Q6. Why did American Indians build the site at this specific location?
Archaeologists do not have a clear answer to that question. It may be that the site was simply a good place to camp. Perhaps there were great shade trees around the site at A.D. 1. Fishing on the Old River would have probably been good, too. Alternatively, there may have been few trees around the site allowing a clear view of the horizon in all directions. This may have made observing the stars, sun and moon easier. Given the ceremonial purpose of the site, people may have chosen this spot for religious reasons. Finding evidence for those religious reasons would be difficult, however.
Q7. Did American Indians live at the site permanently?
There is not really any evidence for a village at or anywhere near the site to suggest people lived nearby. It seems likely that a small group of people would have resided at or near the site in order to take care of it. Most people probably came to Marksville only to take part in ceremonies, staying just a short while.
Q8. How did American Indians at Marksville prepare and serve their food?
People probably cooked their food over fire pits or inside of earth ovens dug into the ground. They also likely used pottery for making and serving some of this food. Interestingly, archaeologists have found some large but poorly preserved deer bones in trash deposits along the edge of the bluff upon which Marksville sits. These kinds of bones are usually associated with the meatier parts of deer. This is what archaeologists would expect to find if the people of Marksville held big feasts at the site. Without more evidence, though, it is not clear that this was the case.
Q9. Were the dogs at Marksville pets?
Dogs have lived with people as companions, pets and co-workers for thousands of years. There were quite likely dogs living with the Marksville people. Two dogs were buried in Mound 4. One was buried in a pit on the platform and the other was buried in the overlying earth. The presence of these two dogs in their own pits within the burial mound suggests each was particularly important to the Marksville people. Perhaps these dogs were more than pets or companions and had a sacred or religious meaning to the people.
Q10. What kind of events took place at the Marksville site?
In additional to funerals and mound building, many other special activities may have happened at the Marksville site. These include feasts, weddings, trading, competitions and celebrations of celestial events.
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