The Serpent Mound

Schiller Woods South Des Plaines River Rd

Northwest Portage Walking Museum
Written By Northwest Portage Walking Museum

If you've ever noticed the use of serpents in the Native American culture and design, there's a reason. The Serpent is a vastly important figure across many Native American tribal groups, which is reflected in the Serpent Mound. The design flows with the implied motion of the Serpent, a life form that weaves in and out of land and water, the physical and the spiritual.

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This proposed installation, created by Koasati artist Santiago X, is designed to display the intriguing and intricate past of Native Americans, along with the current thriving inter-tribal community of the area. Both past and present Native Americans are connected to the waterways, and view this relationship as a sacred link. There are ancient mounds located across the region, such as the Serpent Mound in Ohio, with significance to the religion and afterlife of the peoples who’ve formed them. The Serpent Mound on the Northwest Portage Walking Museum trail is an modern perspective on earthworks which pay reverence to ancestral effigy mounds and symbolize indigenous futurism representative of the unbreakable connections of Chicago’s present day to the past.

Take your time as you observe the proposed Mound. Contemplate the way of life that surrounds the natural to the connected peoples of the land, and reflect on your own story and history to the landscape of Chicago as you begin the journey along the Walking Museum trail.

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