The Middle Mississippian Colony at Trempealeau

Sunday, September 30, 2018


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EnlargePhotograph of WHS Press author Robert "Ernie" Boszhardt

Robert "Ernie" Boszhardt

The Wisconsin Historical Society Speakers Bureau offers an exciting opportunity for our historians, curators and authors to visit your community and share the stories of our great state.

Coinciding with the dawn of the Middle Mississippian Culture at the ancient city of Cahokia nearly 1,000 years ago, a group canoed over 500 miles up the Mississippi River to establish a settlement at Trempealeau, Wisconsin. Antiquarian records alluded to distinct platform mounds and exotic ceramics, but only recently has the age, extent, and purpose of Trempealeau's very early Mississippian expression been thoroughly explored. Ongoing excavations since 2010 have revealed why Cahokians came to this far-flung yet short-lived outpost, carrying ceramic vessels and a variety of flint stones from their homeland, along with their architecture and religion.

Robert "Ernie" Boszhardt is a Wisconsin archaeologist with over 40 years of experience. His research has focused on the unglaciated Driftless Area of western Wisconsin, where he has studied and written extensively about nearly all aspects of that region's archaeological heritage, including Paleoindian, Hopewell, Effigy Mounds, Oneota, rock art, and most recently Middle Mississippian. He currently is co-owner of Driftless Pathways, LLC with his wife Danielle Benden. Together, they direct the Trempealeau Archaeology Project.

Boszhardt-authored books on the Trempealeau research and regional rock art will be available for purchase and signing at the talk. Boszhardt co-authored the Wisconsin Historical Society Press book Hidden Thunder: Rock Art of the Upper Midwest with Geri Schrab.


Sabin Hall, Room G90, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee
3413 N Downer Ave
Milwaukee, WI 53211