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ancient race. Within a radius of twelve miles from Chillicothe are
located ten groups of large works, besides innumerable mounds. Within the enclosure of “Mound City” there are twenty-four tuniuli, and the whole surface of the country in that vicinity may be said to
be dotted with them. Some of these works enclose a hundred acres
or more, while others embrace very extensive areas. Four of them have two and a. half miles of embankment each. In the Paint creek valley, a section six miles in extent contains three works about equal in size to those in the Scioto valley, while there are a number of smaller ones. A full description of these ancient works, or even a mention of them, would require more space than can be accorded to it in this work. The patient student must avail himself of the opportunities presented in the perusal of the elaborate works published on this interesting and fascinating subject, while the casual reader has little interest beyond a superficial view. The field, however, is rich in archaeological lore. .
The principal a.ncient enclosures of Ross county are as follows: In Franklin township-—Big Bottom Canal; Chillicothe; twelve miles north of Chillicothe; three miles south of Chillicothe; Mound city, three miles north of Chillicotlie; “Dunlaps”—three miles north of the Mound City works; Hopetown, and another on east bank of the Scioto, opposite the Hopetown group; near Bourneville on Paint creek; Stone fort, one and a half miles south of Bourneville; and Harp-shaped works, two and a half miles southeast of Bournevillo. In Liberty township—southeast of Chillicothe; the Frankfort group, fifteen iniles west of Chillicothe, and others in that vicinity; the Stone circle, two miles west of the Stone fort, near Bourneville; the Bainbridge, Alderson and Kilgore groups. In addition to these, there are many mounds which were appai'entl_v designed as auxil
iaries, having either remote or direct connection with the principal
enclosui'es_, some of which present interesting features for study and investigation.
In the surveys and explorations of inanv of the Ross county
mounds, they were found to be similar in all important characteristics, though apparent-ly designed for different pi1i'_p0s95 Some appeared to be for defense against the encroachments of an enemy‘ and show that some knowledge of military fortification was possessed tll n 1 -‘ ‘ -v “
by e designers and builders. There are also what are known as
sacred enclosures, a class of mounds verv numerous in southern Ohi°.- and P*11'ti¢11l¥"‘1V ill U10 SCi0t0 Valley’ One distinctive difference between the “defensive” and “sacred” inclosures is in the fact lated. The dimensions of the circular ones are nearly uniform in extent, being from two hundred and fifty to three hundred feet in diameter. They usually have one gateway, often (though not always) opening to the east. Mounds are usually found within these circles, which archaeologists have termed “sacrificial” mounds. The square or rectangular works, found in combination with the circles, are of various dimensions; but it has been noticed that certain groups are distinguished by an uniformity in size that has persuaded archaeologists to claim that the builders had a standard of measurement. These squares have almost invariably eight gateways, all of which are covered or protected by small mounds. A few have been discovered which are octagonal in form. There is one of this class near Chillicothe. These are also considered as belonging to the general division known as “sacred” inclosures. In addition to the works previously mentioned as “defensive” and “sacred,” there are also those designated as “sacrificial,” “sepulchral,” “temple” and “memorial” mounds-——the latter also termed “monumental,” and in connection with these may also be classed the anomalous mounds, and mounds of observation. There is also a class, variously designated as animal, emblematic or symbolical mounds. These, as implied by their names, were crude representations of various animals, reptiles, birds, and even men; sometimes sufficiently accurate in. their representations to plainly show the characters they were designed to represent. The peculiar and distinctive features of these
that the latter are usuallv located on the le ' l ' dom occur on the table lan ‘ G 1“ ex mttonn and gel
_ . rface of the s i - ' country is broken or undulating. Thev are usually s 118:’; rolllnillng . - 7- a - 1 t _ lar in form, and frequentlv the two forms are i q 0 mm“ Sometimes they are found in gr
various relics of past ages, are of little interest to the general reader;
and yet the fact of their existence, and that they are the only remains of a race of human beings who passed away, possibly hundreds of years before the advent of the white man on the American continent, urges the effort to solve the mystery of the ancient people and their Works. But the solution of the problem has baffled the skill, research and learning of the most noted scientists of two continents, since the existence of these “works of human hands” was first determined. True, we have theories, ably supported by argument; and these, ‘in the absence of absolutely established facts, we must accept, weigh, adopt or discard, and still remain in darkness as to the origin, mission and final destiny of the Mound Builders.
Judging by the work which they have left—and that is in accord with Scriptural suggesti0n—they were a powerful race of slightly
civilized and industrious people. The earth monuments, only,
remain, these enclosing a few relics of rude art, together with the last lingering remains of mortality-——the crumbling skeleton——which the curious investigators have disturbed in their resting places. But even these have yielded to scientific minds strongly imaginative, some knowledge of the character and lives of the race. The twentieth century (lawns in almost as great ignorance of the prehistoric race as did the nineteenth ; Yet in the ever restless spirit of modern investi
gation, eflorts have been made to link the Mound Builders with some ancient and far distant race of civilized mankind.
As early as 17 72, Rev. David Jones publicly noticed the existence of the mounds, and advanced his views concerning them. In 1784, Arthur Lee wrote a treatise on the lost race, and advanced some rather visionary ideas regarding them. But the first general survey of the Works was made by Caleb Atwater, of Circleville, Ohio, in 1819, under the auspices, and at the expense, of the Archaeological Society of Worcester, Mass. It was left, however, to a Ross county man, and a native of Chillicothe, to be the instruiiient through whom a work should be produced which should in any way satisfy the
growing interest in archaeology. About 1836, Dr. Edwin Hamilton
Davis was employed with C01. Charles Wl
iitt-lesey in explorations and surveys of the Newark antiquities. In this work he became
greatly interested, and continued his investigations and collections
ever afterward. A young man named Ephriain George Squier came from New York to accept a position on the editorial force of the Scioto Gazette of Chillicothc. He also became greatly interested in archaeological matters, and in 1846, he and Dr. Davis joined in the preparation of a work which formerly stood at the head of the archaeological literature of North America. Recognizing the merit of this work, the Smithsonian Institution, at \Vasliington, D. C., assumed
a protectorate over it, and in 1848 published the work of Squier and Davis, together with some plans and notes furnished by others, under title of “Ancient 1\‘[Ol1\1l1l0IllLS of the Mississippi Valley.” This publicat-ion constituted the first systematic work with descriptions and figures of the iiumcrous remains of the Mound Builders. From that day to the present, the Sinithsoiiinn Institution has continued to publish books and original papers relating to this subject. Stimulated by this national recogiiition, and in view of the absorbing interest of
the subject, many original investigators have published 1i1€lI1llSCl'lpl'5 and books at private expense, some of which are very elaborate and complete. It seems eminently proper, though perhaps a little irrelevant, to here include a m
_ » M1‘. Squier, both of whom were well known to the residents of Ross COlll'll'y at the time men_ tioned in this connection. Edwin Hamilton Davis \\'51q bi);-n January 22, 1811, and died May 15, isss. HQ \vas ..1..g.,ed for the medical profession, and was graduated from Cincinnati Medical College, in 1t§38. IIe practiced medicine in Chillicothe about twelve years, during which time, and the period of became associated, first with Col. Charles Virhittlesev in 1836 in
- 1, 7 7
the explorations and survevs of ancient d Y
his student life, he .
of aboriginal earthworks. Dr. Davis also opened two hundred mounds at his own expense. He gathered the largest collection of mound-relics that has been made in America. These now form part of the collection of Blackmore’s Museum, at Salisbury, England. A second collection of duplicates from the results of subsequent investigations, is now in the possession of the American Museum of Natural History, in New York. The work of Squier and Davis, published in 1848, was characterized by the eminent Swiss archaeologist, A. Morlot, in a paper before the American Philosophical Society, in 1862-, as being “as glorious a monument of American science, as Bunker Hill is of American bravery.” In the spring of 1854, Dr. Davis delivered a course of lectures on archaeology before the Lowell Institute, in Boston, which was repeated in Brooklyn and New York. The doctor removed from Chillicothe in 1850, and accepted the chair of materia medica and therapeutics in the New York Medical College, where he ended his days.
Ephraim George Squier was younger by ten years than Dr. Davis, having been born at Bethlehem, June 17, 1821. His was a busy life, full of adventure along the lines of his chosen work. He was a writer of distinguished ability; and, but for the few years spent in the field of exploration, spent his life, largely, in journalistic work, and in writing historical and archaeological books. He was the author of many valuable works, besides contributing‘ articles to encyclopaedias and foreign periodicals. His death occurred in Brooklyn, Xew York, April 17, 1S88.
It is a noticeable feature of all the early publications in this department of archaeology, that they attach great antiquity to the Mound Builders. The variations in this regard are also very great. Some assume that thousands of years have elapsed since the building of these ancient relics, and all agree that they are very old. Eminent authorities are as widely at variance regarcling their antiquity, as they are concerning their origin and purpose. In closing this chapter, we prescnt the views of a number of recognized authorities, as tending to show that the Mound Builders were, or may have been, the immediate predecessors of the Indians found here on the advent of the white man.
The Marquis dc Nadaillac, in his admirable work on “Prehistoric America,” published in 1895, and edited and verified by W. H. Dall, sums up a voluminous discussion as follows: “What, it may be asked, are we to believe was the character of the race to which, for the purpose of clea mess, we have for the time being, applied the term ‘Mound Builders ?’ The answer must be, they were no more nor less than the immediate predecessors, in blood and culture, of the Indians described by De Soto’ s chroniclers, and other early explorers; the Indians who inhabited the region bf the IIl0llI1(1S at the time of their discovery by civilized men. As, in the far north, the Aleuts, up to the time of their discovery, were, by the testimony of the shell heaps, as well as their language, the direct successors of the early Esl-iiino,—so in the fertile basin of the Mississippi, the Indians were the builders, or the successors of the builders, of the singillar and varied structures attributed to the Mound Builders. It'1S true that a very difl"erent opinion has .been widely entertained, chiefly by those who were not aware of the historical evidence. Even Mr. Sqiiier, who, in his famous work on the ancient monuments of the Mississippi valley, makes no distinction in these remains, but speaks of the Mound Builders as_ an extinct race, and contrasts their progress in the arts with the supposed lo\v condition of the modern Indians, in_ a subsequent publication felt compelled to modify his views, and distinguish between the earthworks of western New York, which he admits to be of purely Indian origin, and those found in southern Ohio. Further researches have shown that no line can be drawn between the two; the difierences are merely of degree. For the most part the objects found in them, from the rude knife to the carved and polished ‘goi'get,’,iniglit have been taken from the inmost recesses of a» mound, or picked up on the surface among the debris of a recent Indian village, and the most experienced archaeologist could not decide which was their origin. Lucian Carr has recently reviewed the whole subject in a manner which cannot but carry conviction to the impatient archaeologist, but the conclusions he arrives at have the weight of other, and, as all \vill admit, most distinguished authority. It is not asserted that the mounds were built by any particular tribe, or at any particular period, nor that each and every
structures, nor that there
were not differences of culture and proficiency in the arts between
different tribes of mound builders, as between the tribes of modern Indians now known. All that can be claimed is, that there is noth1ng.1n the mounds beyond the power of such people as inhabited the regqon when discovered; that those people are known to have constructe(l many of the mounds now, or recently existing, and that there is no evidence that any other, or different people, had any hand in the construction of‘thosc niounds in regard to which direct histor1@81_€‘V1(l8_I1<1e ls wanting. Suminiiig up the results that have been at-tamed, it may be safely said that, so far from there being any a-prwrz. reason Why the red Indians could not have erected these works, the evidence shows, conclusively, that in New York and the
Gulf states, they did build mounds and enibankinents that are essentially of the same cliaracter as those found in Ohio.”
Lucian (‘arr says: “In view of the fac are the only people, except the whites, wh