Over a period of 5000 years, a diverse and mysterious group of people lived in the Mississippi river valley. Everywhere they settled, they created earthen mounds. These range from small lumps to the grand Monk’s Mound in the pre-Columbian city of Cahokia, across from St. Louis, which contained 120 mounds. Many of these earthworks are flat-topped pyramids; others are spherical, conical, rectangular. All had a ceremonial purpose. But the most interesting of the mounds are the effigies, built in the likeness of mammals, birds, or reptiles.
There are 2 famous effigies in southern Ohio, the Great Serpent Mound and Alligator Mound. However, the greatest concentration is at Effigy Mounds National Park in Iowa. There are ~200 mounds, 31 of which are effigies, preserved here. I would love to visit this park, and the surrounding area, to connect with a vanished people who had a relationship with the natural world that is unknown in America today.