Archaeology at Owl Creek Mounds

Archaeology at Owl Creek Mounds (HM1LBD)

Location: New Houlka, MS 38850 Chickasaw County
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Country: United States of America
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N 34° 3.38', W 88° 55.461'

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Modern-Day Archaeology - Mound I

In the summers of 1991 and 1992, archaeology field schools from Mississippi State University worked to learn more about the site. Most of the excavations were done on top of Mounds I and II, with small test units dug into Mounds III, IV, and V. Broken pieces of pottery and other artifacts were recovered. Information on pits, buildings, and mound construction stages was also gathered.

Because the mounds contained few artifacts, they probably were used for short-term ceremonies rather than as permanent chiefs' residences.

In 1992, archaeologists searched for a village at Owl Creek. They dug shovel holes thirty yards apart over the entire site and sieved the dirt from 160 holes. Only a few broken pieces of pottery were found, which means that the site was not a place where many people lived. It was probably deserted for much of the year, between ceremonial gatherings.

Top View of Excavation
Many Mississippian mounds were platforms for temples or chiefs' houses. The excavation on Mound I found evidence of a building that had been rebuilt several times. At one time, the south wall was 20 feet long. It had two short walls extending to the south which possibly formed screens at the top of the ramp. The ramp faced south into the plaza. The steps in use today were added in recent times.

Side View of Excavation
Dirt layers of various colors, including gray, orange, olive green, and brown formed floors within the Mound I building. Perhaps a new layer was laid when the floor was renewed for ceremonial uses of the mound.
Placed ByUnited States Forest Service and Mississippi State University
Marker ConditionNo reports yet
Date Added Thursday, June 25th, 2015 at 10:04am PDT -07:00
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Locationbig map
UTM (WGS84 Datum)16S E 322395 N 3770072
Decimal Degrees34.05633333, -88.92435000
Degrees and Decimal MinutesN 34° 3.38', W 88° 55.461'
Degrees, Minutes and Seconds34° 3' 22.8" N, 88° 55' 27.66" W
Driving DirectionsGoogle Maps
Area Code(s)662
Which side of the road?Marker is on the right when traveling West
Closest Postal AddressAt or near 1153-1185 Co Rd 413, New Houlka MS 38850, US
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