This National Historic Landmark where the St. Francis and Tyronza rivers converge contains Parkin Indian Mound. During the Pleistocene Age, 1.6 million years ago, the Mississippi River ran west of Crowley’s Ridge, and the Ohio River followed the path of the present-day Mississippi. Constantly changing course, the rivers eventually flowed together as one waterway, leaving behind oxbow lakes, swamps, natural levees, layers of alluvial soil, and paths for smaller streams that flow through the Delta. In the later Mississippian period, Native Americans found the area with its rich fertile soil and streams favorable for agriculture and for hunting and fishing. The Parkin site was enclosed within a three-sided protective ditch or moat and dominated by a central platform mound fronting on one or two plazas. Archeologists have also found sixteenth-century European artifacts here; these finds support the belief that the Spanish visited this site in 1541, and that it is the one described in Hernando de Soto’s journal as Casqui. The site survived because cotton farmers were unable to cultivate across the wide ditch. The park also includes a visitor center, a museum, and a research station.
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Parkin Archeological State Park
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