Grand Village of the Illinois

The Grand Village of the Illinois, also called Old Kaskaskia Village, is a site significant for being the best documented historic Native American village in the Illinois River valley. It was a large agricultural village of Native Americans of the Illini confederacy, located on the north bank of the Illinois River near the present town of Utica, Illinois.

French explorers Louis Joliet and Father Jacques Marquette came across it in 1673. The Kaskaskia, a tribe of the Illiniwek people (and later, other Illiniwek tribes) lived in the village. It grew rapidly after a mission and fur trading post were established there in 1675, to a population of about 6,000 people in about 460 houses. Around 1691 the Kaskaskia and other Illiniwek moved further south, abandoning the site due to pressure from an Iroquois invasion from the northeast.

The historic site is owned by the U.S. state of Illinois. The state has conducted archaeological excavations there. The site was declared a National Historic Landmark in 1964.

A prominent local landmark, Starved Rock, stands on the south bank of the river directly opposite the Grand Village site. Explorer La Salle founded a fort there to be near this village. Starved Rock is also a National Historic Landmark and is included in Starved Rock State Park.

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