Remembering the Marketplace of the Midsouth

Mastodons used to shop the mall?

In an excavation near the Mall of Memphis, Delcourt and others (1980) observed planar, interbedded clay, silt, and sand (location shown by a star symbol in east-central part of quadrangle, lat 3504' N., long 8954' W.). Location also yielded ankle, skull, teeth, and tusk fragments of the extinct American mastodon (Mammut americanum), fossil seeds, plants, wood, and beetle remains (Brister and others, 1981), which suggest a cool climate of the last continental glacial episode.

What does all that mean? It means that 13,000 year old animal bone fossils were found between the Mall parking lot and Nonconnah Creek, which bordered the mall property (not far from where two corpses were found in 2006). These fossils are today on display at the Memphis Pink Palace museum.

Perkins Road Bridge Collapse On March 16, 1980, the bridge in the background of this picture (over Nonconnah Creek at Perkins) collapsed. Some suggested the collapse was caused by the dredging work that built up the mall site but nothing was ever proven. The bridge reopened three months later.


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