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Clam River Phase of the Late Woodland

(1,500 to 800 years ago)

In northwestern Wisconsin, people favored large dome-shaped mounds. Before building the Clam River mound in Burnett County, people built a fire, covered it with red ochre, and then laid down pine knot torches on top of that. Bone bundles containing several people were deposited on top and a mound was built over them. As time passed, more bone bundles were put on top of the mound and more layers were added to cover them. These 'accretionary' mounds grew to very large sizes compared to mounds in the south. Offerings in Clam River mounds were deposited at any stage of construction. Typical offerings include arrows, cooking pots, ceramic elbow pipes and stone tools.


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