The View from Man Mound

Curt Meine

in The Vanishing Present: Wisconsin's Changing Lands, Waters, and Wildlife

Published by University of Chicago Press

Published in print September 2008 | ISBN: 9780226871714
Published online February 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780226871745 | DOI:
The View from Man Mound

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  • Biodiversity and Conservation Biology


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Man Mound Park protects something unique: a human-shaped effigy mound. At the time of Native/European contact in what is now Wisconsin, the landscape contained an estimated 15,000–20,000 Indian mounds. A succession of native societies had constructed the mounds over a 2,000-year period, from about 800 bc to 1200 ad. Over the last century and a half, agriculture and development have obliterated at least three-fourths of Wisconsin's Indian mounds. Of just nine known mounds built in the shape of a human or humanlike figure, Man Mound is the only one that survives in a relatively intact state. From Man Mound, we can look out and see that the history of Wisconsin's natural and human communities is woven together on Wisconsin's landscape. From here we can try to discern patterns in that relationship. This chapter begins with a review of the broad narrative of Wisconsin's past. It then discusses the impact of the advent of the public land survey on Wisconsin's landscapes and biodiversity.

Keywords: Indian mounds; Wisconsin; Man Mound; ecological change; public land survey

Chapter.  5254 words. 

Subjects: Biodiversity and Conservation Biology

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