Key Adena Earthworks and Preserve Saved in Ohio
The Resurrected Ones
In pre-Columbian Algonquian cosmology, humans resurrect as pigeons and other migratory birds, in order to reach the celestial destination of the afterlife journey, explaining why a civilization would undertake extraordinary labors to protect birds during nesting and migration. A second function of the earthworks appears to have been to guide the birds along the proper celestial path, which accounts for why many but not all of the earthworks were built with celestial alignments, or as “star maps” that reflect the heavens just as they would be reflected in the water-filled moats. Modern ornithologists did not discover that migratory birds navigate in part by the stars until the 1990s, but American Indians apparently gained that knowledge long ago.
The Junction Group may be the stellar example of a “star map” because the earthwork cluster appears to be a mirror-image of the Pleiades, a star cluster used worldwide for celestial navigation and marking the change of seasons. The Pleiades were considered by Algonquians as a group of children resurrected in bird form as stars, and as the possible portal to the sky world (world of the dead) mentioned often in Algonquian folktales.
In the Shawnee language, the Pleiades are called Pekwilenegi, a name that translates literally as “people from the ashes” in reference to a myth similar to that of the Greek phoenix, a bird that rises from the ashes with allusion to cremation of the dead, or simply put, “the resurrected ones.”
Following are the nine principal structures of the Junction Group as revealed by magnetic imaging in 2005, a diagram of the nine principal stars in the Pleiades as named by the Greeks, and the Pleiades as they appear in the sky (with telescopic lens):
The Junction Group was not a “ceremonial site” but a funereal one.
You need to be logged in in order to post comments
Please use the log in option at the bottom of this page