72 Oasis by Hermann Trappman


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Not only did the ancient people hunt the great animals of paleo-Florida, but they were successful in developing an entire culture based on that resource.

As the Wisconsin glaciation broke down, it flooded the Mississippi River with icy cold water. I imagine that during the spring and summer floods, the gray turbulent water swelled the river to 100 miles wide, choking it with tumbling ice. The ice carried silt and glacial debris down the Mississippi to be spilled into the Gulf of Mexico. That much cold freshwater must have had a powerful impact on the saltwater estuaries of the Gulf. Changing weather patterns may have added to the environmental stress.

Central Florida, circa 14,000 B.P.E.

Mastadon Kill

Map of North America duing the height of the Winsconsin glaciation.

Map of North America during the height of the Winsconsin Glaciation.

About 9,500 years ago, the weather changed again with sudden glacial spike called the Younger Dryas. It too had powerful effects. The hills of central Florida appear to be sand dunes formed by the winds that blew endlessly during this period.

The Mastadon Kill by Hermann Trappman ©Neily Trappman Studio

After a mighty beast like this mastadon was brought down, the women and children moved in to help butcher the animal. It was an exciting time for everyone. The hunt was followed by feasting.

The Prizes

A knee-bone made a good grinding tool for a woman’s kitchen. A boy removes  the liver from the the cavity of the carcass.

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