The first civilizations in the world developed along the Mississippi River in North America in 5000 BC. These civilizations started from early farming villages and settlements that had begun around 3000 years ago. The first of these civilizations was Mawakpa.


Ancient Wickiup

A replica of an ancient Mawakpa wickiup.

The first recorded civilization in North America was Mawakpa. The name is a shortened version of Makoce Wakpa, meaning "Land of Rivers" in their native language. Mawakpa evolved out of farming villages located at the meeting of the Arkansas and Mississippi Rivers. The farms revolved around the production beans and squash, the two main crops and the usual food in a Mawakpan meal. Huge farms existed around the city's walls, providing Mawakpa with all its food. The farms were handled by slaves and workers, who were among the lower levels of society. The three main cities, Mitawa (Mining City), Makoce (Earth City), and Wiyohiya Pata (East City) were all connected and served by these massive farms. Herding was also used, with large herds of cattle and goats roaming the areas outside of the farms. This gave the nation a regular supply of meat, skins, and milk.

Surrounding each city was a large wall to protect from animals and other tribes who dared attack the nation. In the heart of the city was a Teepee Waka (Temple) dedicated to the gods and goddesses of their religion. Community and religious meetings would take place inside the Teepee Waka. Outside the temple would be the ruler's palace, and Makoce harbored the king of Mawakpa's palace. Surrounding these would be members of the ruler's government, such as advisors. Surrounding them would be the buildings of everybody else in the city, though merchants often set up shop near the Teepee Waka.

Most of the houses were made of sun-dried mud bricks. Due to the abundance of mud found along the banks and at the bottom of the rivers, mud was well in supply. Herders and farmers who lived outside of the city lived in mounds made of dirt and soil. Mounds were also built as places of worship outside the city. Lots of mounds were found, devoted one or more gods. These mounds were not often touched, as most of the religious activities would take place inside the Teepee Waka.

The Mawakpans had also developed a writing and number system. The language spoken was an early form of Sioux, one of the most common languages of the world today. Religious writing was written in hieroglyphics, which scribes and everyday writing relied on a series of 30 symbols, which was used to make everyday words. The numbers used were tally marks to describe an amount.

The Mawakpans were the most powerful civilization in North America for a time, but soon other civilizations popped up all along the rivers.


The Numwakian Empire was the first empire in North America. It was centered at the city of Numwak, a city located near the meeting of the Mississippi and Tennessee Rivers. Numwak and its neighbors, Myaamia and Opawata, often fought for control of land near the river. In 2800 BC, the throne of Numwak was past to the new chief, Lightning Flash, who worked to improve the military of Numwak. The military was reorganized, and was much stronger. It soon conquered Opawata, and using the combined resources of the city-states, conquered the powerful Myaamia. The Numwakian Empire gained several more products and more farming and fishing resources. The Ohio River also provided a huge supply of mussels, which were used with clay to make stronger pottery. Lots of Numwakian pottery has survived to the modern day, and has several markings of gods and goddesses on it, as well as different types of artwork.

Following their coquest of the Middle Mississippi, the Numwakians turned south. They conquered the city states of Wakpa Wicoti and Laknasol, adding them to its empire. At first, Lightning Flash stopped there to consolidate his gains. He died soon after, and his son, Setting Sun, continued his conquests. In 2700 they swooped into Mawakpa, conquering all three cities. Setting Sun continued south and eventually reached the sea, which would eventually be known as the Granlenme. Setting Sun added this land to this empire, stretching the empire out from central North American to the gulf. The city of Wenneals was established there, and people of different cultures flocked there to trade. Wenneals became a very wealthy city, and the Numwakian Empire flourished. Wenneals wealth backfired on Numwak, as its broke away from the empire's influence, beginning a period of decline for the empire.

During later reigns, the cities of Wakpa Wicoti and Myaamia rose up, and the former conquered the former Mawakpa cities. Numwak maintained over Opawata and Laknasol, though its power was much weaker.

Preceded by:
'First Civilizations' Succeeded by:
The Divided River

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