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Field Trip to Trempealeau Mounds and Perrot State Park Museum

Last year, the Friends of Aztalan State Park, sponsored a field trip to Trempealeau, Wisconsin on the Mississippi River to view the amazing mounds and other ancient features associated with the Mississippian civilization. It proved so interesting that we are revisiting Trempealeau this year, particularly since a new trail and interpretive exhibits have been installed since our last visit, and there has been new insights provided by on-going archaeological work.

The Mississippians who established Aztalan also builtlarge platformmounds on a high hill in the center of Trempealeau - the only ones known for Wisconsin outside of Aztalan. Until recently the Mississippian mounds had been a mystery but continuing archaeological excavations have revealed a short-lived Mississippian settlement or colony below the mounds and these people came here directly the Cahokia area in southern Illinois even before the Mississippians appeared at Aztalan.  What brought them to this place is unknown but archaeologists investigating the village speculate that the nearby Trempealeau Mt., occupying an island in the Mississippi River, might have been perceived as aplace of great supernatural power as it was for the much later Ho-Chunk people that lived in this area.

The Friends have scheduled a tour with archaeologist Robert Boszhardt, who has been leading the recent excavations at Trempealeau, for afternoon of Sunday September 24.  Trempealeau is located just north of La Crosse,  and is about a 2 hour drive from Madison. We will arrange van(s) or a bus transportation depending on the number of people with two pick up points: the DNR headquarters at the Old Depot at Lake Mills at 8:00 AM, and the Dutch Mills Park and Ride in Madison at 8:40 AM. We will have lunch at the Trempealeau Hotel (great hamburgers) overlooking the Mississippi River and then tour the Trempealeau mounds and colony area well as nearby Perrot State Park that has new displays on the archaeology of the area. We expect depart to head home 4:00 PM or so.

The cost of the field trip is $30 that will cover transportation and other expenses.  Those wishing to attend should register with Bob Birmingham at 608-516-3421 or by September 20 and Bob will supply other details. You can also send your payment online at

Those wishing to read about the recent Trempealeau discoveries beforehand can find information in a short book entitled Beneath your Feet: Archaeology at Trempealeau that can be ordered from, and an online La Crosse Tribune article

Don't miss this exciting opportunitythat will shed light on the occupation of ancient Aztalan itself.