Seeing America

Before 1607

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videos + essays

Over the next two years, Seeing America will grow to include 100 videos, 18 essays, quizzes, discussion questions and lesson plans.

Uncoiling the cosmology of the ancient Americas at the Great Serpent Mound
Uncoiling the cosmology of the ancient Americas at the Great Serpent Mound

Many interpretations have been proposed for this mound in modern-day Ohio—examine the clues and see what you think.

Chaco Canyon: urban center of the Ancestral Puebloans
Chaco Canyon: urban center of the Ancestral Puebloans

Located in a high desert, Chaco’s residents dedicated much of their energy to controlling water for crops.

Mesa Verde: carving a home from the cliffs
Mesa Verde: carving a home from the cliffs

Remarkable structures in the American Southwest were home to cliff-dwelling farmers until around 1300.

America before Columbus: a Mississippian view of the cosmos
America before Columbus: a Mississippian view of the cosmos

Found marking the grave of an important individual, this gorget was worn as a neck ornament during life.