Dr. Duane Esarey, Illinois State Archaeological Survey
Lost accounts and contradictory details have made painted images on the rock bluff at Alton, Illinois, an enduring source of mystery. Jollietâ€™s original 1673 drawing was supposedly lost, the paintings disappeared before authoritative renderings were captured, and local accounts of the imagesâ€™ meaning were badly confused. This presentation verifies a contemporary drawing fitting the description of Marquetteâ€™s account as coming from Louis Jolliet and uses a Peoria Indian culture-hero account to decode the long-lost meaning of the Piasa. In the process, a new supernatural character shows how similar imagery from Mississippian and earlier cultures must be reinterpreted. FREE. For more info: (217) 586-2612 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Museum of the Grand Prairie, Lake of the Woods Forest Preserve, 950 N Lombard, Mahomet, 2 p.m.