Ohio History Journal

  • 1
  • 2

Ohio Researches into Archaeology

Ohio Researches into Archaeology.          151


incidentally in correcting a number of errors with regard to the

ancient monuments of Ohio, due to the superficial nature of the

examinations and measurements made by different writers, and

the errors, deliberate or otherwise, in their descriptions. The

book is a most valuable contribution to archaeology, and the state

society is to be congratulated upon its enterprise in securing its

preparation and publication.





[The following is from the pen of the distinguished author, Frank

B. Sanborn, who was the guest of the Ohio State Archaeological and

Historical Society at its annual meeting, June 6, 1902. The article here

produced first appeared in the Springfield Republican of Springfield, Mass.

-E. O. R.]

The barbarous archaeology of North America has been re-

ceiving great attention of late years, especially in Ohio, where

its more important monuments are; and now Gerard Fowke,

backed by the Ohio Archaeological Society, whose president is

Gen. Brinkerhoff of Mansfield, and its secretary E. O. Randall

of Columbus, has written the "Archaeological History of Ohio,"

at much length and with many engravings, to describe the work

of the mound builders in that state and near its borders, and to

illustrate the character of our aboriginies, who must have built

the great works and furnished the wars and burials and religious

rites for which they were built. No such complete single volume

exists, so far as I know; and in it are summed up, not without

scorn and refutation, those theories of the origin of the works

and the habits of the builders, which do not square with the

author's own. It is quite impossible now, and probably always

will be, for us to understand the minute causes and full explana-

tion of these numerous and peculiar mounds and earthworks; for

the race or races which made them had no literature, nor even an

alphabet, that first step in literature, so that they could hand

down to posterity their own explanation, as the Greeks and other

literary races have done. Mr. Fowke makes it appear clearly

enough that there was no lack of intellectual ability in our aborig-