Moundville Native American Festival

Each year, the Moundville Archaeological Park in Moundville, Alabama, holds their Native American Festival. They host thousands of school children for learning about Native American customs, playing games, eating native foods and such. My friend Cynthia, who recently decided to homeschool her two little boys, and I loaded up our kiddos and headed west to Moundville. It was a great day of learning and playing with our little ones.
Although it was unseasonable hot (which we were not dressed for – we melted!), the children all had fun learning about customs and traditions from Native American. They learned how to make pottery from clay and harden it in a fire…
This sweet lady taught them how to grind corn into meal and make hominy.

My girls are girlie girls and they LOVE their dolls. Here they learned how to make dolls from corn husks.

There was, of course, face painting.

We have been studying in history about the colonists coming to America and settling Jamestown, the Massachusetts Bay Colony, and other colonies. We learned all about the Dutch West India Company and the colony they founded New Amsterdam (later to be called New York) on the island of Manhattan. They bought the island of Manhattan from the Native Americans for the equivalent of $24 in glass beads and trinkets. The man shown below gave us a fascinating review of the history of the Dutch West India Company and how they had to teach the Indians to covet (they were accustomed to communal living whee everything was shared.) in order to have any trading power with them. It all sounded so similar to how some large companies operate today. Aren’t we supposed to be learning from history so we will not be doomed to repeat it?!?

Mound State Park has been in existence for many years in Alabama. However, a few years ago, the University of Alabama began to operate it is a research park, and they have pumped a lot of money into it. As such, they have built it into a really well-presented memorial to the Mound Indians and their life in Moundville. I’m so glad we got to go, and it was especially nice having friends for the field trip!

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