Ancient Art in Ohio

Ohio is full of Indigenous Culture and you don’t have to travel far to find it!  Take a leisurely drive down a beautiful route of the Midwest’s countryside to Peebes, Ohio to visit the great Serpent Mound made by Indigenous People of Ohio!  Serpent Mound is a Historical Site that features one of the worlds largest Earthworks in the world!  The prehistoric mound is a spiraling snake that is 1,348-foot-long and three-foot-high sitting on a woodland plateau along the Ohio Brush Creek. This Earthwork is an effigy mound which is a raised pile of earth built in the shape of a stylized animal, symbol, or human figure.  The indigenous people that made this breathtaking natural art piece were both the Adena and Fort Ancient Cultures between 381 B.C. and 44 B.C.  This place has a sense of wonderment and it’s still a mystery of why they built it, some say it’s for spiritual purposes and ceremonial celebrations for the Solstice and Equinox.

Walk the trail along the mound and take in the beauty of it while you imagine what it would be like to build this massive earthwork with a team of people by hand. Reflect on the craftsmanship and hard work of the ancient artists that created it over a thousand years ago. Just make sure you stay on the path and don’t walk on top of the sacred mounds.  There are two overlooks that you must stop at to take in the view of the vibrant green treetop canopy that leads to the river, which has another beautiful trail that’s through the forest. This Nature Trail, is the Ohio Brush Creek Hiking Trail, that is an easy 1-mile hike that takes you into the valley, past the river, and brings you back up to the Serpent.  You could even take a swim in the river on a hot day to cool off, or hang a hammock to relax in the shade.

If you aren’t afraid of heights then make sure you check out the spectacular aerial view of the winding mound to see the full form of the serpent on the observation deck that’s there! The steps are a bit steep but the climb to the top is worth it to get the full appreciation of the spectacular mound!  There are plenty of picnic tables to have lunch at and discuss the magical place while enjoying the lovely nature all around you.  I recommend packing a lunch because There are not many additional attractions or restaurants in the area. You can also visit a small museum to stop into for educational facts, diagrams of how the mound was made, artifacts and gifts.

The Ohio State Archaeological Society has helped preserve this great piece of history and they offer volunteer opportunities for people interested in preserving, studying, and caring for ancient sites.  This is the perfect place to put on your Ohio Day Trip Bucket List! It’s also a wonderful place to learn about indigenous culture and history in Ohio. Serpent Mound was purposefully built for a special, sacred purpose and should be treat with respect and care while visiting.

They have events like traditional celebrations that honor the solstice and festivals that highlight the ways of the ancient people that came before us.  Some of the events include, retreats, workshops, live music, drum circles, and camping outings. Upcoming events to check out are, the Autumn Equinox at Serpent Mound, September 14th, the Serpent Mound Star Knowledge Peace Summit Festival, September 24th-26th and Light Up the Serpent for the Winter Solstice, December 6th, which is a ceremonial candle lighting outlining the serpent effigy in an effort to reflect upon the history and the importance of this world-renowned earthwork.

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