The first careful investigation of Wisconsin mounds is published in 1838.

Notes respecting certain Indian Mounds and Earthworks, in the form of Animal Effigies, chiefly in the Wisconsin Territory, U.S.


The only earlier descriptions of Wisconsin mounds had been a short passage about those near Prairie du Chien in William H. Keating's 1824 Narrative of an Expedition to the Source of St. Peter's River... and Nathaniel Hyer's 1837 article on Aztalan (both given elsewhere on the Turning Points site). Richard Taylor, who knew about mounds in Ohio and had studied European archaeology, was the first person to carefully measure and map any Wisconsin effigy mounds. When he published this illustrated article in the leading scientific journal of his day, he opened scholarly debate on the origin and purpose of the mounds. That debate would last most of the 19th century until the investigations of Cyrus Thomas were published in 1894.

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Related Topics: Early Native Peoples
Mississippian Culture and Aztalan
Effigy Mounds Culture
Creator: Taylor, Richard C., 1789-1851
Pub Data: American Journal of Science and Arts XXXIV (July 1838): 88-104
Citation: Taylor, Richard C. "Notes respecting certain Indian Mounds and Earthworks, in the form of Animal Effigies, chiefly in the Wisconsin Territory, U.S." American Journal of Science and Arts XXXIV (July 1838): 88-104. Online facsimile at:  http://www.wisconsinhistory.org/turningpoints/search.asp?id=7; Visited on: 9/2/2014
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