Mississippi People - Native Americans on the Mississipi River
Quatr.us answers questions
Upgrade /Log in
Options /Log out
Early Europe
Central Asia
Islamic Empire
Native Americans
S./Central America
American History

Mississippian History

Mississippian warrior
A Mississippian warrior

About 800 AD, the old Hopewell people seem to have developed what we call the Mississippian culture. People living near the Mississippi river got new kinds of corn about this time. Now, instead of just building burial mounds, people built mounds with flat tops and built buildings on top of the mounds, like a Mayan temple. Some of these buildings were temples for the gods, and others were for rich, powerful families to live in. They lived in bigger towns, instead of small villages, and these towns also started to look more like Mayan towns. On the other hand, people seem to have lost interest in building big burial mounds.

These Mississippian people seem to have been powerful, so that they were able to take over a lot of the land near them, and build more towns with more mounds and temples. When they were at their most powerful, about 1200 to 1500 AD, they controlled land from Wisconsin to Tennessee and Florida.
But in the Late Mississippian period, beginning about 1400 AD, people seem to have been fighting a lot of wars with each other. Some towns were abandoned, and others built fortification walls. This might have been because of the climate cooling that happened around 1300-1400 AD, which also changed the lives of the Pueblo people to the west. This was the situation when Spanish invaders first landed in Florida just after 1500 AD.

Learn by doing: build a model Mississippian town in Lego or in Minecraft
Later Mississippian History

Bibliography and further reading about Mississippian history:

Hopewell culture
Mississippian culture
Cherokee people
Shawnee people
More about Native Americans
Quatr.us home

Professor Carr

Karen Eva Carr, PhD.
Assoc. Professor Emerita, History
Portland State University

Professor Carr holds a B.A. with high honors from Cornell University in classics and archaeology, and her M.A. and PhD. from the University of Michigan in Classical Art and Archaeology. She has excavated in Scotland, Cyprus, Greece, Israel, and Tunisia, and she has been teaching history to university students for a very long time.

Professor Carr's PSU page

Help support Quatr.us!

Quatr.us (formerly "History for Kids") is entirely supported by your generous donations and by our sponsors. Most donors give about $10. Can you give $10 today to keep this site running? Or give $50 to sponsor a page?

'Tis the season: read all about the history of Thanksgiving, Hanukkah, and Christmas. Who invented Christmas trees? Who were the Maccabees? When was Jesus really born? How did people celebrate Hanukkah in the Middle Ages? Plus, some great gift ideas.