Louisa County Historical Society

Native Peoples  - Timeline

Early Man/Pre-Clovis Period 20,000 to 9,000 BC

Evidence shows that native groups lived in Sussex , VA. The Cactus Hill archaeological site 90 miles South of Richmond shows human campfires, plant matter, and discarded animal bones that could be from as early as 50,000 BC.

Paleo-Indian/Clovis Period 9,000 to 8,000 BC

By this point, native people had moved as far as modern-day Louisa County . The earliest artifacts found in Louisa are “Clovis-type” spearheads. Groups hunted along the North and South Anna Rivers, and had a sophisticated culture with an extensive variety of tool-making technologies.

Archaic Period 7,000 to 2,000 BC

During this period native peoples made the transition from hunter-gatherer societies to established villages and farms. Small spears became the most commonly used tool, most likely reflecting the disappearance of many large mammals. The bow and arrow was invented toward the end of this era, as was the atlatl, a spear-throwing device.

Woodland Period 1,000 BC to 1600 AD

As villages and communities became more established, agriculture became increasingly important as the dominant means of food supply. Numerous villages grew around Louisa, and the North American native population could have been as high as 42 million. The first European explorers began to reach the New World from Spain.

Colonial Expansion Period 1600-1700 AD

In 1607 the first English colonists arrived, finding a large, vibrant, and sophisticated culture already in America . However, 90% of the native population was killed by smallpox, carried by the English settlers and which they had no immunity to. Groups began to flee westward to escape the disease and English influence, and by 1730 all of the Monacan peoples had fled over the Blue Ridge Mountains and out of Louisa.

  Native Peoples 


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Louisa County Historical Society • P.O. Box 1172 • Louisa, Virginia 23093 • 540-967-5975