In Search of the Ancient Rock River Canal

In Search of the Ancient Rock River Canal




 One of the mysteries that I am currently pursuing are the historical accounts of ancient canals that have been described east and along the Mississippi River. Why canals? Canals, like roads were constructed to move goods and services. What were they moving?

   The only plausible commodity that would necessitate a canal would be copper that was being mined north, in the Lake Superior region. Canals along the Mississippi would indicate that large amounts of copper were being sent down to the Gulf of Mexico. The only plausible builders were the Amorite metal traders with origins in the eastern Mediterranean.
   The following historical accounts describe ancient canals along the tributaries of the Mississippi River. The fact that a ship passed through one of the canals is evidence that these canals were for commerce and not for irrigation.

History of Mifflin County Illinois, 1887


     On the banks of Green River, in Henry County in Illinois, are traces of an ancient city, which was once the abode of a commercial people, and points to a time when the Rock River was a navigable stream of some commercial importance. A canal connected these two rivers some three miles above the junction. This canal is about a mile and a half long and is perfectly straight for about one-fourth of a mile from the Green River end; it is then relieved by a perfectly easy curve, reaching the Rock River at a bend, and showing that the engineering was done in a masterly manner. The soil is of a very fine texture, mixed with a ferruginous mineral deposit; hence its firmness, and the reason of it withstanding the washings of rains, for this great lapse of time. About twelve miles back and above this canal is another partly natural and partly artificial connecting Rock and Mississippi Rivers. This is so well preserved that about twelve years ago the "Serling" a small Rock River steamer, passed through it into the Mississippi river. These works are as old as the mountains of Egypt, and were in all probability built by a contemporaneous people.