Actor Wes Studi (Dances With Wolves, Geronimo, Last of the Mohicans) is our host for an insightful, cross-continent look at the Native peoples who inhabited the United States and Canada before the coming of the first Europeans. This series is a comprehensive summary of both the cultures and prehistoric events that shaped Ancient America from the end of the last ice age to the first encounters with European explorers. Four 60-minute programs:

Journey to the top of the Bighorn Range and to the ancient Medicine Wheel, used as a ceremonial site and astronomical observatory. Discover how the Native Americans, like early sea explorers, used the stars to navigate the vast plains. Travel back to when western deserts were underwater and Native Americans hunted using duck decoys, to when Plains Indians, among the most inventive of all Native Americans, used smoke signals to send messages over great distances and created sign language to conduct inter-tribal trade.

Investigate mysterious Effigy Mounds and the ancient structure called Woodhenge, similar to England's Stonehenge, which was used to predict celestial events. Learn about Poverty Point, which 3,000 years ago became the first planned city in the present-day United States. Uncover artifacts, ancient cities, and the incredible 100 foot high earthen pyramids of Monk's Mound, the centerpiece of Mississippian society which took 300 years to build!

Explore the cliff dwellings of Mesa Verde. Journey back in time to the prehistoric metropolis of Chaco Canyon, with its vast network of roads and intriguing astronomical observations. Marvel at the art, artifacts, and extensive ruins left behind by the ancestral Puebloans, Hohokam, and other fascinating people who once inhabited the Southwest. Never-before-filmed sites change our perceptions of these advanced, mysterious cultures. Stunning photography and effects recreate the ancient Southwest.

This video focuses on the Pacific Northwest of North America and the very long pre-Columbian histories that are found there. It explores the origins of the totem pole and the complex designs of Northwest Coast art. Viewers learn about legends that may be among the oldest known histories on earth including record of the eruption of Mt. Mazama that occurred approximately 7,000 years ago. Strange discoveries such as the startling presence of Ming Dynasty porcelains unearthed in prehistoric village sites are also cited. This is a detailed overview of the surprising wealth and sophistication of Pacific Northwest Native societies.

#11900/0365240 minutes1999Grades 7 to A $189.95 Streaming Available

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