Cultures of the Americas, 1200 BC–AD 1600

Resource type: 
Teaching Resource
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Mound Builders

(Atlantic Ocean to the Mississippi River)

Key Groups: Adena (500 BC), Hopewell (100 BC)

Religion and Culture: Known as mound builders because they buried the dead in large earth mounds, these groups lived in small farming villages, which were likely run by leaders of clans (relatives). The villages grew and became increasingly complex, building trade networks and creating elaborate artwork using materials from as far away as the Gulf of Mexico and the Great Lakes. Adena culture was absorbed by the Hopewell in about 100 BC.

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