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Wisconsin scientist P.R. Hoy on effigy mounds (1885)

Who built the mounds?

The question posed in the title of this article perplexed white settlers for most of the 19th century. A large number of creative answers were formulated by well-meaning but unscientific observers who were unwilling to credit the obvious answer given here by naturalist P.R. Hoy: "In view of the foregoing evidence, the legitimate conclusion must follow that the 'mound builders' were Indians and nothing but Indians, the immediate ancestors of the present tribes..." His explanation was supported to the satisfaction of most modern archaeologists in the work of Cyrus Thomas, the Wisconsin portion of which is given elsewhere at Turning Points in Wisconsin History. This link brings you to the table of contents for the issue in which Hoy's article appeared. Scroll down until you find his piece.

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Related Topics: Early Native Peoples
Effigy Mounds Culture
Creator: Hoy, P. R., (Philo Romayne), 1816-1892.
Pub Data: Transactions of the Wisconsin Academy of Sciences, Arts and Letters, vol. VI (1885): 84-100
Citation: Hoy, P. R., (Philo Romayne). "Who built the mounds?" Transactions of the Wisconsin Academy of Sciences, Arts and Letters, vol. VI (1885): 84-100; Online facsimile at:; Visited on: 4/20/2014
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