Monday, May 11, 2009
The history of St. Louis is built on mounds. Thousands of burial mounds which have not survived modern earth movers littered the area, once giving St. Louis the nickname " Mound City". Many of these mounds are thought to have been built right around 1000 years ago by a network of native americans known as the the Hopewell Culture. Most notable of these are the Cahokia Mounds just east of St. Louis.
"lower intelligence scores, poor attention levels; hearing, speech and language problems; reading
disabilities; reduced motor skills and poor hand-eye coordination."
Now it begins to make some sense.
While I can't help feeling a little romantic about these mining relics, I also feel a bit betrayed. A brief look back puts me living at one point or another in Desloge, Park Hills, Doe Run, and Old Mines, all lead mining sites Old Mines named for being the eldest in Missouri, mined in the 1720s. And once in Pevely which borders the town Herculaneum, the infamous site of the state's smelting facilities, evacuated several years back as lead levels became dangerously high.
As a child no one ever told us this. I really had no idea the mounds had anything to do with mining. I thought it had something to do with the adjacent glass factory, which as it turns out was built to make use of it.
So next time you ask me a question and I sing the answer back to you to the tune of the Gilligan theme, or I say something a little too loud and then repeat it back to myself as I walk away, I'm not trying to be a dick. I've just got enough lead coursing through my veins to make me legally retarded.