In May 2011, Illinois State Archaeological Survey (ISAS) personnel encountered a large area of unusual fills at the East St. Louis Mound Complex (11S706) during excavations for the new Mississippi River Bridge (NMRB) project. These fills proved to be the remnants of previously undocumented Mississippian mound and borrow pit features, partially preserved beneath the historic overburden of industrial East St. Louis. As investigations progressed, a suite of related features were discovered, including a large submound pit, associated human burials, a possible Lohmann phase cemetery, and evidence of other large-scale landscape modification. The discovery of Main Street Mound afforded two rare opportunities: detailed professional investigations into one of the few extant monuments at East St. Louis and the chance to preserve this and related features in perpetuity through a redesign of the NMRB project corridor. The decision to set aside this thousand-year-old sacred site as a preserve creates a physical link to a long-forgotten landscape, acknowledging the significance of the distant past to the present.
|Name||ISAS Research Report no. 36|