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Methods, Mounds, and MissionsNew Contributions to Florida Archaeology$
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Ann S. Cordell and Jeffrey M. Mitchem

Print publication date: 2021

Print ISBN-13: 9781683402138

Published to Florida Scholarship Online: May 2022

DOI: 10.5744/florida/9781683402138.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM FLORIDA SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.florida.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University Press of Florida, 2022. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in FLASO for personal use.date: 30 June 2022

A New Look at a Very Old Place

A New Look at a Very Old Place

A Symbolic Analysis of the Mound/Pond Complex, the Fort Center Site, Glades County, Florida

Chapter:
(p.81) 4 A New Look at a Very Old Place
Source:
Methods, Mounds, and Missions
Author(s):

Karl T. Steinen

Publisher:
University Press of Florida
DOI:10.5744/florida/9781683402138.003.0005

Here is offered a new twist on the traditional view of the mound/pond complex at the Fort Center site (AD 200–800) in the Lake Okeechobee Basin of south Florida by interpreting the site through the lens of a Cherokee creation myth. Although recent work contradicts the elaborate mortuary pond platform proposed by Sears, Sears's original reconstructions are used because they provide the detailed stratigraphic sequences that are the basis for the interpretations. Brief summaries of the components of the mound/pond complex and the construction sequence are first provided. Then the construction sequence is discussed in terms of how it closely corresponds to aspects of the Earth Diver myth as recorded by Mooney for the Cherokee. The mound/pond complex is interpreted as an idealized reconstruction of the cosmos of Southeastern Indians, per Hudson (1976).

Keywords:   South Florida, Fort Center site, stratigraphic sequences, construction sequence, Ceremonialism, Cherokee creation myth, Southeastern Indians

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