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Histories:  Trempealeau Co. Historical Accounts:

"History of Trempealeau County Wisconsin, 1917":

Chapter 3

Distribution and Character of the Antiquities

(by George H. Squier)

-As transcribed from pages 26 - 27

Broadly speaking, the earthworks, which may be taken as indicating approximately the locations of the village sites, were disposed in a curving band running from Marshland along the margin of the river terraces to Trempealeau Bay, then from Trempealeau Village along the terrace fronting the Mississippi to Black River, ending with a number of groups on the Black River below and above the mouth of Beaver Creek, and a couple of groups further up the latter stream near Galesville.

These several groups have suffered from cultivation and other agencies of destruction in varying degrees, those along the Mississippi front, perhaps the most; it is doubtful if more than one in ten of those once existing is now in recognizable condition.

Those on the Black, south of Beaver Creek, have also suffered severely. The larger ones are still recognizable as artificial, but the forms cannot be determined. The best preserved are the groups along the Chicago and Northwestern Railroad, at what is known as Pine Creek siding, and at Trempealeau Bay, and the one on Black River near Decorah's Peak. The largest single mound still preserved intact (aside from the platforms which will be separately described) is that on the farm of William Nicholls -- the largest of a group of large mounds. Distinguished as to form, the mounds may be classed as

(a) conical, mounds having a circular or approximately circular base. They may be of all sizes from a few feet in diameter and a few inches high to those a hundred feet in diameter and a dozen feet high. They may also vary widely in the degree of convexity.

(b) Elongate -- those that are notably longer in one direction than the other-two or three times as long. These also vary much in size.

(c) True linear -- those several to many times as long as wide. While the length of these may vary greatly from less than a hundred up to several hundred feet, their height and width varies but little. They are always as straight as the topography will permit. They are often in series, end to end, the intervals seeming to be often little more than passageways.

(d) Taper linear -- these, as the name indicates, are straight, elongate mounds, usually varying from a hundred to near three hundred feet in length, which show a regular taper from the large end to the vanishing point. The rate of taper is approximately the same in different examples, i. e., the base subtends nearly equal angles. It follows that in the larger examples the large end is broader and higher than in the smaller.

(e) Effigies -- mounds made to represent various birds and animals. Wisconsin probably contains more of this type than all the rest of America. A great number of forms have been described, those most common in this vicinity being birds -- apparently two or three species are shown -- bear, deer, and a form rather doubtfully referred to the panther type of the eastern part of the state.
 


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