Transposed Mound Fill in the CSX Railyard, East St. Louis Mound Center (11S706)

Joseph M. Galloy, Michael F. Kolb

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The East St. Louis Mound Center (11S706) was the second largest civic-ceremonial center in the Mississippian world. Urban-industrial development in the modern city of East St. Louis has both destroyed and preserved Mississippian deposits through borrowing, filling, and leveling. It has also obscured the site's original topography, complicating the identification of earthworks and habitation areas. In this article, we illustrate the challenges of detecting and characterizing this site using a testing project for the realignment of rail lines in the CSX Transportation, Inc. railyard. Coring in the railyard revealed fills that closely resemble the engineered "buckshot" fills in nearby Mounds 12 and 13. Subsequent trenching, however, proved that these fills were deposited during the nineteenth century while the railyard was built. The fills, which are laced with prehistoric artifacts, likely represent redeposited mound fill, which may derive from Mound 1 (Cemetery Mound), mounds within the railyard, or both.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)200--214
JournalIllinois Archaeology: Journal of the Illinois Archaeology Survey
StatePublished - 2008


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