Fort Ancient Culture – Successor of Hopewell Tradition Cultures and Last North American Indian Culture 1000 AD – 1750 AD

The Fort Ancient Culture developed near Ohio River around 1000 AD. It remained in existence till 1750 AD. Many of the archaeological sites regarding this culture are found in Ohio, Kentucky, Indiana and West Virginia. It is believed that these people mostly grow maize and had well established villages. They also built ceremonial mounds and temples.

Fort Ancient, a bird-view

Fort Ancient, a bird-view

The Fort ancient culture was contemporary of Mississippian culture. Both the cultures vanished almost at the same time. The fort ancient people have ancestral connections with the Hopewell People who lived in Ohio region around 500 AD.


The fort ancient people made precise weapons and tools. Most of the tools and weapon were made from bone or stone. Shells were used to make decorative items. They also made very accurate bow and arrow. The arrowheads and knives were triangular in shape. They also built various agricultural tools like hoes, mussel shells and axes. These tools were employed in cultivating land and falling trees. The stone tools were mostly locally made as fort ancient people had no trade links with other cultures.

Fort Ancient Artifact – Pots

Fort Ancient Artifact – Face


The fort ancient people used to grow the three sister crops which are maize squash and beans. This same crop culture created various problems for these people. They had hardly any different diet and repetition of same diet decreased their age, immunity and further resulted in disease like arthritis.


They mostly hunted animals like turkey, black bear, white tail dear, elk etc. They also did fishing. There were many ponds in nearby forest especially in the northern regions which ensured huge supply of fish throughout the year. It is also suggested they use to keep hens in pen and feed them.

Fort Ancient Site

It is one of the largest prehistoric settlements of America which covered almost 100 acre land. It was built by the Ohio Hopewellian people who lived in that area around 500 AD.

Fort Ancient Map

The site was initially thought to be a fort though later such assumption was dismissed. It was a ceremonial structure. It is presently located in Warren County Ohio.

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