Monongahela Culture

From Ohio History Central

A.D. 1000 to 1650

The "Monongahela culture" is a so-called "Late Prehistoric" group -- an archaeological convenience term, not a designation of primitivism -- that was thought occupied portions of far eastern Ohio and western Pennsylvania. The term culture, here, and in archaeological usage, refers more to shared systems of artifact construction and technology than it does to self-recognized groupings of people. The " Monongahela culture" is archaeologically distinguished from other Late Prehistoric societies mainly by distinctive kinds of pottery. Monongahela culture villages were made up of clusters of houses surrounded by a circular or oval pallisade. Communities consisted of between 100 to 150 people.

The Monongahela culture is named for the Monongahela River of West Virginia and western Pennsylvania. This valley was the heartland for this culture and its related artifacts.

See Also


  1. Lepper, Bradley T. Ohio Archaeology: An Illustrated Chronicle of Ohio's Ancient American Indian Cultures. Wilmington, Ohio, Orange Frazer Press, 2005.