Mapping Morton Village: A Interactive Digital Map (http://mappingmv.matrix.msu.edu) is an public educational tool showcasing the importance of archaeological research through the Morton Village research project. The data provided through the site is from the joint research project of Michigan State University and the Dickson Mounds Museum (a part of the Illinois State Museum system), run by Dr. Jodie O’Gorman and Dr. Michael Conner.
Motivated by Autumn Beyer and Nikki Silva’s dissertation research, as well as the closing of the Illinois State Museum system, this project hopes to raise awareness of the value that archaeological research has to understanding and interpreting human history, and provide a resource for the public and researchers. Public outreach and education has always been a major component of the Morton Village research project, and Mapping Morton Village provides a digital outlet for reaching broader audiences.
The Mapping Morton Village site includes four main components: the interactive map, background, glossary, and the archaeology topics. The focus of the Mapping Morton Village site is the interactive map, where visitors to the site are able to engage with the various archaeological structures and highlighted topics to learn more about what archaeology actually is and its various components. In addition to this map, detailed background on both Mapping Morton Village and the Morton Village archaeological project are provided. To assist visitors to the site in understanding the topical jargon, the glossary page provides key terms and definitions for easy reference. Lastly, the highlighted topics within the archaeological map are expanded upon under the ‘Archaeology’ tab, giving detailed explanations of each topic as well as pictures from the Morton Village research project.