

Fort Ancient peoples were the last prehistoric inhabitants of the Middle Ohio River Valley, circa A.D. 1000-1650. The best known of their villages is the Sun Watch site, located in Dayton, Ohio along the Great Miami River. Recent analyses at the site and nearby settlements are revealing much about the Fort Ancient way of life. In particular, it is becoming increasingly clear that interactions with neighboring Mississippians were more important than previously recognized. This presentation highlights recent findings regarding this interaction and the structure of a landscape utilized by increasingly complex shifting horticulturalists whose practices and interactions were structured by environmental perturbations and population movements across the mid-continent.

July 9, 2009

“Recent Investigations at Mound City Group Earthworks.”

Dr. Kathleen Brady, Curator, Hopewell Culture NHP

During the summers of 2007 and 2008 archaeological investigations were conducted at a little-known site just north of the Mound City Group earthworks. In the 1980s, the site (33Ro338) was recorded as a Middle Woodland site based on a surface survey and limited testing. Plans to reforest the area renewed interest in the site and lead to a geophysical survey of the area by park staff and volunteers. Ground-truthing of anomalies yielded numerous cultural features and artifacts. Subsequent excavations have focused on two areasa prehistoric structure pattern and a group of aligned pit features. The site is believed to represent a specialized activity area associated with the use of the Mound City Group earthworks. Data from the current field season will also be presented.

July 16, 2009

“LiDAR Analysis of Prehistoric Earthworks.”

Dr. Bill Romain

The Ohio Hopewell are best-known for their monumental, geometrical-The Ohio Hopewell are best-known for their monumental, geometrical-shaped earthworks. Many of these structures are larger than several football fields. Recent findings made by using a new technology called LiDAR (infrared lasers that scan the ground from the air) have been able to show how the Hopewell built these earthworks in geomantic harmony with earth, sky, and water while using a specific unit of measurement. Join Dr. Romain as he discusses the use of cutting edge technology in archeology today and learn how the Hopewell laid-out the earthworks.

July 23, 2009

“The Earliest Americans: Current Perspectives on Paleoamerican Origins, Arrivals, and Ecology.”

Dr. Jerry N. McDonald, Virginia Museum of Natural HistoryMartinsville, Virginia, and McDonald & Woodward Publishing Company, Granville, OH

The contemporary recognition of Pre-Clovis, or Paleoamerican, human presence in North America began to emerge in the 1970s and gradually gained support during the following three decades. Paleoamerican presence has come to be an accepted albeit poorly defined part of North American prehistory. Important aspects of the emerging conception of Paleoamerican history on the continent include determination of the chronology of human arrivals; the source areas and routes and means of their dispersal; and the material culture, resource bases, and ecological strategies that typified these people.

This presentation will review current understanding of the time of arrival, source areas, material culture, and economic activities of North America’s Paleoamericans. The inventory of economic activities will emphasize insights obtained from the more complex and informative Paleoamerican sites, and will conclude with thoughts about the research frontiers associated with documenting and defining North America’s Paleoamerican history.

Summer Solstice Celebration

The summer solstice marks the longest day of the year and the beginning of the summer season. The solstice plays and important part in many cultures and has been celebrated since ancient times. According to archeo-astronomers, several earthworks created by the Hopewell Culture align with the rising and setting of the summer solstice sun, including Hopewell Culture National Historical Park’s Mound City Group site!

To help celebrate this amazing aspect of the Hopewell Culture, visitors of all ages are invited to join park rangers and witness as the solstice sun sets across Mound City’s northwest corner. The event will take place on Sunday, June 21, 2009 at 7pm. Evening activities will include a program highlighting the astronomical alignments of Hopewell earthworks, a ranger led tour of Mound City Group, and a beautiful sunset. Be sure to come out and take advantage of this great after hour’s event!

Hopewell Discovery Day

Saturday, October 10, 2009 10:00 a.m.-3 p.m.

Join in the fun at the park’s annual Hopewell Discovery Day. Activities include mound tours, flintknapping demonstrations, artifact identification, atlatl demonstrations, hands-on crafts, and plant and animal displays. All events are free.

Posted June 3, 2009
Topics: Archaeology

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