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Osage | Quapaw | Kaw | Oto | Omaha | Comanche | Creek
Language(s): English
Date: 1834; 1837
Type:Text
Extent: 2 items
Description: Letters from Zina Pitcher and John Collins Warren discussing grave robbing of Indigenous ancestors' remains. Pitcher mentions difficulties in getting information about the deceased from Algonquians, who won't speak of the dead. Mentions Osages, Quapaws, Missouri, Kansas, Otos, Omahas; Chitimachas or Comanches; and the five tribes of the Creek nation. Warren lists American skulls in his collection: mostly eastern, except for Ancient Niagara and Chinook, not flattened, plus Ohio cavern and Ohio rock and Mound at Lexington; Algonquian from eastern Massachusetts. He talks of the Guanche cast from the Canaries and some unidentified skulls he has seen.
Collection: Samuel George Morton Papers (Mss.B.M843)

Caddo | Delaware | Choctaw | Chickasaw | Osage | Pascagoula | Natchez
Language(s): English
Date: 1804
Type:Text
Extent: 107 pages
Description: "Journal up the Red and Washita rivers, with William Dunbar, by order of the U.S. with list of common names of some of the trees and vegetables from the River Washita." No. 2 of Explorations in the Louisiana Country. Describes mounds near Natchez and on the Ouachita. Mentions Caddo trace; Captain Jacobs, a Delaware Indian; Chickasaws, Choctaws, Osages (Little Osages and Grand Osages) and Pascagoulas; warfare and raids; and the singing of a Choctaw woman mourning a child. Printed (abstract only) as Jefferson (1806). [See also Hunter journals #473, volumes 2, 3, 4, May 27, 1804-March 29, 1805.]
Collection: Mémoire sur le district du Ouachita dans la province de la Louisianne, [1803] (Mss.917.6.Ex7)

Cherokee
Language(s): English
Date: 1838
Contributor: Martin, James
Type:Text
Extent: 2 items
Description: Letters discussing grave robbing of Indigenous ancestors' remains. Correspondence regarding James Martin's collection of Cherokee skulls in North Carolina and Tennessee, where Martin was based at Fort Cass as medical director for Army to the Cherokee Nation. Martin has no flattened skulls as Morton has requested. Mentions Dr. Eugene H. Abadie in Florida; changing burial practices among Cherokees; various cave sites in Tinnipic and Cumberland River Valleys where skulls might be found.
Collection: Samuel George Morton Papers (Mss.B.M843)

Choctaw
Language(s): English
Date: 1904 and undated
Type:Text
Extent: 14 pages
Description: Item titled "Miscellaneous notes (Choctaw)." Includes one-page note with embossed Great Seal of the Choctaw Nation; 9 pages of bibliographical notes; 2 pages on Choctaw burial-1904; and 2 pages on Choctaw medicines. Some of these items are restricted due to cultural sensitivity.
Collection: Frank G. Speck Papers (Mss.Ms.Coll.126)

Language(s): English
Date: 1940-1945
Extent: .1 linear feet
Description: This collection of memorabilia includes clippings, postcards (one from Marion H. Dickson), a brochure, and an arrow-head (a gift from the site to Murphy D. Smith, who deposited these materials at the APS). Images from a 1945 article in the Peoria Morning Star on the establishment of the new historical state park at the site include several striking photos of an excavated burial site (described as containing 230 skeletons of Mound-builders who died in a devastating epidemic), including one with of a school group at the burial site and another highlighting Dr. Don F. Dickson's method of leaving the dead in situ; a photo of the Dickson family farmstead (on which the Dickson mounds were located) before the establishment of the state park; and a photo of reconstructed pottery displayed in the museum. There is also a brochure about the site as a tourist and educational attraction with information on the history of the mounts, the Dickson Mound Museum, the work of the Dickson family (primarily Dr. Don F. Dickson, Marion H. Dickson, and Thomas M. Dickson), and the neighboring Payne Collection of artifacts. Several images of the excavated mass burial indicate that it was expected to be the main attraction to visitors, and it is called the "greatest display of stone age man in the world...230 skeletons left in original positions." Views of the burial site are also featured on the two postcards. The Dickson Mounds Museum is still a branch of the Illinois State Museum, and the Dickson Mounds are now understood to be a Mississippian cemetery complex associated with nearby village sites and a ceremonial center.
Collection: Dickson Mound (Lewistown, Ill.) Memorabilia (Mss.970.6.D56)

Choctaw | Creek | Yuchi | Cherokee | Chickasaw | Atakapa | Natchez | Chinook
Language(s): English
Date: 1829-1839
Type:Text
Extent: 21 items
Description: Letters mostly discussing grave robbing of Indigenous ancestors' remains and Morton's phrenological work. Topics include human and animal crania and skeletons that correspondents have and/or have sent to Morton; phrenological anaylsis of Indigenous ancestors' remains, attributing traits to various peoples based on skull formation; Native American burial sites and mortuary customs; excavation of Native mounds and descriptions of the objects and human remains found inside; discovery of mastadon skeletons; and speculation about Native American origins. Several letters relate to Ohio, Illinois, and the Upper Mississippi Valley. Peru and Mexico also mentioned.
Collection: Samuel George Morton Papers (Mss.B.M843)

Language(s): English
Date: 1811-1884
Type:Text
Extent: 4 items
Description: 1) Moses Fiske's description of skeletal remains found in basket burial in Warren County, Tennessee, in 1810. 2) Charles Willson Peale's catalogue of museum contents: "Indian curiosities, dresses, ornaments. Implements of agriculture, war, etc. of various nations. In the upper Room." Artifacts and articles of dress of western Indians (Lewis and Clark); ornaments from Ohio mounds; unidentified belts, pouches, and arrowheads. 3) Benjamin Franklin Peale's description of his collection of Material culture; thinks pottery fragments sent to him by Sellers are those of Mound Builders. 4) George Escol Seller's letter describing his artifacts from mounds in Ohio, 60 specimens of tools and cloth. Argues that Franklin Peale collected specimens to show the unity of mankind, while Sellers collects to find the variety of tools. Discusses Mound Builders at some length.
Collection: Peale-Sellers Family Collection (Mss.B.P31)

Natchez | Choctaw | Chickasaw | Yuchi | Delaware | Cherokee | Creek | Osage
Language(s): English | French
Date: 1792-1897
Extent: 28 items
Description: Items relating to materials about the Native peoples of Eastern North America. Topics include papers and articles, particularly those considered for publication (on the relation of pentagonal dodecahedron found near Marietta, Ohio, to shamanism; memoir on aboriginal monuments; memoir of Dr. Charles D. Meigs on bones and burial customs; multiple items regarding a letter from S. P. Hullihen to Dr. Richard Harlan regarding inscription on a stone found at Grave Creek near Wheeling, and Thomas Townsend's claim to prior publication rights to Grave Creek inscription; Caleb Forshey's paper describing a great mound in Adams County, Mississippi; Cushing's publication on exploration of ancient key dwellers' remains on the Gulf Coast of Florida; a response to Henry Phillips' article on supposed runic inscriptions at Yarmouth, Nova Scotia); requests for information or materials (Samuel Miller's request for copies of designated Indian vocabularies of Delaware, Cherokee, Creek, Chickasaw, Choctaw, and Osage, for training missionaries of United Foreign Missionary Society); donations to APS ("curiosities" taken from Indian grave near Cincinnati; relics and fossil shells found in Huntingdon County, West Virginia;"western productions"); Peter S. du Ponceau's work on Southern Indian languages and customs (including Creek, Natchez, Choctaw, Chickasaw, and Yuchi), Indian vocabularies, and for APS; information from Judge William C. Frazer (Wisconsin Territory, Superior County), concerning discovery of burned bricks in Aztalan Mound, Jefferson County, Wisconsin; Cutler's estimation of age of Ohio mounds referred to in Barton (1787) using tree-ring dating; sketch of the plan of an ancient work three miles southeast of Lexington (Kentucky); American Antiquarian Society's plans to publish a volume on mounds based on Caleb Atwater's data; and comparative vocabularies of British Columbia tribes. Other individuals mentioned include Murray, Duralde, Colonel Smith, Benjamin Hawkins, Robley Dunglison, Isaac Lea, Benjamin W. Richards, George M. Wharton, Nathaniel Ware, General Wayne, Dr. Tolmie, George M. Dawson, and Abelard Tomlinson.
Collection: American Philosophical Society Archives (APS.Archives)

Delaware | Haudenosaunee | Mohawk | Oneida | Seminole
Alternate forms: Lenape, Iroquois
Language(s): French
Date: circa 1837
Extent: 2 volumes
Description: These two bound volumes contain a published first edition, 1837, of Jean Baptiste Gaspard Roux de Rochelle's Etats-Unis D'Amerique (History of the United States of America), a Frenchman's take on American history and culture, and a companion volume of original sketches used for the 96 engraved plates. Many of the images--of American scenes and history--in the second volume appear to be based on the work of de Bry and other artists. Some are in color. There are 27 original drawings of Native Americans and 27 steel engravings of the same. They depict indigenous people, primarily from the, in native attire hunting, fishing, playing, mourning, warring, eating, cooking, and celebrating. Some illustrations accompanying the early text are based on Theodore De Bry's engravings of John White's watercolor drawings of Roanoke in 1585. The later historical text is accompanied by illustrations of Oneidas, Mohawks, and Delawares conferring or warring with Europeans. There are also sketches of petroglyphs, pottery, wampum, and headgear. Illustrators and engravers include Vernier, Branche, and Milbert. Some images have been digitized.
Collection: Etats-Unis d'amerique (Mss.917.3.R76)

Haudenosaunee | Delaware | Catawba | Cherokee | Houma | Nanticoke | Abenaki | Cayuga | Tutelo | Onondaga | Mohawk | Tuscarora
Alternate forms: Iroquois, Lenape
Language(s): English
Date: 1777-1950, bulk 1914-1950
Type:Text
Extent: 23 folders
Description: Materials relating to Speck's study of Haudenosaunee history, language, and culture. Includes correspondence with Haudenosaunee consultants like John L. Buck, Seth Newhouse, Josiah Hill, David S. Hill, etc., on topics ranging from the seizure of wampum by the Canadian government, Newhouse's request that Speck secure wampum for him, Newhouse's offer to sell Speck his history manuscript, which he has been working on since 1885 [#1650], Haudenosaunee burial customs, religion, etc.; an essay by Jesse Moses titled "The Long-House man, a Six Nations Indian of Canada speaks his mind," about the relationship of Christianity and the long-house religion; Speck's correspondence with William N. Fenton, principally concerning field work among the Catawba, Cherokee, and Houma but also touching on Fenton's Seneca field work, Speck's various studies of the Haudenosaunee, and the Second Conference on Iroquois Research; correspondence with other anthropologists about various aspects of Haudenosaunee history and culture such as material culture specimens, archaeology, historical sources, agriculture, education, warfare, religion, population statistics, etc.; a draft of Speck's "Reflections on Iroquois religion" and related correspondence; an undated document describing a meeting of Delaware, Nanticoke, and Canadian Iroquois in the presence of Speck and recounting the injustices suffered by Indians in United States and Canada; a copy of a 1777 treaty made by Peter F. Timothy, a Moravian Delaware, in August 1888, and transmitted to Speck by Jesse Moses; and Speck's research notes and other miscellaneous correspondence on topics such as masks, art, museum specimens, hunting territory, chiefships, words, warfare with the Abenaki, the Delaware-as-women theme, academic publications and conferences, etc.
Collection: Frank G. Speck Papers (Mss.Ms.Coll.126)