It's one of the oldest signs of civilization on the North American Continent, yet many of those who call Minnesota home today don't even know of its existence.

Readers Digest recently listed the coolest secret location in each of the fifty U.S. states, and its choice for the Land of Ten Thousand Lakes just might be the oldest of them all.

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Welcome to the Jeffers Petroglyphs of Southwest Minnesota

Credit: WCCO via YouTube
Credit: WCCO via YouTube
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This amazing historical site is located about an hour west of Mankato and is thought to be between six and ten thousand years old. It has ancient drawings of bison, spears, and the mythical thunderbird carved into the quartzite in a meticulous fashion.

Ancestors of the Dakota, Cheyenne, Ioway, and many other Native American tribes are thought to have traveled many hundreds of miles to visit the site.

Here's what the Readers Digest Website has to say about the Jeffers Petroglyphs:

The Jeffers Petroglyphs is a spiritual and historic site about an hour west of Mankato in western Minnesota. There are more than 5,000 images of people, animals, and tools carved into the rock, some of which date back 9,000 years. When you visit, you begin at the visitor center with hands-on exhibits and a multimedia presentation to explain the history and significance of the site. You’ll follow up with a tour of the carvings, along with discussions of their meanings and their origins. A daily “Adventures in Nature” program teaches kids about American Indian games and tools as well as the ecosystem of the adjacent prairie.

-Readers Digest Website

To see the full list of the coolest secret location in each state, visit the article from Readers Digest. And to learn more about the Jeffers Petroglyphs, check out the YouTube Video below.

Story Source: Minnesota Historical Society Website, Readers Digest Website

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