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Curious City

Map Quest: Searching for Chicago’s ‘Lizard Mound’

Judy Pollock was reading a recent Curious City story about how Native Americans shaped Chicago’s history when she spotted an odd detail on one of the old maps in the story. The map depicted the Native American trails and villages that existed in Chicago in the early 1800s, before the city was officially incorporated.

It shows an odd, reptilian-looking shape, labelled the “Effigy Mound Lizard,” in the area that is known today as the Lakeview neighborhood. That made Judy wonder, because she’d heard of lizard mounds found in other places. So she asked Curious City:

Can you tell me more about the Lakeview lizard mound?

To answer Judy’s question, Curious City dug into the archives to find out if there’s any evidence that a lizard-shaped effigy mound actually existed in Lakeview, who built it, and why it disappeared.

Click here to view our special presentation. 

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