The photos devoted to Cahokia Mounds need more explanation then I can give in the captions. The north american indians that inhabited acres and acres of these grounds numbered about 10,000 in the glory days of their existance. The New York Times has a good write up if you search "Cahokia". Its supposed to be the grand daddy of digs in north america and its just minutes away from the Gateway Arch in Illinois. There is an interpretive center that exists not far from the huge mound you see in one picture. You will get to know everything you need to know about what went on in the area centuries ago. An active dig is still going on near Kampsville I believe but that is quite a drive north from here somewhere near Hardin, Illinois.
The surrounding area business wise is a bust and quite depressing actually. Fairmount racetrack races the horses in the general area and car racing is held on this side of the river as well at Gateway International Speedway. A minor league baseball team, the Grizzlies, park is not far south of Cahokia Mounds.