Friday, September 12, 2008

Revising and Re-sizing History: New Work Shows Ohio Site to Be Ancient Water Works, Not a Fort
The site known as Miami Fort is no fort at all, and it is also much larger than previously believed – so large, in fact, that its berms stretch to almost six kilometers in length, making it twice as large as any other Native American earthworks in Ohio, and one of the largest in the nation.

Those are discoveries made this summer by members of UC’s Ohio Valley Archaeology Field School project, who spent weeks working at the site in Hamilton County’s Shawnee Lookout park.

What they found actually offers great insight into the cultural priorities of the Shawnee – the incredible amounts of human labor that went into building the earthworks were done for agricultural purposes, not military. The earthworks were not a fort, but a water management system of dams and canals built to counter the impact of long-term drought.