Tuesday - Thursday 9am - 4pm
Friday 9am - 12pm
Early man and civilization used nature for their home, food and clothing and finding a cave was probably considered penthouse living. Caves provided shelter from weather and protection from danger with the best preserved remains of humans having been found in limestone caverns. As man evolved from a small population, the need for homes changed and animals may have been the inspiration for some building materials. Watching the birds mak a well compacted nest from sticks, mud and grass may have given man the idea of transitioning from cave dwelling to open land.
The Ohio river borders Kentucky and Indiana with the community of Evansville Indiana having an early civilization called Angel Mounds built between 1000 and 1450 AD and consisted of 1,000 people that were part of the Mississippian culture. The Native Americans constructed mounds called earthworks by digging earth and piling it systematically to form mounded walls and elevated areas. The Ohio River's spring flooding was good for growing crops and allowed corn to be used for trade which in turn supported the population and town, giving the Mississippian culture chiefdom over the region.
The need for permanent dwellings grew and mud bricks became the stronger construction material. Unbaked adobe bricks consisted of sand, gravel, clay, water, and straw or grass mixed together by hand, formed in wooden molds, and dried by the sun. Just as the bird nest is packed with materials of mud, sticks, and grass but over time the nest deteriorates, so would the bricks. Adobe bricks used during early civilization were found to be inferior and permanence was limited because they were not fired in a kiln so they never hardened and the dependability was unstable and fluctuated with the changes of temperature and weather. However, the Romans were very innovative builders and used a form of concrete extensively for 700 years from 300 BC to 476 AD. The Roman Empire concrete was made from quicklime, pumice and pozzolana, and for that reason the building of Roman structures helped propel architectural history. By limiting the use of stone and brick the Roman building were of a more sound construction and even today some those historical structures still stand. It is not known how the Romans knew to developed concrete but the termite does makes a natural concrete as well as coral organisms uses calcium salt from sea water to make limestone reefs that are hard enough to tear open a ship's steel hull. Could it have been these animals that were the catalyst for the growth of the great Roman Empire architect?
Today's building structures are composed of some the same ingredients used in ancient civilizations, however man today has produce a more reinforced building material. Man is no longer watching the animal's building technique instead modern buildings are so warm and inviting that today animals want to call them home and man is finding it difficult to keep mice, birds, spiders, cockroaches, bats and even termites away. Man and animal has and can still benefit each other but man must strive to respect each side of nature to continue a lasting existence.
Even though the nature of Hurricane Gordan passed through, the Joe Ford Nature Center opened its door during the latest Family Jamboree. This was our fund raiser and the storm did put a damper on the event however the Nature Center stayed good at providing an inviting atmosphere, no we didn't make the funds we had hoped for but we did have some visitors who enjoyed our hospitality. Thanks goes out to all who worked to make this event possible and we are looking forward in doing this again in 2019.