A highly evolved civilization, almost unknown to history, thrived in North America for centuries long before the coming of Europeans.The Camp of God's Tears is a tragic tale about this civilization as it ended. This story is grounded in fact according to archeological, genetic, and linguistic data as reflected in the Afterward which presents supportive information and a bibliography of nearly 400 sources. This saga is told as a narrative by Gray Wolf who begins his story during his late adolescence and follows through six generations until he becomes a great-grandfather.The Camp of God's Tears reveals the high level of sophistication of this culture which was far more advanced than many cultures of the same time period, circa 300 AD. More importantly, it articulates the depth of their spirituality and moral codes by which these people lived. While the mysterious ending of a great culture is heart-rendering, the story ends on a note of hope for contemporary times. The story came to me in a dream. It was told to me by Falling Star. She answered a myriad of questions I asked. She showed me the locations of where the events in the story took place. She showed me her People who wore exotic clothes made of finely woven textiles decorated with pearls, copper and other artistic ornaments. She showed me strongly built homes, their villages, and their expansive farms. I saw their social organization was powerful yet simple, a few shaman, elders, and no real leaders. She intrigued me with their immense earthworks which demonstrate accurate astronomical alignments to the Sun, Moon, stars, and galaxies. The organization of labor, engineering skills, mathematical and astronomical knowledge required to build these phenomenal earthworks amazes modern researchers. I asked Falling Star why she showed me all of this. She said her People wanted their story told and asked me if I would tell it. Of course, I said, and then I asked her why. She said her People were so deeply spiritual, so in tune and in touch with the Creator that they actively lived the principles of Oneness. Their ways demonstrated what being one and at one with the One . . . looked like in real life. She said the people of my time need to know these principles and to learn to live them, because humankind is struggling to regain balance in a troubled world.
This book is about Charles Clark Willoughby's studies on the collection of artifacts and field records from the 1891–1892 excavations at the Hopewell Site that were included in the Field Museum. The engineering achievements seen in the geometric earthworks reflect social energy and commitment.
Among the most socially and personally vocal archaeological remains on the North American continent are the massive and often complexly designed earthen architecture of Hopewellian peoples of two thousand years ago, their elaborately embellished works of art made of glistening metals and stones from faraway places, and their highly formalized mortuaries. In this book, twenty-one researchers in interwoven efforts immerse themselves and the reader in this vibrant archaeological record in order to richly reconstruct the societies, rituals, and ritual interactions of Hopewellian peoples. By finding the faces, actions, and motivations of Hopewellian peoples as individuals who constructed knowable social roles, the authors explore, in a personalized and locally contextualized manner, the details of Hopewellian life: leadership, its sacred and secular power bases, recruitment, and formalization over time; systems of social ranking and prestige; animal-totemic clan organization, kinship structures, and sodalities; gender roles, prestige, work load, and health; community organization in its tri-scalar residential, symbolic, and demographic forms; intercommunity alliances and changes in their strategies and expanses over time; and interregional travels for power questing, pilgrimage, healing, tutelage, and acquiring ritual knowledge. This book is useful to scholars, graduate students, and advanced undergraduates interested in the workings and development of social complexity at local and interregional scales, recent theoretical developments in the anthropology of the topics listed above, the prehistory of eastern North America, its history of intellectual development, and Native American ritual, symbolism, and belief.
Nearly 2000 years ago, people living in the river valleys of southern Ohio built earthen monuments on a scale that is unmatched in the archaeological record for small-scale societies. The period from c. 200 BC to c. AD 500 (Early to Middle Woodland) witnessed the construction of mounds, earthen walls, ditches, borrow pits and other earthen and stone features covering dozen of hectares at many sites and hundreds of hectares at some. The development of the vast Hopewell Culture geometric earthwork complexes such as those at Mound City, Chilicothe; Hopewell; and the Newark earthworks was accompanied by the establishment of wide-ranging cultural contacts reflected in the movement of exotic and strikingly beautiful artefacts such as elaborate tobacco pipes, obsidian and chert arrowheads, copper axes and regalia, animal figurines and delicately carved sheets of mica. These phenomena, coupled with complex burial rituals, indicate the emergence of a political economy based on a powerful ideology of individual power and prestige, and the creation of a vast cultural landscape within which the monument complexes were central to a ritual cycle encompassing a substantial geographical area. The labour needed to build these vast cultural landscapes exceeds population estimates for the region, and suggests that people from near (and possibly far) travelled to the Scioto and other river valleys to help with construction of these monumental earthen complexes. Here, Mark Lynott draws on more than a decade of research and extensive new datasets to re-examine the spectacular and massive scale Ohio Hopewell landscapes and to explore the society that created them.