Marker Logo HMdb.org THE HISTORICAL
MARKER DATABASE
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Near Collinsville in Madison County, Illinois — The American Midwest (Great Lakes)
 

Cahokia

City of the Sun

 
 
Cahokia Marker image. Click for full size.
By Duane Hall, June 15, 2014
1. Cahokia Marker
Inscription. Cahokia was the largest prehistoric Indian community in America north of Mexico. It covered an area of six square-miles, including at least 120 mounds of different size and function. Initial occupation during Late Woodland times (AD 700-800) included small settlements along Cahokia Creek. These expanded and merged during early Mississippian times (AD 800-1000) and the population and community increased, reaching a peak between AD 1050-1150 with an estimated population of 10-20,000. A period of change and population decline began in the 1200s and by AD 1350-1400, Cahokia had been abandoned.
     Indians of the Mississippian culture built this community and many other large and small ones throughout the Mississippi floodplain and the adjacent uplands. Cahokia was the center of a large complex chiefdom that had ceremonial and trade connections to other Mississippian sites throughout the Midwest and Southeast.
     The decline of Cahokia may be attributed to a combination of many factors, including depletion of resources in the region; internal social and political unrest; external friction and conflicts with other groups; climatic changes affecting crops and local flora and fauna; soil exhaustion due to intensive agriculture; and loss of control and influence over contemporary sites and groups.


(Middle Left
Location and Distribution of Mounds at Cahokia image. Click for full size.
By Duane Hall, June 15, 2014
2. Location and Distribution of Mounds at Cahokia
Close-up of map on marker
Map Caption)

The location and distribution of mounds at Cahokia form a rough diamond with Monks Mound at its center. Canteen Creek, right, joins Cahokia Creek, which flows into the Mississippi River.

(Lower Left Illustration Caption)
Long distance trade brought many exotic materials to Cahokia’s markets, including Gulf Coast and Atlantic sea shells; copper from around Lake Superior; mica from the southern Appalachians; and chert (flint), salt, minerals and other goods from throughout the Midwest.

(Upper Center Illustration Caption)
Central Cahokia about A.D. 1150-1200

(Upper Right Illustration Caption)
Families lived in pole-and-thatch houses around the 120 mounds of this ancient city. Ceremonial buildings and the homes of the elite stood on top of the many platform mounds.
 
Erected by Cahokia Mounds State Historic Site.
 
Location. 38° 39.609′ N, 90° 3.547′ W. Marker is near Collinsville, Illinois, in Madison County. Marker can be reached from Collins Lane 0.1 miles north of Collinsville Road. Click for map. Collins Lane ends in a parking lot for the trail to Monks Mound; marker is located at the northwest corner of the parking lot. Marker is in this post office area: Collinsville IL 62234, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers.
The Prehistoric American Bottom with Mississippian Sites image. Click for full size.
By Duane Hall, June 15, 2014
3. The Prehistoric American Bottom with Mississippian Sites
Close-up of map on marker
At least 8 other markers are within 7 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Stockade (within shouting distance of this marker); Monks Mound (about 700 feet away, measured in a direct line); Grand Plaza (approx. 0.3 miles away); Woodhenge (approx. 0.8 miles away); Lewis and Clark and St. Louis Riverfront (approx. 7 miles away in Missouri); La Grande Rue (approx. 7 miles away in Missouri); Old Mission Hotel (approx. 7 miles away in Missouri); Old Judge Coffee Bldg. (approx. 7.1 miles away in Missouri). Click for a list of all markers in Collinsville.
 
Also see . . .  Cahokia Mounds State Historic Site. Official website of Cahokia Mounds State Historic Site. (Submitted on June 28, 2014.) 
 
Categories. Man-Made FeaturesNative AmericansSettlements & Settlers
 
Site Trail Guide for Cahokia Mounds image. Click for full size.
By Duane Hall, June 15, 2014
4. Site Trail Guide for Cahokia Mounds
Close-up of map on marker
Cahokia Marker image. Click for full size.
By Duane Hall, June 15, 2014
5. Cahokia Marker
At beginning of trail to Monks Mound
Monks Mound image. Click for full size.
By Duane Hall, June 15, 2014
6. Monks Mound
View to west from marker location
The Grand Plaza image. Click for full size.
By Duane Hall, June 15, 2014
7. The Grand Plaza
Woodhenge Reconstruction image. Click for full size.
By Duane Hall, May 18, 2010
8. Woodhenge Reconstruction
 
 
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Duane Hall of Abilene, Texas. This page has been viewed 303 times since then and 13 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7. submitted on , by Duane Hall of Abilene, Texas.   8. submitted on , by Duane Hall of Abilene, Texas. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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