I’m back in the vault again today with Eric Singleton, Ph.D., our Curator of Ethnology to show you more cool things from our upcoming exhibition “Spiro and the Art of the Mississippian World.” I told Seth from Marketing we could just do this in one day and he said that we have to “spread out the content.” The objects in the exhibition are from Oklahoma to Cahokia to Lake Jackson. That’s pretty spread out. Lol! Very cool that we’ve been able to bring all this together in one exhibition. Who knows if these art and artifacts will ever be together in one location together again?
Tim: In case some folks haven’t read my last couple of “blogs,” what should they know about the Spiroan and the Mississippian people.
Eric: Well, the Mississippian people created highly developed, agriculturally based communities that were mostly fortified and contained large earthen mounds and broad plazas. These towns and cities were the centers of political, social, and ceremonial life in this period.
Tim: I’m so excited to see these objects from so long ago but found in North America. What do you have for today?
Eric: Here’s a twist for you. I can “Lol” also, right? This is actually not from Spiro but from Europe. But it describes the Mississippians in 1591. This is a hand-colored engraving by Theodor de Bry depicting early European explorations of North America.
Tim: This was painted by hand?
Eric: Yes, and what makes that so exciting is that no two of these were alike.
Tim: I don’t think I even type as well as this fella wrote. Lol!