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Alternate Perceptions Magazine, July 2022

The Mississippi Mound Trail & The Louisiana Mound Trail Guide

by: Dr. Greg Little

Starting more than a decade ago, the Mississippi Department of Archives & History began to plan and establish a public driving trail, primarily following the Mississippi River, leading to 33 ancient mound sites. Essentially, one could start the trip in Memphis and then head south down the famous Highway 61 and see nearly all of these sites. Many of the sites along the route are designed to allow only a view of the mounds while others do allow visitors to explore a bit. They all have historical markers and parking areas, and can be easy to find. However, the state has perhaps a hundred or more other mound sites not on the trail, essentially mounds found east of the river. You can find information on the sites on the Mississippi Mound trail here: http://trails.mdah.ms.gov/mmt/

About two months ago, we took a trip driving down the mound trail from Memphis, viewing about 20 of these sites (some of which we had not previously visited). On that trip we also investigated several mound sites not on their trail, but are located in the vicinity of sites that are listed. It took about 4 days of driving. After we went to the southernmost sites, we went back north and crossed the Mississippi River at Natchez into Louisiana. That drive took only 2 days.

As with Mississippi the Louisiana Division of Archaeology created a mound trail for their state, again, mainly following the Mississippi River. There are some 44 sites on their trail, but many are quite remote. Most of these sites we had previously visited, but there were maybe 10 sites we had never seen. Many of the mound complexes in both Mississippi and Louisiana are very impressive, well worth a family excursion. You can find information on the Louisiana mound trail here:

If you have an interest in finding mounds in other states, there is an Alabama mound guide:

For those interested in mounds in other states, there is The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Native American Indian Mounds & Earthworks:

Wednesday, November 29, 2023