Aztalan State Park

the main pyramid at Aztalan State Park

This park is an archaeological site, the location (South of I-94, near Lake Mills) of a 12th century Indian village.


The people who settled Aztalan built large, flat-topped pyramidal mounds and a stockade around their village. They hunted, fished, and farmed on the floodplain of the Crawfish River. It represents an important northern extension of the Cahokia phase of the Middle Mississippi Culture. It was also designated a National Historic Landmark in 1964 and added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1966. Aztalan State Park is the site of a ceremonial and residential Native American town established in 1100 AD (approximately). This site has provided insights into ancient agriculture and gardening and may have been the first place that agriculture was practiced in Wisconsin. Effigy mounds from the Woodland culture are found on the east side of the Crawfish at Aztalan. Aztalan was the northern outpost of a group of Native Americans called the Middle Mississippian Tradition. Many artifacts belonging to the local people, called Woodland, are also present.

Travel Wisconsin tourists will find many remnants of the Middle Mississippian Tradition at Aztalan State Park, the most prominent of which are the three platform mounds located at the site's heart. The largest of the mounds may have been a storage facility for the entire Aztalan village, protecting food like corn from the outside elements. The largest mound is the one in the southwest corner of the stockade; one almost as large is located in the northwest corner. The smallest of the three is along the east side of the settlement, near the Crawfish River (labeled "West Branch of Rock River" on the plates). The picturesque Rock River winds through the village, setting the scene for fishing and boating excursions. Also just south of Johnson Creek, in Bicentennial Park, is a safe and enjoyable dog park.

The hill in the southeast corner is a natural gravel knoll, not built by the inhabitants. The Aztalan people built three earthen pyramids and a protective stockade complete with guard towers. Two of the pyramids and sections of the stockade are reconstructed. Investigate the legend of the underwater pyramids, Glacial Heritage area, Legendary Lake Mills, Black Hawk’s footsteps, Palmyra, Waterloo, Watertown and Whitewater plus some of the smaller towns and hamlets in the area and know the History of Aztalan.

Open daily April through October, the park offers picnic areas, Frisbee toss, impromptu ball games, hiking trails, fishing, oak woods, canoe, boat, and catch northern pike, catfish, and walleye in the Crawfish River, Aztalan Ceramics, Aztalan Museum, operated by the Lake Mills-Aztalan Historical Society, Inc. is just north of the park, site tours by archaeologists who have worked at Aztalan, an afternoon of enjoying the park and its past. The staff that managed the nearby Glacial Drumlin State Trail manages this park. Sledding, skiing and snowboarding are prohibited on the Indian mounds at Aztalan state park.

Map and Area Route Of Aztalan State Park
Friends of the Aztalan State Park

Camping:
Private Campgrounds and Camping Reservations at Sandhill Station State Campground is adjacent to the Lake Mills Wildlife Area and one mile from the Glacial Drumlin Trail Headquarters. The rustic walk/bike-in campground in an oak grove has a hiking trail, fishing, and access to the Glacial Drumlin Trail. Also Kettle Moraine State Forest, Southern Unit in far southeastern Jefferson County also has camping facilities.

Direction:
Aztalan State Park in the City of Lake Mills - Jefferson County (Southeast WI).

Location

Aztalan State Park
c/o Glacial Drumlin State Trail, 1213 S. Main Street
Lake Mills, WI 53551
United States
Phone: 
(920) 648-8774
Phone: 
Call Bob Birmingham at (608) 241-4958 or email: birmi@sbcglobal.net


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