Saturday, July 21, 2007

Trip update III

This is the last installment of my trip reports from my June expedition to Wisconsin. I did old geology and recent geology, and now for the small bit of archaeology I was able to look at while there. This is the remainder of what is at High Cliff state park. This is a mound area:

Hmmm, don't know how clear these pictures are. These are effigy mounds, which the sign says date from 1000-1500 years ago which is in the range of Woodland mound groups in the general area. The next photos provide an overview of the mound area and some description of how and why they were built:

The mounds themselves are pretty difficult to make out just from a topographic standpoint, but they have (apparently) allowed vegetation to grow on the mounds and kept the surrounding area clear so you can make out the outlines of the mounds better:

They're probably about 2 feet high. Check with the plan map above for what the shapes should look like. Here is a panther:

In the plan map they're the ones with the elongated tail. You can see the tail going back along the side of the trail; it's the back of the animal.

This next one is one of the Twin Buffalo mounds:

The head is at the camera and the legs are sticking out to the right.

And finally:

For whatever that sign is worth.

There is a small museum in Fond du Lac at the Galloway House and Village. The site at the link doesn't have anything on the museum, but it's got a rather large collection of prehistoric artifacts, mostly projectile points -- really, hundreds of 'em -- that were collected over the 20th century by Fred Rueping who was a local big shot who started a large leather company. They are arranged in large flat cases with the points and other objects usually arranged in some geometric pattern, kind of like this:

They're mostly from Wisconsin, but he and his brothers and sons collected from all over the midwest and southwest and southeast. I wasn't able to get any photos because I A) Forgot my camera that day, and B) They weren't allowing flash photography anyway. They also have some ceramics from the midwest and southwest.