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Near Lake Mills in Jefferson County, Wisconsin — The American Midwest (Great Lakes)
Aztalan Mound Park
 
Aztalan Mound Park Marker Photo, Click for full size
By William J. Toman, September 4, 2010
1. Aztalan Mound Park Marker
 
Inscription. Site of the famous prehistoric Indian stockade-protected village known as Aztalan first described by N.F. Hyer in the Milwaukee Advertiser in January 1837. Described by Dr. Increase A. Lapham, in The Antiquities of Wisconsin in 1855. Explored by the Milwaukee Public Museum in 1919-21. Purchased by the citizens of Jefferson County in 1922, and presented to the Wisconsin Archeological Society.
 
Erected 1927 by the Wisconsin Archeological Society.
 
Marker series. This marker is included in the National Historic Landmarks marker series.
 
Location. 43° 4.131′ N, 88° 51.773′ W. Marker is near Lake Mills, Wisconsin, in Jefferson County. Marker is on County Road Q 0.3 miles south of County Road B, on the left when traveling south. Click for map. The marker is adjacent to the parking lot at the entrance to the Aztalan State Park. A vehicle admission sticker is required just to park there. Theoretically, one could avoid the fee by parking on the highway and walking into the lot; aside from the safety issues, however, it is worth the price of admission to visit the rest of the park. Marker is in this post office area: Lake Mills WI 53551, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 7 miles
 
Aztalan Mound Park Marker Photo, Click for full size
By William J. Toman, September 4, 2010
2. Aztalan Mound Park Marker
The Aztalan marker and the reconstructed Aztalan stockade are in the background.
 
of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Aztalan (here, next to this marker); Pioneer Aztalan (approx. mile away); Princess Burial Mound (approx. mile away); Mamre Moravian Church (approx. mile away); Drumlins (approx. 1.3 miles away); In Service to Their Country (approx. 2.4 miles away); 94th Combat Infantry Division (approx. 2.4 miles away); The Island Church (approx. 7 miles away). Click for a list of all markers in Lake Mills.
 
Also see . . .  Aztalan State Park. (Submitted on September 6, 2010, by William J. Toman of Green Lake, Wisconsin.)
 
Aztalan Mounds Photo, Click for full size
By William J. Toman, September 4, 2010
3. Aztalan Mounds
 
 
Aztalan Mounds Photo, Click for full size
By William J. Toman, September 4, 2010
4. Aztalan Mounds
 
 
Aztalan Mounds Photo, Click for full size
By William J. Toman, September 4, 2010
5. Aztalan Mounds
 
 
Aztalan National Historic Landmark Marker Photo, Click for full size
By William J. Toman, September 4, 2010
6. Aztalan National Historic Landmark Marker
 
 
Related Aztalan Mound Marker Photo, Click for full size
By William J. Toman, September 4, 2010
7. Related Aztalan Mound Marker

Conical Mound Precinct

When I.A Lapham surveyed the site in 1850, there were over 40 mounds in this area. Today only these few remain. When these mounds were excavated by archaeologists in the 1920's, they found no burials, which was unexpected. Instead they found a large post set in a pit in the center of most mounds. The post was surrounded by gravel and soil and the pit capped with a mixture of clay and gravel to steady the post in its foundation. When all the mounds were built, you would have seen a row of tall posts set about ten feet above ground surface.

A few of the mounds were reported to have burials excavated by locals in the early 1800's. One mound at the north end of the row, currently located behind the Historical Society's museum, contained the famous "Princess Burial".

There are several theories about the purpose of the large posts. One is that they were marker mounds that marked the site for travelers. Another is that they were used for astronomical observations or to announce events. Yet another theory is that the posts were raised as part of a harvest or "green corn" ceremony because of their location overlooking the agricultural fields.

Whatever their purpose, it is clear they were sacred and played an integral part of village ceremonial life. The mounds are still considered sacred by Native Americans today.
 
Credits. This page originally submitted on September 4, 2010, by William J. Toman of Green Lake, Wisconsin. This page has been viewed 828 times since then. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on September 4, 2010, by William J. Toman of Green Lake, Wisconsin.   4, 5, 6, 7. submitted on September 5, 2010, by William J. Toman of Green Lake, Wisconsin. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page.
 
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