Updated Recently

Christian Science

Christian Science

1 week ago
Alice Walker

Alice Walker

1 week ago
Etowah Mounds

Etowah Mounds

1 week ago

Explore Georgia’s rich music history

From blues and soul to classical and country—our Spotify playlists feature 130+ songs written and performed by Georgians.

Singer-Moye Mounds

Singer-Moye Mounds

The excavation of the Singer-Moye Mounds in Stewart County has revealed the buried foundations of Indian buildings that were destroyed and abandoned more than 600 years ago. Thousands of ceramics fragments and animal bones have also been recovered.

Photograph by Elisabeth Hughes, New Georgia Encyclopedia

Lamar Period Pottery

Lamar Period Pottery

An example of Mississippian Lamar pottery, on display at the Ocmulgee Mounds Visitor Center in Macon.

Courtesy of Robert Foxworth

Ocmulgee National Historical Park

Ocmulgee National Historical Park

The earthen mounds at the Ocmulgee National Historical Park in Macon are the remains of a native culture that lived at the site between A.D. 800 and 1100, during the Early Mississippian period.

Photograph from National Park Service

Irene Mounds

Irene Mounds

Excavation of the Irene mounds site, near Savannah, was led by several important archaeologists, especially Joseph R. Caldwell, who is pictured with an excavation team. Three different shell layers are visible in the earth behind the researchers.

Reprinted by permission of the Coastal Georgia Archaeological Society

Irene Mounds

Irene Mounds

A square building at the Irene mounds site contained many burials. Archaeologists excavated skeletal remains by constructing crates in sections to fit precisely over the burial; each section was then shimmied down and leveled. Jewelry and pottery were often found buried with the human remains.

Reprinted by permission of the Coastal Georgia Archaeological Society

Irene Mounds

Irene Mounds

A group of African American women (pictured in December 1937) helped to excavate the Irene mounds site. The split oak basket, on the right, was made in Savannah especially for this project. The woman in the foreground is smoking a pipe.

Reprinted by permission of the Coastal Georgia Archaeological Society

Sapelo Shell Ring

Sapelo Shell Ring

A portion of the largest shell ring on Sapelo Island was excavated in 1950. The trench, cut into the ring by archaeologists, reveals white flecks of shell left behind by the hunter-gatherers who lived on the island during the Late Archaic Period, 5,000 to 3,000 years ago.

Courtesy of Victor D. Thompson

Shell Ring Sites

Shell Ring Sites

Shell rings, or middens, are found at various locations along the southeastern coast of the United States. Composed of shell, bone, artifact, and soil deposits, the rings contain a wealth of information about the lifeways of coastal societies during the Late Archaic period.

Courtesy of Victor D. Thompson

Sapelo Shell Ring

Sapelo Shell Ring

An archaeologist stands beside Shell Ring No. 1 on Sapelo Island. The shell rings, circular or semicircular in shape, are too large to be shown in their entirety by a single photograph.

Courtesy of Victor D. Thompson

Rock Eagle

Rock Eagle

Located north of Eatonton in Putnam County, Rock Eagle is an Indian-made rock structure dating back to the Middle Woodland period (300 B.C. to A.D. 600).

Photograph by Brian McInturff

Lamar Period Pottery

Lamar Period Pottery

Mississippian Lamar pottery is distinctive because of its unique stamping and shape.

Courtesy of Robert Foxworth

Ocmulgee National Monument

Ocmulgee National Monument

The chiefdom of Ichisi was located between modern Macon and Perry on the Ocmulgee River. The capital town was probably located at the present-day Lamar archaeological site, a part of Ocmulgee National Monument.

Riverside Etowah Indian Mound

Riverside Etowah Indian Mound

The Etowah mounds were built during the Lamar Period. Modern-day steps allow tourists to climb to the summit of the Etowah mounds.

Photograph by Muora

Nacoochee Mound

Nacoochee Mound

Although the original Late Prehistoric earthen platform mound has been completely excavated, a reconstruction of the Nacoochee Mound can be seen today on private property in the Nacoochee Valley.

Photograph by Martin LaBar

Weeden Island Period Pottery

Weeden Island Period Pottery

Drawings depict derived effigies with zoned incising found at the Davis Point excavation site at the Kolomoki Mounds. Weeden Island burial mounds are well known for the inclusion of elaborate animal effigy pots in large deposits.

From Excavations at Kolomoki, by W. H. Sears

Weeden Island Period Sherd

Weeden Island Period Sherd

A Weeden Island incised sherd found at the Kolomoki Mounds excavations is a variant of the zoned incised style (incised lines are used to delimit areas filled with other parallel incised lines).

From Excavations at Kolomoki, by W. H. Sears

Kolomoki Mounds

Kolomoki Mounds

The Kolomoki Mounds site in Early County is one of the largest prehistoric mound complexes in Georgia and includes at least eight mounds.

Courtesy of Kolomoki Mounds State Historic Park

Effigy Pipe

Effigy Pipe

During the Woodland Period some of the earliest peoples of the area we know today as Georgia developed wood crafts like this tobacco pipe, which reflects the importance of nature to indigenous Woodland cultures.

From Arrowhead and Spear Points in the Prehistoric Southeast: A Guide to Understanding Cultural Artifacts, by L. C. Culberson

Spear Points

Spear Points

Stone projectile tips like these from the Woodland Period are referred to as Coosa points.

From Arrowhead and Spear Points in the Prehistoric Southeast: A Guide to Understanding Cultural Artifacts, by L. C. Culberson

Suwannee Points

Suwannee Points

The Middle Paleoindian subperiod features smaller unfluted lanceolate projectile points such as the Suwannee types, among others.

Courtesy of the University of Georgia Laboratory of Archaeology

Fluted Cumberland Point

Fluted Cumberland Point

The Middle Paleoindian subperiod features fluted or unfluted points with broad blades and constricted handle elements, which may include the Cumberland type. Fluted points (pictured) have a channel or flute running from the base of the point.

Courtesy of the University of Georgia Laboratory of Archaeology

Fluted Dalton Points

Fluted Dalton Points

From the Late Paleoindian subperiod come Dalton and related point types, which are characterized by a lanceolate (lance-shaped) blade outline and a concave base ground on the lateral and basal margins, occasionally well thinned. Blade edges are frequently serrated and beveled.

Courtesy of the University of Georgia Laboratory of Archaeology

Clovis Points

Clovis Points

The Early Paleoindian subperiod is characterized by Clovis and related projectile point forms, relatively large lanceolate (lance-shaped) points with nearly parallel sides, slightly concave bases, and single or multiple basal flutes (channels) that rarely extend more than a third of the way up the body.

Courtesy of the University of Georgia Laboratory of Archaeology

Macon Plateau Fluted Point

Macon Plateau Fluted Point

Only one fluted point was found at Macon Plateau, in spite of a massive excavation effort. The fluted point, missing the forward one-third of its length, was of the Clovis type of these artifacts.

Courtesy of the University of Georgia Laboratory of Archaeology

Etowah Complicated Stamped Pottery

Etowah Complicated Stamped Pottery

This type of pottery originated in northwestern Georgia and is found in small quantities throughout the state. It is from the Middle Mississippian subperiod.

Courtesy of Mark Williams

Stallings Island Site Pottery

Stallings Island Site Pottery

Stallings Island, located in the Savannah River eight miles upstream from Augusta, is best known for its very early pottery, a technological development that predated the advent of farming in Georgia by several millennia. Pictured are sherds of the punctated fiber-tempered pottery, ca. 3,800-3,500 years ago. The sherd on top is actually 11 centimeters wide.

Courtesy of Kenneth E. Sassaman

Brewton Hill Complicated Stamped Pottery

Brewton Hill Complicated Stamped Pottery

Brewton Hill is a type of Swift Creek Complicated Stamped pottery from Chatham County, Georgia. This type of pottery is from the Middle Woodland subperiod.

Courtesy of Mark Williams

Swift Creek Pottery

Swift Creek Pottery

Illustrations of Early (top) and Late (bottom) Swift Creek Complicated Stamped pottery.

Courtesy of Kennesaw State University

King Site Map

King Site Map

The King site in Floyd County covers a little more than five acres and is bounded by a defensive ditch and palisade. It was first occupied at some time during the first half of the sixteenth century.

Courtesy of David Hally

Natchez Indian Warrior

Natchez Indian Warrior

A Louisiana Natchez warrior of the Mississippian Period is illustrated with typical weapons also used by Georgia Indians.

Courtesy of Smithsonian Institution, National Anthropological Archives

Mississippian Earthlodge

Mississippian Earthlodge

Photograph of ceremonial earthlodge which has been reconstructed and is today part of the Ocmulgee National Monument in Macon, Georgia.

Image from Ken Lund

View on source site

Etowah Mounds

Etowah Mounds

The Etowah Mounds, located near Cartersville, are (left to right) Mound C, Mound B, and Mound A. Mound A, a temple mound, is the tallest structure in the area and affords an impressive view of the Etowah River valley. The top of the mound is about an acre in size.

Courtesy of Adam King

Etowah Indian Figures

Etowah Indian Figures

Archaeological excavation, carried out intermittently at the Etowah mound site for more than 100 years, has unearthed artifacts such as these figures, which have provided much information about life in the Mississippian Period.

Photograph from Wikimedia

Hernando de Soto

Hernando de Soto

Hernando de Soto was a Spanish-born explorer and conqueror who landed in present-day Tampa Bay, Florida, in 1539 and came to the Georgia area in 1540. Chroniclers of the expedition described the Coosa River valley in glowing terms.

Swift Creek Culture

Swift Creek Culture

Swift Creek pottery is noted for its distinctive decoration. Complex curvilinear patterns were first carved into a wooden paddle, which was used to stamp the design into the soft clay walls of the pottery before it was fired.

Courtesy of Kennesaw State University

Swift Creek Pottery Fragments

Swift Creek Pottery Fragments

Given the lengthy period during which this pottery was popular, it is unlikely that the term "Swift Creek archaeological culture" refers to only one group of people. Probably several cultural groups shared this particular pottery style.

Courtesy of Kennesaw State University

Cane Island Site

Cane Island Site

In 1978 and 1979 the University of Georgia's Department of Anthropology excavated portions of the Cane Island archaeological site before it was flooded. It now lies beneath Lake Oconee in Greene County, Georgia.

Courtesy of W. Dean Wood

Oconee River

Oconee River

Cane Island, the site of one of the earliest Native American farming villages in Georgia, was located in present-day Greene County along a shallow portion of the Oconee River known as Long Shoals. Wild plants and animals around the river likely supplied most of the food for the Cane Island residents.

Courtesy of W. Dean Wood

Sara’s Ridge

Sara’s Ridge

An illustration of what Sara's Ridge probably looked like during the Middle Archaic Period. The woman in the foreground is cooking with soapstone slabs, while hunters carry a deer toward racks where fish are hung over a fire.

From Beneath These Waters, by S. Kane and R. Keeton

Upper Savannah River

Upper Savannah River

Archaeologists excavated a prehistoric Indian village in Rucker's Bottom near the Savannah River about 500 years after the civilization's height.

Etowah Indian Mounds

Etowah Indian Mounds

A path leading to two of the mounds at the Etowah Indian Mounds Historic Site. Located in Bartow County, the site is home to the second-largest Indian mound in North America, rises to a height of slightly more than 60 feet.

Photograph from Sharon Meier

Etowah Indian Figures

Etowah Indian Figures

Archaeological excavation, carried out intermittently at the site for more than a hundred years, has unearthed artifacts such as these stone figures, which have provided much information life in the Mississippian Period.

Etowah River

Etowah River

The Etowah River, with headwaters near Dahlonega, flows west-southwest for 140 miles to Rome, where it forms the Coosa River when it joins the Oostanaula River.

Image from Kevin Trotman

View on source site

Etowah Indian Mounds

Etowah Indian Mounds

Modern-day steps lead to the summit of one of the Indian mounds at the Etowah site.

Courtesy of Georgia Department of Natural Resources, Georgia State Parks.

Kolomoki Mounds

Kolomoki Mounds

Archaeologists now recognize that the main occupation of the Kolomoki Mounds site dates to the Woodland Period (1000 B.C.-A.D. 900).

Kolomoki Mounds Artifact

Kolomoki Mounds Artifact

Ceramic artifacts were found during excavations of the Kolomoki Mounds in Early County.

Photograph by Bubba73, Wikimedia Commons