Mandan, Kansa or kin also lived on Ocmulgee River near Arawaks
Coosa River Study Update
Brown’s Mount – Macon, GA
Brown’s Mount is a 500+ feet tall prominence, about seven miles south of Macon, GA. It is one of the properties proposed for inclusion in the Ocmulgee National Historic Park. Archaeologists associated with the National Park Service excavated structures on top of Brown’s Mount several times between the 1930s and 1990s. Some of these structures were classified as “rectangular earth lodges.”
True earth lodges were impossible in the Southeast because there was no native grass capable of producing sod and no way to waterproof earthen roofs. They were earthberm houses. However, this is significant because the early houses at Ocmulgee National Monument were large round cones like those in northern South America and the later houses were rectangular chiki’s, typical of southern Mesoamerica.
Brown’s Mount also contained large round houses, typical of the Arawaks of northern South America and western Cuba. A large number of bowls and jars with owl motifs were found on Browns Mountain. The archaeologists didn’t realize it, but they were quite similar to the pottery made by the Toa People of the Toa River Valley in Cuba. The Toa considered owls to be sacred.
Intimate cultural contact with the Toasi (They were members of the Creek Confederacy) might explain why Creeks hold owls to be sacred and guardians of towns. It was said that especially righteous Creek elders opted to have their souls inhabit owls so they could protect their villages. In contrast, virtually all other North American indigenous peoples are terrified of owls and consider them to be the harbingers of death.
Bullard Landing Mounds – Twiggs County, GA (9TW1)
In 1989 and 1990, the LAMAR Institute and Ocmulgee Archaeological Society jointly excavated the Bullard Landing Mounds, which is 12 miles south of Macon. This site is also proposed for inclusion within the proposed Ocmulgee National Historic Park. The site contains at least 28 mounds. Most of these mounds were utilized as platforms to raise clusters of rectangular earthberm houses above the normal flood level of the Ocmulgee River.
Downstream from the people living on platformed, earthberm houses was the Province of Toa, which was visited by Hernando de Soto in the spring of 1540. What is very interesting is that the Province of Toasi (Offspring or Descendants of Toa) was located downstream on the Coosa River from the Kansa earthberm house villages. This means that three distinct ethnic groups, Southern Siouan, Arawak and Muskogean were living in close proximity and probably allies. The “si” suffex is pure Muskogean grammar. This is a continuation of what is seen throughout the Lower Southeast . . . two or more distinct ethnic groups assimilating into provinces.
Mandan Migration Legend
The Mandan remember living on the west side of a large river, across from an advanced society that built mounds and practiced large scale agriculture. That river is now called the Mississippi. However, given that we have seen that in the past academicians have repeated “fed” details to ancient migration legends to make them match their own theories, it is possible that the Mandan were on the west side of the Ocmulgee River a thousand years ago . . . because the sophisticated mound builders were definitely on the east side.
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