700 Luther Dr
Mankato, MN 56001
Stearns History Museum
St. Joseph, MN
In this investigation students will study the wickiup, a type of shelter used by the Meskwaki and other Native American people living throughout the upper Midwest and western Great Lakes region at the time of European contact. The word wickiup comes from the Algonquian word wi kiy bi or wi·kiya·pi meaning lodge or house. The lesson will introduce the circular, domed, pole-and-mat-or bark-covered winter home of the Meskwaki called the A-ba-ge-ka-ni (ah bah GWAY KAH nee).
It includes archaeologists’ interpretations of the Midwestern Wickiup site and details about the artifacts found. Quadrant maps from the archaeological site are provided for students to study and use.
Mr. Johnathan Buffalo, a member of the Meskwaki, guides students through the investigation. Through archaeology students discover artifacts left behind and how artifacts assist archaeologists in understanding the lifeways of the site’s residents. Students learn about the importance of archaeological sites such as the Midwestern Wickiup today.