A mound is a heaped pile of earth, sand, rocks, or debris. Most mounds are earthen formations such as hills and mountains if they appear artificial. A mound may be any rounded area of topographically higher elevation on any surface. Artificial mounds have been created for a variety of reasons throughout history, including ceremonial and commemorative purposes. In the archaeology of the United States and Canada, a mound is a deliberately constructed elevated earthen structure or earthwork, intended for a range of potential uses. In European and Asian archaeology, the word "tumulus" may be used as a synonym for an artificial hill if the hill is related to particular burial customs. While the term "mound" may be applied to historic constructions, most mounds in the United States are pre-Columbian earthworks, built by Native American peoples. Native Americans built a variety of mounds, including flat-topped pyramids or cones known as platform mounds, rounded cones, ridge or loaf-shaped mounds; some mounds took such as the outline of cosmologically significant animals.
These are known as effigy mounds. Some mounds, such as a few in Wisconsin, have rock formations, or petroforms within them, on them, or near them. While these mounds are not as famous as burial mounds, like their European analogs, Native American mounds have a variety of other uses. While some prehistoric cultures, like the Adena culture, used mounds preferentially for burial, others used mounds for other ritual and sacred acts, as well as for secular functions; the platform mounds of the Mississippian culture, for example, may have supported temples, the houses of chiefs, council houses, may have acted as a platform for public speaking. Other mounds would have been part of defensive walls to protect a certain area; the Hopewell culture used mounds as markers of complex astronomical alignments related to ceremonies. Mounds and related earthworks are the only significant monumental construction in pre-Columbian Eastern and Central North America. Mounds are given different names depending on, they can be located all across the world in spots such as Asia and the Americas.
"Mound builders" have more been associated with the mounds in the Americas. They all have different meanings and sometimes are constructed as animals and can be seen from aerial views. Kankali Tila is a famous mound located at Mathura in the Indian state of Uttar Pradesh. A Jain stupa was excavated here in 1890-91 by Dr. Fuhrer. Mound, as a technical term in archaeology, is not in favor in the rest of the world. More specific local terminology is preferred, each of these terms has its own article. Cairn Chambered cairn Effigy mound Kofun Platform mound Subglacial mound Tell Tumulus Bank barrow Bell barrow Bowl barrow Chambered long barrow Kurgan Long barrow Oval barrow List of burial mounds in the United States Fort Ancient Kofun period Kurgan hypothesis Mississippian Period Neolithic Europe Olmec La Venta San Jose Mogote Petroform Pyramid Prehistoric Britain Stupa Woodland Period Crystal River Archaeological State Park ZigguratAnimalsMound-building termites The dictionary definition of mound at Wiktionary "Mound".
Encyclopædia Britannica. 18. 1911
The Choctawhatchee River is a 141-mile-long river in the southern United States, flowing through southeast Alabama and the Panhandle of Florida before emptying into Choctawhatchee Bay in Okaloosa and Walton counties. The river, the bay and their adjacent watersheds collectively drain 5,350 square miles; the Choctawhatchee originates as two separate forks in Alabama. The unified river flows southwest through Dale and Geneva counties into Florida, collecting tributaries along the way: the Little Choctawhatchee River in Dale County, the Pea River near Geneva, it flows south into Florida, terminating at Choctawhatchee Bay. Other Alabama tributaries are Tight Eye Creek. Once in Florida, the river continues southwesterly through Holmes and Bay counties until reaching its namesake bay. Major tributaries in Florida include Holmes, Sandy, Pine Log, Seven Run and Bruce creeks. Choctawhatchee Bay empties into the Gulf of Mexico at East Pass near Florida; the Choctawhatchee contains several species of fish, including several species of sunfish, channel catfish and spotted bass.
Gulf Sturgeon use the river for spawning activities. S. Fish and Wildlife Service collected 522 different sturgeon during a study conducted in October and November 2008. Scientists report sighting sturgeon as far upriver as Newton; as as the 1920s, sturgeon fishing was a thriving industry in Geneva, with many large fish being caught, packed in barrels, shipped north. Twenty-one Aquatic Snails and Freshwater Mussel species exist in the Choctawhatchee, with one of the former and two of the latter found only in this particular river. Researchers from Auburn University and the University of Windsor, reported possible sightings in 2005 and 2006 of ivory-billed woodpeckers along the Choctawhatchee River.70% of the Choctawhatchee's watershed is forested. Trees found along the Choctawhatchee include southern pine, magnolia, laurel oak, Florida maple and American holly; the lower Choctawhatchee contains "pitcher-plant bog" and other swamp habitat, including cypress trees draped with Spanish moss. Alligators have been seen in the river's lower reaches.
The Choctawhatchee has little industry along its banks. The Choctawhatchee and Yellow Rivers Watershed Management District was instrumental in getting a grant to place gravel on many county roads, which reduced the average turbidity. Illegal dumping of household garbage and animal carcasses is a problem, but not enough of one to affect water quality in the Alabama portion of the river, where water quality is described as "good to good"; this changes somewhat in the Florida section of the river, due to the presence of several wastewater treatment plants, animal-waste sites and erosion. Three of the river's Florida tributaries are described as "polluted" with "waste water effluent"; the Choctawhatchee has not always been on good behavior, having flooded Geneva in the so-called "Lincoln Freshet" of 1865, the Hoover Flood of 1929. The Lincoln Freshet induced many of the townspeople to move to higher ground a half-mile north, while the Hoover Flood swept away most of the remnants of Old Town Geneva.
Damage from subsequent floods has been limited by a WPA-project levee. Areas outside the levee did not fare so well, were purchased by FEMA after three floods during the 1990s; the March 1990 flood caused over $88 million in damages. A natural inland waterway connects Choctawhatchee Bay to Pensacola Bay, making it possible for keelboats and steamboats to navigate between Pensacola and Geneva, as far upstream as Newton. Before that, the river was a supply route and avenue of commerce for thousands of years to the indigenous peoples of the area. Sam Story known as Timpoochee Kinnard, was chief of a band of Euchee Indians in the early 19th century in present-day Walton County, they occupied lands to the west of the Choctawhatchee River. His parents were a Yuchi woman, whose name is not known, Timothy Kinnard, a white man of Scottish descent, who had come to the area as a trader. According to the matrilineal system of the Yuchi, Sam was considered born to his mother's people and he was raised as Yuchi.
The chief became a well-known figure in the Florida Panhandle and was respected by whites. Following the United States' acquisition of this territory in 1821 from Spain, European Americans entered the panhandle in greater numbers, encroaching on Euchee and Creek territory. In 1814 Andrew Jackson built a stockade called the "Block House" at the confluence of the East and West forks of the Chocktawhatchee, near Newton. European-American settlers used the river in their time, from the years of the earliest land patents around Geneva until the late 1930s; the Bloomer, a 130-ton side-wheeler with high-pressure engines, navigated the route between Geneva and Pensacola in 1857, as did the Brooklyn, a steamboat built in Geneva. During the American Civil War, the Confederate steamboat Bloomer was the object of an 1862 raid by 25 Union soldiers of the 91st New York State Volunteers, who were stationed at Fort Pickens near Pensacola; this attack was led by Lt. James H. Stewart, assisted by Acting Master Elias D. Bruner, of the USS Charlotte, along with Acting Ensign Edward Crissey.
Hammock is a term used in the southeastern United States for stands of trees hardwood, that form an ecological island in a contrasting ecosystem. Hammocks grow on elevated areas just a few inches high, surrounded by wetlands that are too wet to support them; the term hammock is applied to stands of hardwood trees growing on slopes between wetlands and drier uplands supporting a mixed or coniferous forest. Types of hammocks found in the United States include tropical hardwood hammocks, temperate hardwood hammocks, maritime or coastal hammocks. Hammocks are often classified as hydric, mesic or xeric; the types are not exclusive, but grade into each other. Unlike many ecosystems of the coastal plain of the southeastern United States, hammocks are not tolerant of fire. Hammocks tend to occur in locations where fire is not common, or where there is some protection from fire in neighboring ecosystems. Hammocks have begun developing in historic times in areas where fire has been suppressed through human intervention, or where elevations above wetlands have been created by dredging, mining and causeway building, other human activities.
On the other hand, many hammocks have been destroyed by development, as they occur on higher land in desirable locations, such as barrier islands and other waterfront locations. The etymology of the term "hammock" is obscure. Dictionaries give it as an archaic form of "hummock". "Hammock" is first attested in English in the 1550s as a nautical term for a tree-covered island seen on the horizon. "Hammock" is used to refer to stands of hardwood trees on the coastal plain from North Carolina to Mississippi. Types of hammock described in the literature include: In the United States, tropical hardwood hammocks are found in southern Florida. Sub-types of hammocks in southern Florida include rockland hammocks on the Miami Rock Ridge and in the Big Cypress National Preserve, Keys rockland hammocks in the Florida Keys, coastal berm hammocks in the Florida Keys and along the north shore of Florida Bay, tree island hammocks in the Everglades, shell mound hammocks, coastal rock barren hammocks in the Florida Keys, sinkhole hammocks on the Miami Rock Ridge.
The trees forming the canopy of the southernmost tropical hardwood hammocks in Florida are all West Indian species. The southern live oak is the only temperate hardwood species to appear in such hammocks. Hammocks along the east coast of Florida as far north as Cape Canaveral, along the west coast of Florida as far north as the mouth of the Manatee River on Tampa Bay, include West Indian species as canopy trees, but with increasing numbers of temperate species with increasing latitude, so that tropical hardwood hammocks grade into temperate hardwood hammocks; the tree island hammocks in the Everglades appear as teardrop-shaped islands shaped by the flow of water in the middle of the slough. Many tropical species such as mahogany, gumbo limbo, cocoplum grow alongside the more familiar temperate species of southern live oak, red maple, hackberry. Maritime hammocks known as maritime forests or coastal hammocks, are found on stable sand dunes away from the beach on barrier islands, on small islands in salt marshes.
They are found all along the Atlantic Gulf Coast of the United States. Some authorities classify coastal hammocks as hydric hammocks. Temperate hardwood hammocks are narrow bands of broadleaf forest that occur on the coastal plain of the southeastern United States. In most of the southeast, including the Florida panhandle, the trees in temperate hardwood hammocks are evergreen. Hardwood hammocks in northeastern Florida have a mixture of deciduous and evergreen trees, hardwood hammocks in southern Florida north of the Everglades have a mixture of evergreen and tropical trees. Hydric hammocks known as low hammocks, wetland hardwood hammocks, or lowland oak hammocks, grow on soils that are poorly drained or that have high water tables, subject to occasional flooding, they are found on gentle slopes just above swamps, marshes or wet prairies. Hydric hammocks are found in scattered locations in Florida north of Lake Okeechobee, with concentrations along the upper St. Johns River, the Atlantic coast of northeastern Florida, along the Big Bend section of the Gulf Coast of Florida, from Aripeka to St. Marks.
Mesic hammocks are hammocks of the southeastern United States coasts and all of peninsular Florida which grow on soils that are flooded. The canopy of mesic hammocks consists of evergreen hardwoods and cabbage palms; the southern live oak is the most common tree in mesic hammocks. Other trees found in mesic hammocks include southern magnolia, pignut hickory, water oak, laurel oak; some of those trees are less frequent or absent in southern Florida, where tropical species, such as gumbo limbo and satinleaf, may be found. Slash pines and loblolly pines are found in many mesic hammocks; the soil in mesic hammocks is well-drained and flooded, but remains moist due to the shade of the canopy, the heavy leaf litter that occurs in them. Xeric hammocks known as xeric forests or sand hammocks, grow on well-drained sandy soil, such as old sand dunes, where there is some protection from fire. Xeric hammocks saw palmetto. Xeric hammocks may develop from sandhill communities. Scrub-derived hammocks include myrtle oak and Chapman's
The Aucilla River rises in Brooks County, Georgia, USA, close to Thomasville, passes through the Big Bend region of Florida, emptying into the Gulf of Mexico at Apalachee Bay. Some early maps have it called the Ocilla River; the river has a drainage basin of 747 square miles. Tributaries include the Little Wacissa Rivers. In Florida, the Aucilla River forms the eastern border of Jefferson County, separating it from Madison County on the northern part, from Taylor County to the south. During the first Spanish period in Florida the Aucilla River was the boundary between the Apalachee people and the Timucua-speaking Yustaga people; the name "Aucilla" refers to an old Timucua village. The Aucilla River flows across a karst landscape, disappearing underground and reappearing, first at Howell Sinks near Boston and approximately 30 times in the area known as the Aucilla River Sinks on the lower part of the river. Between the Florida-Georgia State line and U. S. Highway 90 the river flows through an area of springs and marshes without a main channel.
From U. S. 90 to Lamont the river flows in a steep-sided valley with whitewater rapids. The Aucilla River Sinks, where many segments of the river are underground, starts near Lamont and runs to where the Wacissa River joins the Aucilla; the final few miles of the Aucilla below the mouth of the Wacissa flows over a broad floodplain. Although the Wacissa River is the largest tributary of the Aucilla River, it breaks into a number of braided channels before reaching the Aucilla. In the first half of the 19th Century cotton growers of Jefferson and Madison Counties wanted to carry their cotton to sea ports on the coast, but the intermittent underground segments of the Aucilla River and the narrow and shallow braided channels of the lower Wacissa did not permit the passage of barges; the Wacissa and Aucilla Navigation Company was chartered in 1831 to dig a canal from the navigable portion of the Wacissa to below Nuttall Rise, where the Aucilla returns above ground for the last time before reaching the Gulf of Mexico.
Construction of the canal did not start until 1851. Slaves from local plantations were hired from their owners to dig the canal, cut through limestone. Work on the canal was halted in 1856, while parts of the canal were still too shallow for loaded barges. By that time, railroads had reached the plantation country, removing the urgency of the need for the canal. In the 21st Century a proposal to rename the Slave Canal proved to be unpopular, failed; the Aucilla River is a rich source of late Pleistocene and early Holocene animal bones and human artifacts. Close to 40 underwater archaeological sites have been identified in the river; the Florida Museum of Natural History's Aucilla River Prehistory Project studied several of the sites for 15 years, ending in 1998. The Page/Ladson site, examined again in 2012-2014 by a group sponsored by the Center for the Study of First Americans, is one of the best documented and earliest of pre-Clovis culture sites in North America; as of 2006, the Sloth Hole site was "believed to be one of the three oldest Clovis sites in the Americas."
More than half of the "academically known worked ivory in the New World" has been collected from Sloth Hole. The Aucilla River Prehistory Project extended its studies to include the ancient channel of the Aucilla River, submerged by the rise in sea level since the late Pleistocene Epoch. Two important sites have been found in the ancient channel of the Aucilla River that are now underwater in Apalachee Bay, the J&J Hunt and Ontolo sites. List of fossil sites South Atlantic-Gulf Water Resource Region Media related to Aucilla River at Wikimedia Commons Balfour, R. C. 2002. In Search of the Aucilla. Colson Printing Company, Valdosta, GA. Balsillie, J. H. G. H. Means, J. S. Dunbar. 2006. The Ryan/Harley site: Sedimentology of an inundated Paleoindian site in north Florida. Geoarchaeology 21:363-391. Dunbar, J. S. 2006. Pleistocene-Holocene Climate Change: Chronostratigraphy and Geoclimate of the Southeast United States, Chapter 5. Pages 103-158 in S. D. Webb, ed. First Floridians and Last Mastodons: the Page-Ladson Site on the Aucilla River.
Springer Press, The Netherlands. Dunbar, J. S. C. A. Hemmings, P. K. Vojnovski, S. D. Webb, W. Stanton. 2005. The Ryan/Harley Site 8Je1004: A Suwannee Point Site In The Wacissa River, North Florida. Pages 81–96 in R. Bonnichsen, B. T. Lepper, D. J. Stanford, M. R. Waters, eds. Paleoamerican origins: beyond Clovis. Center for the Study of the First Americans, Texas A&M University Press, College Station, TX. Dunbar, J. S. S. D. Webb, M. K. Faught. 1988. Page/Ladson: An Underwater Paleo-Indian Site in Northwestern Florida. Florida Anthropologist 41:442-452. Fisher, D. C. and D. L. Fox. 2006. Five Years in the Life of an Aucilla River Mastodon. Pages 343-377 in S. D. Webb, ed. First Floridians and Last Mastodons: the Page-Ladson Site on the Aucilla River. Springer, the Netherlands. Hoppe, K. A. and P. Koch. 2006. The Biogeochemistry of the Aucilla River Fauna, Chapter 13. Pages 379-401 in S. D. Webb, ed. First Floridians and Last Mastodons: the Page-Ladson Site on the Aucilla River. Springer Press, The Netherlands.
Hoppe, K. A. and P. L. Koch. 2007. Reconstructing the migration patterns of late Pleistocene mammals from northern Florida, USA. Quaternary Research 68:347-352. Newsom, L. A. and M. Mihlbachler. 2006. Mastodons Diet Foraging Patterns Based on Analysis of Dung Deposits, Chapter 10. Pages 263-331 in S. D. Webb, ed. First Floridians and Last Mastodons: the Page-Ladson Site on the Aucilla River. Springer Press, The Netherlands. Newsom, L. A. 2006. Paleoenvironmental A
The Apalachicola River is a river 112 mi long in the state of Florida. The river's large watershed, known as the ACF River Basin, drains an area of 19,500 square miles into the Gulf of Mexico; the distance to its farthest head waters in northeast Georgia is 500 miles. Its name comes from the Apalachicola people; the river is formed on the state line between Florida and Georgia, near the town of Chattahoochee, Florida 60 miles northeast of Panama City, by the confluence of the Flint and Chattahoochee rivers. The actual confluence is contained within the Lake Seminole reservoir formed by the Jim Woodruff Dam, it flows south through the forests of the Florida Panhandle, past Bristol. In northern Gulf County, it receives the Chipola River from the west, it flows into an inlet of the Gulf of Mexico, at Apalachicola. The lower 30 mi of the river is surrounded except at the coast; the watershed contains nationally significant forests, with some of the highest biological diversity east of the Mississippi River and rivaling that of the Great Smoky Mountains.
It has significant areas of temperate deciduous forest as well as longleaf pine landscapes and flatwoods. Flooded areas have significant tracts of floodplain forest. All of these southeastern forest types were devastated by logging between 1880 and 1920, the Apalachiola contains some of the finest remaining examples of old growth forest in the southeast; the endangered tree species Florida Torreya is endemic to the region. The highest point within the watershed is Blood Mountain at 4,458 ft, near the headwaters of the Chattahoochee River. Where the river enters the Gulf of Mexico it creates a rich array of wetlands varying in salinity; these seagrass meadows. Over 200,000 acres of this diverse delta complex are included within the Apalachicola National Estuarine Research Reserve. There are dunes with coastal grasslands and interdunal swales; the basin of the Apalachicola River is noted for its tupelo honey, a high-quality monofloral honey, produced wherever the tupelo trees bloom in the southeastern United States.
In a good harvest year, the value of the tupelo honey crop produced by a group of specialized Florida beekeepers approaches $900,000 each spring. During Florida's British colonial period, the river formed the boundary between East Florida and West Florida. Geologically, the river links Gulf Coast with the Appalachian Mountains; some of the remaining important areas of natural habitat along the river include Apalachicola National Forest, Torreya State Park, The Nature Conservancy Apalachicola Bluffs and Ravines Preserve, Tates Hell State Forest, Apalachicola River Wildlife and Environmental Area, as well as the Apalachicola River Water Management Area. It has been suggested that this watershed should be nationally ranked and appreciated as being as significant as the Everglades or Great Smoky Mountains. To raise awareness about the importance of preserving the natural state of the river and its inhabitants, Florida film producer Elam Stoltzfus highlighted this system in a PBS documentary in 2006.
The river forms the boundary between the Eastern and Central time zones in Florida, until it reaches the Jackson River. Thereafter, the Jackson River, which flows to the Gulf of Mexico, is the time zone boundary. List of Florida rivers South Atlantic-Gulf Water Resource Region Voices of the Apalachicola White, P. S. S. P. Wilds, G. A. Thunhorst. 1998. Southeast. Pp. 255–314, In M. J. Mac, P. A. Opler, C. E. Puckett Haecker, P. D. Doran. "Status and Trends of the Nation’s Biological Resources". 2 vols. US Department of the Interior, US Geological Survey, Reston, VA. Boyce, S. G. and W. M. Martin. 1993. The future of the terrestrial communities of the southeastern United States. Pp. 339–366, In W. H. Martin, S. G. Boyce, A. C. Echternacht. Biodiversity of the Southeastern United States, Lowland Terrestrial Communities. Wiley, New York, NY. Light, H. M. M. R. Darst, J. W. Grubbs.. Aquatic habitats in relation to river flow in Florida. Washington, D. C.: U. S. Department of the Interior, U. S. Geological Survey. Florida State University: Apalachicola River Ecological Management Plan Apalachicola River Watershed – Florida DEP Apalachicola River Wildlife and Environmental Area Apalachicola Riverkeeper, an organization focused on the protection of the Apalachicola National Estuarine Research Reserve Apalachicola Bluffs and Ravines Preserve, a Nature Conservancy preserve Northwest Florida Water Management District U.
S. Army Corps of Engineers: Flint-Chatahoochee-Apalachicola basin U. S. Geological Survey Geographic Names Information System: Apalachicola River
The Kolomoki Mounds is one of the largest and earliest Woodland period earthwork mound complexes in the Southeastern United States and is the largest in Georgia. Constructed from 350CE to 600CE, the mound complex is located in southwest Georgia, in present-day Early County near the Chattahoochee River; the mounds were designated in 1964 as a National Historic Landmark in 1964. Seven of the eight mounds are protected as part of Kolomoki Mounds State Historic Park. Kolomoki Mounds State Park is an important archaeological site as well as a scenic recreational area. Kolomoki, covering some three hundred acres, is one of the larger preserved mound sites in the USA. In the early millennium of the Common Era, with its surrounding villages, burial mounds, ceremonial plaza, was a center of population and activity in North America; the eight visible mounds of earth in the park were built between 250-950 CE by peoples of the Swift Creek and Weeden Island cultures. These mounds include Georgia's oldest great temple mound.
As with other mound complexes, the people sited and built the earthworks according to a complex cosmology. Researchers have noted. For example, mounds A, D, E, which form the central axis of the site, align with the sun at the spring equinox. Mounds F and D form an alignment with the sun at the summer solstice. Soils at the Park are dark red sandy loams or loamy sands of the Americus and Red Bay series; some pale brown sands of the Troup series occur on the western shores of Kolomoki Lake, at the northern end of the lake is brown or dark gray alluvial loam of the Herod-Muckalee soil association. The Temple Mound measures 325 by 200 feet at the base. Research indicates that it would have taken over two million basket loads carried by individual workers, each holding one cubic foot of earth, to build this mound; the southern half of the mound is three feet higher and was the temple platform. From the top of the steps, most of the Kolomoki Archaeological Area can be viewed. 1,500 - 2,000 residents lived in a village of thatched houses that were built around the large plaza in the center of the complex.
It was a place for public ceremonial rituals, including games. Mound D is one of the eight visible mounds at the Kolomoki site, it is a conical mound, 20 feet high from the ground. It is centrally located at Kolomoki. Archeologists discovered the remains of ceremonial pottery here; the effigy pottery discovered was shaped in various animal and bird shapes, such as deer and owls. Mound D was constructed in each time increasing in size, it began as a square-platform mound, about 6 feet tall. This original platform mound was built from yellow clay. Sixty pottery vessels were placed on the east wall including the above effigy pottery. After many subsequent burials and the addition of more yellow clay in layers, the mound was shaped as a larger circular mound about 10 feet tall; these burials took place on the eastern side of the mound, the skulls face eastward, the direction of the rising sun for religious reasons. Burial objects made from iron and copper and pearl beads were included as ceremonial objects with the burials.
The entire mound was covered with red clay. The park's museum was built to incorporate part of an excavated mound; the museum features a film about how this mound was excavated. In March 1974, a thief entered the museum at the park and stole more than 129 ancient pots and effigies, numerous arrowheads, other treasures; every artifact on display was stolen. Several years many of the pieces were recovered by police and dealers in Miami and St. Augustine, Florida. But, with more than 70 relics still missing, the Georgia Department of Natural Resources has sought public help in recovering these artifacts. Archeologists believe the pots are somewhere in Georgia or Florida held by dealers or private collectors. Park Manager Matt Bruner said, These pieces are an important part of North American history and should be properly protected for future generations to study, they have significant meaning to the Native American people because many were used during burial ceremonies, plus they represent some of the finest craftsmanship of the Kolomoki culture.
He emphasized that the state is more interested in recovering the pots than prosecuting the people who have them. List of burial mounds in the United States List of National Historic Landmarks in Georgia National Register of Historic Places listings in Early County, Georgia "Kolomoki Mounds State Park", Georgia State Parks Kolomoki PDF website about missing artifacts "Kolomoki Mounds Historic Park", Explore Southern History "Kolomoki", New Georgia Encyclopedia The Kolomoki Indian Mounds historical marker "Kolomoki Mounds Archaeological Area", Georgia state historical marker "Kolomoki Mounds State Park", Georgia state historical marker
A river is a natural flowing watercourse freshwater, flowing towards an ocean, lake or another river. In some cases a river flows into the ground and becomes dry at the end of its course without reaching another body of water. Small rivers can be referred to using names such as stream, brook and rill. There are no official definitions for the generic term river as applied to geographic features, although in some countries or communities a stream is defined by its size. Many names for small rivers are specific to geographic location. Sometimes a river is defined as being larger than a creek, but not always: the language is vague. Rivers are part of the hydrological cycle. Potamology is the scientific study of rivers, while limnology is the study of inland waters in general. Most of the major cities of the world are situated on the banks of rivers, as they are, or were, used as a source of water, for obtaining food, for transport, as borders, as a defensive measure, as a source of hydropower to drive machinery, for bathing, as a means of disposing of waste.
A river begins at a source, follows a path called a course, ends at a mouth or mouths. The water in a river is confined to a channel, made up of a stream bed between banks. In larger rivers there is also a wider floodplain shaped by flood-waters over-topping the channel. Floodplains may be wide in relation to the size of the river channel; this distinction between river channel and floodplain can be blurred in urban areas where the floodplain of a river channel can become developed by housing and industry. Rivers can flow down mountains, through valleys or along plains, can create canyons or gorges; the term upriver refers to the direction towards the source of the river, i.e. against the direction of flow. The term downriver describes the direction towards the mouth of the river, in which the current flows; the term left bank refers to the left bank in the direction of right bank to the right. The river channel contains a single stream of water, but some rivers flow as several interconnecting streams of water, producing a braided river.
Extensive braided rivers are now found in only a few regions worldwide, such as the South Island of New Zealand. They occur on peneplains and some of the larger river deltas. Anastamosing rivers are quite rare, they have multiple sinuous channels carrying large volumes of sediment. There are rare cases of river bifurcation in which a river divides and the resultant flows ending in different seas. An example is the bifurcation of Nerodime River in Kosovo. A river flowing in its channel is a source of energy which acts on the river channel to change its shape and form. In 1757, the German hydrologist Albert Brahms empirically observed that the submerged weight of objects that may be carried away by a river is proportional to the sixth power of the river flow speed; this formulation is sometimes called Airy's law. Thus, if the speed of flow is doubled, the flow would dislodge objects with 64 times as much submerged weight. In mountainous torrential zones this can be seen as erosion channels through hard rocks and the creation of sands and gravels from the destruction of larger rocks.
A river valley, created from a U-shaped glaciated valley, can easily be identified by the V-shaped channel that it has carved. In the middle reaches where a river flows over flatter land, meanders may form through erosion of the river banks and deposition on the inside of bends. Sometimes the river will cut off a loop, shortening the channel and forming an oxbow lake or billabong. Rivers that carry large amounts of sediment may develop conspicuous deltas at their mouths. Rivers whose mouths are in saline tidal waters may form estuaries. Throughout the course of the river, the total volume of water transported downstream will be a combination of the free water flow together with a substantial volume flowing through sub-surface rocks and gravels that underlie the river and its floodplain. For many rivers in large valleys, this unseen component of flow may exceed the visible flow. Most but not all rivers flow on the surface. Subterranean rivers flow underground in caverns; such rivers are found in regions with limestone geologic formations.
Subglacial streams are the braided rivers that flow at the beds of glaciers and ice sheets, permitting meltwater to be discharged at the front of the glacier. Because of the gradient in pressure due to the overlying weight of the glacier, such streams can flow uphill. An intermittent river only flows and can be dry for several years at a time; these rivers are found in regions with limited or variable rainfall, or can occur because of geologic conditions such as a permeable river bed. Some ephemeral rivers flow during the summer months but not in the winter; such rivers are fed from chalk aquifers which recharge from winter rainfall. In England these rivers are called bournes and give their name to places such as Bournemouth and Eastbourne. In humid regions, the location where flow begins in the smallest tributary streams moves upstream in response to precipitation and downstream in its absence or when active summer vegetation diverts water for evapotrans