Clark County, Ohio

History and Genealogy


From The History of Clark County, Ohio
Chicago: W.H. Beers & Co., 1881 - Page 243

There are several mounds and other pre-historic works within the limits of this county. "The greatest is the mound at Enon. Some years ago, a party of young men, impelled by curiosity, dug a hole down through the center of the mound. One of them says: 'We found top soil all the way for thirty feet, when we came to a cave of curious construction; it was the shape of a bake-oven, and high enough for a man to stand upright in the center. It tapered town on the sides. On one side there was a door, that had evidently led from a ground entrance into the cave. In the middle of the cave was a pile of dirt and stone resembling an altar; on this were bones, charcoal and some pieces of decayed wood, and one piece of partly charred wood in a good state of preservation. This wood was preserved, but the bones would not stand moving. After the party had satisfied their curiosity, they cut their names and the date on the alter, filled up the excavation and left." (See Mad River Township.) On the Bechtle property, in the northwest part of the city of Springfield, and near the bridge across Buck Creek, is a mound which has never been opened. It is about twenty feet high and seventy-five or one hundred feet across the base.

In what is now the railroad yard, just east of Limestone street, in Springfield, was a mound of considerable size. This was removed when the road was graded, many years since. Near this was a much smaller one, which was not known to be a mound until the process of leveling revealed its character. Both these contained bones and the usual specimens of charcoal, etc.

On the farm of Edward Newlove, in the western part of the township of Harmony, is what appears to have been a fortification, and of whcih neither tradition nor history gives an account. The outer limits of this earthwork inclose nearly four acres, and are in shape an oblong square. It has the appearance of having been planned and constructed in accordance with the rules of civil engineering, having a gateway on the north end, and one nearly opposite, on the south end. Half a mile north of this fort is a huge mound, the base of which covers about one acre. From this mound many bones have been exhumed, of a race of beings differing greatly from the present, and having no similarity to the red man. A mile west of the fort above mentioned, on the farm of William Allen, is an ancient burying-ground of an extinct race. The bones taken from this place are much larger than those of Americans, and, in many respects, give evidence of having belonged to a pre-historic people.

On the old Ward farm, about two miles north of Springfield, are three ancient works. Two of these were cones of the usual form, and some twenty or thirty feet high when the country was new, though now much reduced by plowing over them. One of these was opened in 1853, and was found to contain bones, pottery, etc. These mounds were about one thousand feet apart, and on a due north and south line.

The third was a low gravel hill or knoll, directly east of the mounds, and was full of bones, flints and other ancient handiwork.

Near the residence of Henry Snyder, at Snyder's Station, in Mad River, a large, mound-like burying-ground was found a few years since. This ground was filled with bones, arrow-points, etc. The arrows were of an unusual form, being round at the point. The area was not large, yet the excavations yielded 128 of those points, some of which were in the Ohio collection, exhibited by William Whiteley, Esq., at the Centannial at Philadelphia.

In 1876, at Catawba Station, on the C., C., C. & I. R. R., a gravel-pit was opened and an old burying-ground disclosed. This contained a vast quantity of bones.

The residence of Thomas Sharp, Esq., on East Clifton street, Springfield, stands on a knoll which contains bones and other relics of a character generally found in these burial-places.