Thursday, August 17, 2023

Strawtown Hopewell Earthwork Determined to be Oneota Sioux in Central Indiana


Strawtown Hopewell Earthwork Determined to be Oneota Sioux in Central Indiana

The Strawtown earthwork was excavated by IPFW in Fort Wayne, Indiana and their conclusions.
 were that the earthwork was Oneoto Sioux in origin. This earthwork had been plowed for many years
and its original contours diminished.  The archaeologist replaced the earth when finished, leaving no
 apparent signs of an excavation. The earthwork at Yorktown, Indiana looks similar in design to 
Strawtown, also on the White River and may also prove to be Oneota in origin.  
   The IPFW archaeologists also kept hidden that they had recovered numerous skeletal remains o
 the Oto Sioux and kept the fact hidden that led the Hamilton Parks Department being fined and the
dissolution of ther IPFW Archaeological Department.  
   Indiana Department of Geology and Natural History (Fourteenth Annual Report), 1884
But Strawtown has an antiquity evidently higher than the days of the Delaware Indians. The mound builders have left their footprints in this vicinity by the numerous relics of the Stone Age that have been picked up by the present inhabitants. A little west of the present village there is a burial mound about six feet high; it has been plowed over for a number of years, so that not only its height has been reduced, but its base rendered so indistinct that its diameter can not be accurately measured; it is, however, between seventy and eighty feet. It was opened in 1882 by Judge Overman, of Tipton, and four skeletons were found lying on the original surface of the ground, with their heads together and their feet directed to the cardinal points of the compass.
This type of 'spoked burial' is found throughout the Ohio Valley associated with both the Adena and the Dakota Sioux Hopewell.

At a distance of 150 yards southeast of this mound is a circular embankment, now about three feet high, and twelve feet on the base.  The diameter of the circle, measured from the bottom of the ditch on each side, is 315 feet. There is a doubt as to what period this work should be referred. A tradition among the “old settlers” claims that the remains of palisades that once formed a stockade, were standing on the embankment when the early immigrants settled here. This tradition is strengthened by the fact that in 1810 a stockade was built by the Delaware Indians somewhere near this spot, as a protection against their Miami neighbors north of White River. Moreover, it was not the custom of the mound builders to make a ditch on the outside of their embankments. On the other hand, the regularity of the work, and the perfect form of the circle, is hardly compatible with the idea that this is the work of modern savages. It is possible that the circle dates back to the period of the mound builders, and that the Delaware’s took advantage of it to build their stockade on, and made the ditch to strengthen their palisades. The ditch was been filled, and the embankment reduced much by cultivation.