Many people consider Appalachia as a mysterious region. Defining the Appalachian region has continued to stump modern scholars year after year. Today, there are still questions to what areas Appalachia actually lies in. North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Alabama, Tennessee, Virginia, West Virginia, Pennsylvania, Maryland, and Kentucky all hold a piece of the Appalachian region. The debate for the region boundaries will no doubt proceed, but no one can deny the power that lies in this land. The alluring Appalachian region is famous for its rich and diverse culture, consisting of mysterious boundaries, an interesting past, war-stained grounds, and people who have triumphed over hardships and shaped this land and culture into a territory of wonder and beauty.
Since the Appalachian region is abundant in wildlife and plant life, it provides all the necessities for living. The early settlers of Appalachia, the North American Indians, thrived in this environment. There are five cultural periods during Indian time considered by archeologists.
"1) The Paleo-Indian Period 2) The Archaic Period 3) The Woodland Tradition 4) The Mississippian Period and 5) The Historic Era. Appalachia was occupied by Indian societies at least as early as the Archaic Period (Drake 4).
The Woodland Tradition is considered to be the most indigenous culture of Indian times. Both the Adena and Hopewell cultures are roots from the Woodland Tradition. The Adena culture dwelled mainly in Ohio, West Virginia, and Kentucky. They were terrific farmers and made homes from saplings and bark. The Adena culture built burial mounds and sometimes surrounded their communities with earthen walls. The Hopewell culture was the better of the two at mound building, and created quite a reputation for this reason. Their mounds have been highly esteemed amongst men for generations. "The Hopewell mounds are their most impressive ruin. Indeed, these pe