Cahokia culture (7th-14th centuries)

The Cahokia culture was a pre-Columbian Native American culture that flourished between the 7th and 14th centuries in the region of what is now southern Illinois in central North America. This culture is particularly known for its impressive earthworks and complex social structure. Here is some important information about Cahokia culture:

  • The City of Cahokia: The center of the Cahokia culture was the city of Cahokia, which covered an area of ​​approximately 16 square kilometers. This city, located in what is now Cahokia Mounds State Historic Site, was one of the largest prehistoric settlements in North America and was home to thousands of people.
  • Earthworks: One of the most notable features of the Cahokia culture was the earthworks, including platform mounds, conical mounds, and the impressive Cahokia Mounds pyramid. These earthworks probably served religious, ceremonial and social purposes.
  • Agriculture: The Cahokia culture practiced agriculture, primarily growing corn, beans, and squash. This made it possible to support a large population and the development of a complex society.
  • Society and Hierarchy: Society in the Cahokia culture was hierarchically structured, with an elite group of leaders and priests at the top. Social hierarchy was probably maintained through religious and political institutions.
  • Trade and Networks: The Cahokia culture was involved in regional trade networks, exchanging goods such as raw materials, jewelry, and artifacts with other cultures in the area.
  • Mysterious Decline: Despite their success and prosperity, the Cahokia culture experienced a rapid decline in population and the disappearance of the urban way of life in the 14th century. The exact reasons for this decline are the subject of scientific research and remain not fully understood to this day.

The Cahokia culture left a fascinating archaeological site and serves as an important example of the complex and advanced nature of pre-Columbian cultures in North America. Its impressive earthworks and cultural heritage continue to be researched and admired.