Woodland and Mississippian Tradition

Content and design by Dr. Chris Henige, Art Department, University of Wisconsin-Whitewater

The Logan Museum of Anthropology at Beloit College in Beloit, Wisconsin, possesses a diverse collection of artifacts from the Woodland and Mississippian cultures of eastern North America. Not only are all of the major culture areas represented, but also a multitude of vessel forms and decorative techniques. The collections provide an excellent basis for a survey of the ceramic art of the early inhabitants of southeastern North America before the arrival of the Europeans.

Unfortunately, the provenience of only a small percentage of the artifacts is established. Most have been identified in the records under such elusive headings as "Mound Builders" or "Mid-Mississippian". A slight majority of the objects were associated with a particular town or county, and as such it seemed best to present the materials first by culture area, then by state and county. A particularly large group of objects originated in Scott County, Missouri, but sadly we have no additional information about how these artifacts were obtained and from where they might have derived. Some of the unidentified objects have been associated with the area from which they appear to have originated. Others have been presented under the heading "Unattributed". Any assistance that those more expert than I might provide in identifying these particular objects, or in correcting any of my attributions which appear to be in error, are gladly welcomed. 

Culture Overview :: Vessel Forms :: Decorative Techniques :: Artifacts