History of Archaeological Investigations

© Photographed August 12, 2013 and July 21, 2015
Lake Mills, Jefferson County, Wisconsin
43° 4.131′ N, 88° 51.773′ W
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History of  Archaeological Investigations
Investigations at Aztalan can be divided into four general periods: early exploration, culture history determination, park development, and regional work/specific questions. The first written investigation was by Nathaniel Hyer, who published a site map in 1837. Increase A. Lapham prepared a more detailed map in 1850, and others also explored the site during the time. Extensive archaeological work began when Dr. Samuel A. Barrett of the Milwaukee Public Museum excavated in 1919, 1920, and 1932. He focused on understanding the site and its culture. Once the site was purchased by the state, activity focused on excavations which would contribute to park development. This work in the 1950's and 1960's traced stockade walls, explored platform mounds, and excavated houses. In the mid-1970's, work began to look beyond Aztalan itself to regional surveys of the surrounding area. In the 1980's and 1990's, work has been targeted to answering questions about site formation and development. In addition to excavating, some people have examined collections to address questions about culture history and specific cultural practices.
This marker is located at Aztalan State Park, N6200 Highway Q, Lake Mills, Wisconsin 53551.

Wisconsin Historical Society: Mississippian Culture and Aztalan

Wisconsin DNR: Atzalan State Park

Atzalan State Park

The marker is located at Aztalan State Park in Lake Mills, Wisconsin.

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