Ocmulgee National Monument

 


Ocmulgee National MonumentOcmulgee is a memorial to the antiquity of man in this corner of the North American continent. The National Monument preserves a continuous record of human life in the Southeast from the earliest times to the present. From Ice-Age hunters to the Muscogee (Creek) people of historic times, there is evidence here of 12,000 years of human habitation.

One period stands out. Between AD 900 and 1200 a skillful farming people lived on this site. Known to us as Mississippians, they were part of a distinctive culture which crystallized about AD 750 in the middle Mississippi Valley and over the next seven centuries spread along riverways throughout much of the central and eastern United States. The Mississippians brought a more complex way of life to the region and here they left behind eight earthen mounds and the remains of a ceremonial earthlodge.

The Monument today consists of two units separated by two miles of riverine wetlands along the Ocmulgee River. The Main Unit is adjacent to the city of Macon, an urban area with a population of 118,000. The isolated Lamar Mounds and Village Unit can be visited by special permit.

Visitors can learn about Middle Georgia's history through exhibits and a 17-minute movie at the Museum, stroll to the Earthlodge and Early Mississippian temple mounds or take a spring or autumn Ranger-led field trip to the Lamar Mounds and Village.

 

Getting There:
The Monument is on the east side of Macon on US 80 east (Emery Highway). Main access is from Interstate 75 to Interstate 16 east, at the north end of Macon. Take the second exit from Interstate 16 (Coliseum Exit) and follow the signs 1.6 miles.