Discovering Buried Pasts: Illinois Transportation Archaeology and the Rediscovery of America’s First Native City

Alleen Betzenhauser, Thomas Emerson, Brad H. Koldehoff, Tamira K. Brennan

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

Abstract

Archaeology and transportation share a 60-year partnership in Illinois during which large-scale approaches to data recovery have become standard practices. These practices were recently employed to expose 28.5 acres of a precolumbian mound complex that is an integral part of Greater Cahokia. Investigations at East St. Louis were undertaken as part of the construction of the Stan Musial Veterans Memorial Bridge linking the cities of St. Louis and East St. Louis. Excavations exposed 4% of the mound center revealing 1,501 domestic and elite buildings, the base of an unrecorded mound, plazas, monumental posts, and several thousand pit features as well as a late Victorian neighborhood buried under 1 to 3 meters of modern industrial rubble. This research demonstrated the urban composition of Greater Cahokia and won recognition from both the Federal Highway Administration and the Chinese Academy of Sciences noting it was one of the top 10 international discoveries of 2015.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationINDIVIDUAL ABSTRACTS OF THE SAA 84TH ANNUAL MEETING
StatePublished - 2019

Keywords

  • ISAS

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    Betzenhauser, A., Emerson, T., Koldehoff, B. H., & Brennan, T. K. (2019). Discovering Buried Pasts: Illinois Transportation Archaeology and the Rediscovery of America’s First Native City. In INDIVIDUAL ABSTRACTS OF THE SAA 84TH ANNUAL MEETING