It's construction required the moving of 60,000 tons of dirt, carried in baskets, without the use of wheel or horse. (It probably took 100 years to complete.)
Excavators have found skeletons, shells, ornaments, stone tools, etc. It is believed that people of rank were buried here.
These mounds, as well as being burial sites, were also used as centers of worship. More than three hundred mounds remain in West Virginia today.
Before we leave Moundsville, there's one more place that is a must. It's the
West Virginia Penitentiary
This neo-Gothic stone structure was built in 1866, and was "not a nice place to be", in the words of a former prison guard who now guides tours thru the damp, musty interior of the prison. At times, there were as many as 2,357 prisoners living here at one time, sometimes two or three to a five by seven foot cell.
The prison was closed in 1995.
During the tour, you will see some pin-up calendars the inmates used..I'm sure to mark off their time. Also on the tour is "Old Sparky", the electric chair used before West Virginia banned capital punishment.
As we leave this establishment, I'm sure we will all be feeling a sense of relief at knowing that we do not have to spend the night here. Whew!!!