The Great Serpent Mound and the Milky Way

October 21, 2022

Archaeologist Brad Lepper wrote an article about the influence of the Milky Way on the construction of Serpent Mound in Ohio for a special forum on cosmic influences on ancient construction. Serpent Mound represents the Great Serpent, Lord of the Underworld. In indigenous cultures, the Great Serpent is represented by the Milky Way.

Ohio has two effigy mounds, the Serpent Mound and the “Alligator” mound which represents the Underwater Panther. Wisonsin has thousands of effigy mounds built between 700-1150 CE by the Effigy Mound Culture.

Brad and his colleagues believe Serpent Mound is three separate mounds representing two figures, the Great Serpent and First Woman who is represented as a wishbone shaped mound with an oval earthwork representing her spread legs and the jaws of the Serpent. The oval is The First Woman’s womb which is the portal through which the Sun sets in the evening.

First Woman mated with the Great Serpent and acquired the Great Serpent’s powers of regeneration which she used to create all life.

Serpent Mound was built in 1100 CE by the Fort Ancient Culture who were also influenced by the Mississippian civilization centered at the site of Cahokia in Illinois

Brad Lepper is the Senior Archaeologist for the Ohio History Connection’s World Heritage Program

The forum articles are published in the Journal of Skyscape Archaeology

Columbus Dispatch has Brad’s research here:

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