Seismic Survey of Poverty Point Mound A


Poverty Point is a UNESCO World Heritage Site known for its monumental earthworks. The largest and most significant feature on the site, Mound A, is over 21 meters high and 200 meters long. Currently, it is believed to have been built in three months at most. This supports the idea that there was a central leader directing its construction, a more socio-politically complex society than previous hunter-gatherer populations in North America. Evidence of stratigraphic layering, however, is an indication of a slow mound construction over centuries. Gaining insight of the construction style and timeline of Mound A will lead to an improved understanding of the site. Mound Builders have been known to cap mounds built in stages. If Mound A was built in stages it is likely capped with more dense material than the dirt surrounding it. To better understand the construction history of Mound A, we conducted a seismic reflection survey over the mound. The seismic data had a normal moveout correction, it was stacked, and migrated. Additionally, with the application of quadcopter-based photogrammetry, a three-dimensional digital model of Mound A was developed to display and assist in further understanding of these data.

Cite this Record

Seismic Survey of Poverty Point Mound A. William Frazer, James Bourke, Timothy de Smet, Alex Nikulin. Presented at The 82nd Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Washington, DC. 2018 ( tDAR id: 445107)

This Resource is Part of the Following Collections

Spatial Coverage

min long: -93.735; min lat: 24.847 ; max long: -73.389; max lat: 39.572 ;

Record Identifiers

Abstract Id(s): 21556