Poverty Point World Heritage Site

Prehistoric site of the Poverty Point culture in northeastern Louisiana, United States

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Poverty Point National Monument
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Map showing the location of Poverty Point National Monument
Map showing the location of Poverty Point National Monument
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Map showing the location of Poverty Point National Monument
Map showing the location of Poverty Point National Monument
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LocationWest Carroll Parish, Louisiana, U.S.
Nearest cityEpps, Louisiana
Coordinates32°38′12″N 91°24′41″W / 32.63667°N 91.41139°W / 32.63667; -91.41139Coordinates: 32°38′12″N 91°24′41″W / 32.63667°N 91.41139°W / 32.63667; -91.41139
Area910.85 acres (368.61 ha)[1]
AuthorizedOctober 31, 1988 (1988-October-31)
Governing bodyLouisiana Office of State Parks
WebsitePoverty Point National Monument
Official nameMonumental Earthworks of Poverty Point
TypeCultural
Criteriaiii
Designated2014 (38th session)
Reference no.1435
State PartyUnited States
RegionEurope and North America

Poverty Point State Historical Site (French: Pointe de Pauvreté; 16 WC 5) is a prehistoric earthwork constructed by the Poverty Point culture. The Poverty Point site is located in present-day northeastern Louisiana though evidence of the Poverty Point culture extends throughout much of the Southeastern Woodlands. The culture extended 100 miles (160 km) across the Mississippi Delta and south to the Gulf Coast. The Poverty Point site has been designated as a U.S. National Monument, a U.S. National Historic Landmark, and UNESCO World Heritage Site.[2] Located in the Southern United States, the site is 15.5 miles (24.9 km) from the current flow of the Mississippi River,[3] and is situated on the edge of Macon Ridge, near the village of Epps in West Carroll Parish, Louisiana.

The Poverty Point site contains earthen ridges and mounds, built by indigenous people between 1700 and 1100 BC during the Late Archaic period in North America.[4] Archaeologists have proposed a variety of possible functions for the site including as a settlement, a trading center, and/or a ceremonial religious complex.

The 402-acre (163 ha) property now operated as the Poverty Point State Historic Site[5] contains "the largest and most complex Late Archaic earthwork occupation and ceremonial site yet found in North America".[6] Euroamericans described the site in the 19th century. Poverty Point has been the focus of professional archaeological excavations since the 1950s. The earthworks are named after a 19th century plantation on the property.

  1. ^ "Listing of acreage as of December 31, 2011". Land Resource Division, National Park Service. Retrieved 2012-05-14.
  2. ^ Greg Hilburn. "A first for Louisiana: Poverty Point selected as World Heritage site". Monroe News-Star. Archived from the original on June 22, 2014. Retrieved June 23, 2014.
  3. ^ Milner, George R. (2004). The Moundbuilders: Ancient Peoples of Eastern North America. London: Thames & Hudson Ltd.
  4. ^ U.S. Department of the Interior (2013). The Monumental Earthworks of Poverty Point (PDF). Nomination to the World Heritage List by the United States of America. p. 106.
  5. ^ U.S. Department of the Interior (2013). Monumental Earthworks of Poverty Point. Nomination to the World Heritage List by the United States of America. p. 106.
  6. ^ "Poverty Point" Archived 2015-04-29 at the Wayback Machine, National Historic Landmarks Program, National Park Service

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  • Epps, Louisiana

    Village in Louisiana, United States

  • Poverty Point

    Prehistoric site of the Poverty Point culture in northeastern Louisiana, United States

  • Mitchiner, Louisiana

    Unincorporated community in Louisiana, United States

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