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Bynum Mounds, Mississippi Mound Complex • Woodland

By Dr. Greg Little

Portions of this article come from The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Native American Mounds & Earthworks.

Bynum is a complex of mounds located on the Natchez Trace Parkway (at milepost 232.4) about 28 miles southwest of Tupelo, Mississippi. The site is maintained by the National Park Service and is one of several mound sites located on the Trace.

The six burial mounds and various habitation areas at the Bynum site were built during the middle Woodland period, between 100 B.C. and A.D. 100. The conical burial mounds range in height from 5 to 14-feet. Five of these mounds were excavated by the National Park Service in the late 1940’s. The two largest mounds have been restored for public viewing. Mound A, the southernmost of the two restored mounds, contained the remains of a woman placed between two parallel burned oak logs at the base of the mound. The remains had ornamental copper bracelets (spools) on each wrist. Three additional sets of remains were found, consisting of cremations of two adults and a child. Mound B, the largest, covered a log-lined crematory pit. An L-shaped row of 29 polished greenstone celts (ax heads) and cremated and unburned remains of several individuals were located in the pit. Other artifacts recovered from the mounds included copper spools, 10 chert points from Illinois, galena, and other high-prestige artifacts. Nearby are the Pharr Mounds and the Owl Creek Mound site.

Sunday, May 19, 2024