Virtually, every California-produced TV documentary on the Maya Civilization begins with haunting music and tells you that the Maya cities all “mysteriously” disappeared between 800 and 1000 AD . . . then announces that viewers will be finally told what happened to these cities and their occupants. Yes, Palenque was incinerated by a volcano in 800 AD and almost of all the large cities in the central and southern portions of the Maya realm were abandoned during that period of incessant warfare, but in the forthcoming three videos on Campeche, you will see the magnificent architecture of 19 cities that were occupied from around 500 BC to 1500 AD.
These cities were abandoned in response to an apocalyptic smallpox plague, introduced by the voyages of the Colon (as in Christopher Columbus) brothers. It is known that a significant number of survivors of this plague moved elsewhere. French ethnologists now believe that they relocated to the southern coast of Cuba. Even today, the rural people of the central-south coast of Cuba maintain many Campeche Maya customs, especially in regard to their diets. Most of their meals consist of mixed vegetable-fish or meat stews, which we know in the Southeast as Brunswick Stew!
There was an earlier emigration from Campeche, though. This during the period from 540-600 AD and was caused by and asteroid striking the Atlantic Ocean near Cape Canaveral, FL then a series of major volcanic eruptions in Central America, Mexico and Iceland. Most of Mesoamerica was plunged into decades of cloudy skies, chilly summers and frequent rains. It was the first “collapse” of the Maya Civilization.
A strange thing occurred during this time period in the Nacoochee Valley of Northeast Georgia. A town containing houses, identical to the one above, suddenly appeared on the west side of Kenimer Hill and massive Kenimer Mound. Known to archaeologists as the Eastwood Village Site, it is the earliest known example of post-ditch construction in the Southeast AND of traditional Chickasaw oval houses and oval plazas. Chickasaw houses are identical to traditional Campeche Maya houses. Houses in other sections of the Maya civilization were rectangular. The Eastwood Village was oriented to the Winter Solstice Sunset . . . the azimuth of the first annual day of the Maya calendar.
While wandering through the dirt trails of the eastern Campeche jungle, Ana and I stumbled upon the village of Xkulok. Its layout and orientation was identical to that of the Eastwood Village.
Now YOU know!