Monday, March 31, 2008

Sunday Trip to Moundville Archaeological Park

Moundville is a 340-acre park south of Tuscaloosa, Alabama. It is one of the largest intact Mississippean sites in the United States. The Moundville site was occupied from around A.D. 1000 until A.D. 1450. At Moundville's peak, there were 1,000 inhabitants within the fortification and another 9,000 in the rest of the valley.

There are several ponds on the grounds that were formed when dirt was borrowed to build the mounds. The water level was still low due to the drought, so walked a short while along the dry banks. We wouldn't have picked up any flakes and chips, but we did look for them, mainly out of habit, I guess.

The Park sits on a bluff overlooking the Black Warrior River. During its occupation, there was a wooden palisade on the three remaining sides. Within the enclosure, were twenty-six earthen mounds. The largest pyramid is 58 feet above the surrounding grounds. There was a strict social order and the largest mounds were occupied by the highest ranking officials.

By 1450, Moundville only a handful of residents remained on the site. Nobody really knows why people left.

The creeks where we hunt artifacts eventually flow into the Black Warrior River.

Saturday, March 8, 2008

More Time In the Woods and the Lake

I like the outdoors as uncomplicated as possible. I don't own a big boat. I use a trolling motor for the small lake behind my home. I don't own a motor home. I didn't even own a riding lawn mower until we moved into this home. We have two acres and my wife talked me into it. It's fine for those who like it, but for me, I like to spend as much time outdoors as I can for as I little money as possible. I don't enjoy machine maintenance and loath dragging stuff into the repair shop. I owned an 18 ft Scout with a 115 Yamaha while I living on the coast. I enjoyed it and it was necessary for catching fish 12 months out of the year there. Here, I don't need it or want it.

My Outdoors Blog

I love the outdoors. I grew up in the country. Growing up, I spent most of free time in the woods. My brother and I waded creeks, climbed up and down limestone bluffs, and fished and swimmed in the lakes. In fact, for most of my childhood I lived within walking distance of several lakes, living lakeside a large part of the time. My family did move to the suburbs for three years, but even then we had plenty of green space just across the road - and a huge creek full of all kinds of neat stuff.

I have recently moved back to the place where I grew up, after living eleven years on the Alabama coast. We had a lot of fun there, but I am really enjoying being back home.