Frog Effigy Pipe

Image of Frog Effigy Pipe
A.D. 1000—A.D. 1200

Carved in the image of a frog, this effigy pipe was created more than 700 years ago. It was found not far from East St. Louis in the American Bottoms area, which is also home to the City of Cahokia. The pipe is made from flint clay, likely obtained from the Ozark Highlands. The right forefoot holds what is likely a rattle to be used in ceremonies, such as those that include song and dance. The bowl to hold tobacco is on the frog’s back, and the draw hole is located near the hind legs.

Other ceremonial pipes have been found, including one that shows a human being holding the rattle but on bended knee in the exact posture as the frog. Anthropologists wonder if the two are somehow related. Perhaps rituals or stories speak of a man transformed into a frog.

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