Matthew Canfield ReadAnnual report of the Board of Regents of the Smithsonian Institution, 1867
Volume 22 By Smithsonian Institution.
Board of Regents, Smithsonian Institution, United States National Museum, Washington 1868


By M. C. Read.

The mound from which the specimens sent you were taken is situated on the left bank of the Tennessee river, above Citico creek, and about one mile from Chattanooga. It is on the rich alluvial land bordering the river, and so situate on the outer side of a curve of the stream as to be readily seen by parties coming up or down the river, as well as by any one approaching the valley over any of the hills and mountains by which Chattanooga is surrounded. Directly east of it is the site of an ancient pottery and manufactory of flint arrow-heads, several acres being covered with fragments of broken pottery, burned clay, clippings of flint and arrow-heads, many of them apparently spoiled in the hands of the manufacturer. Broken stone hammers, stone and earthenware pipes, flat circular disks of the size of large checker-men, made of stone, pottery, and occasionally of hard, mineral coal, are frequently found. The place where these are found has been for years under the plough, but, on digging to the depth of eighteen inches or more, ashes and coal, amorphous masses of burned clay, fragments of bones, and abundance of broken pottery, arc found. This is all of a coarse character; the various attempts at ornamentation being rude and inartistic. The material used was the earth taken from below the surface and filled with finely comminuted fragments of river shells. The surface is covered with these shells, many of them in a good state of preservation, of the same character with those found more abundantly down the river at Shell Mound and other places, and all identical with the species still existing in the river. These facts are of especial interest on account of their bearing upon the relative age of the mound. This one is of an oval form, with a base of 158 by 120 feet; the larger diameter being upon the true meridian, or as near it as we could determine by an ordinary pocket compass. The dimensions of the top, which was substantially level, are 82 by 44 feet, and the height 19 feet.

For purposes of examination, and to provide the gardener of the Sanitary Commission, who had his office on the mound, with a place to store vegetables for spring planting, a tunnel was excavated into the mound from the east, a little one side of the centre, and on a level with the natural surface of the ground. When the point directly under the outer edge of the top of the mound was reached, holes were found containing fragments of rotted wood, showing that stakes or palisades had been erected here when the mound was commenced. The sound of the pick indicating a cavity or different material below, the excavation was earned downward about two feet, when two skeletons were uncovered, fragments of which, preserved, arc marked No. 1. The bones were packed in a small space, as though the bodies were crowded down, without much regard to position of hands, into a pit not exceeding three feet in length. One of the skulls is of especial interest, as possibly indicating that the remains are those of victims immolated in some sacrificial or burial rites. The side was crushed in, as if with a club. I have connected together the pieces of the upper jaw, so that they retain the position in which they were found, a position which cannot, with probability, be supposed to be the result of the settling of the earth around it, if unbroken when buried. The bones of the bodies, although so friable that they could not be preserved, were entire, in positions indicating that the bodies had not been dismembered, and forbidding the supposition that they were the remains of a cannibal feast.

The excavation was carried forward as indicated on the plat, and on a level with the location of the skeletons first found. It became evident at once that the material of which the mound was constructed was taken from the immediate neighborhood; it being composed of the same alluvial soil, full of the shells found on the surface, but in a much better state of preservation; but no arrow-heads, chippings of flints, or fragments of pottery, now covering the surface, were found. These would have been abundant if the monnd had been erected subsequently to the manufacture of the pottery and arrow-heads at that place. Single fragments of pottery were found, but these were painted and of much better quality than those found upon the surface.

The mound was composed of alternate layers of earth and ashes, showing that a surface of the size of the top, when finished, was kept substantially level, and raised only two to three feet at a time when fires were kindled, which must have been large or continued for a long time, as the amount of the ashes and fragments of charcoal abundantly indicate.

Near the centre of the mound rows of stake-holes were found, as far as followed, marking two sides of a rectangular parallelogram, which, continued, would have formed an enclosure around the centre. In some of these were the remains of the wood and bark; not enough to show the marks of tools if any had been used. They penetrated the natural surface of the ground to the depth of about two feet.

Here, and at about the same level as at No. 1, were found the skeletons of which the skull-bones and other parts are marked No. 2. They were apparently the remains of a youngish woman and two children, all so far decomposed that only the parts sent could be preserved. The larger skeleton was in such a position as a person would take if kneeling down, then sitting upon the feet, the Lands were brought to the head, and the body doubled down upon the knees. The head was toward the south. The remains of the children were found at the right side of this body, the bones mingled together.

About two feet directly under these, the skeleton, of which the skull is marked No. 3, was found in a similar position, it is said, (I was not present when it was taken out,) with the one above it. .

I attempt no description and indulge in no speculations in regard to these remains, as I have decided to forward them to you, for the examination of those who can compare them with other skulls, and are better qualified to make a proper use of them. They are unquestionably of the age of tho "mound builders."

I enclose also, marked No. 4, remains taken from between two flat stones near the surface of the mound at point marked No. 4. These are doubtless of Indian origin.

I enclose also a poor photograph of the mound after it had been cleared and ornamented by the gardener, showing his office, arbors, seats, &c., on the top, and guards and laborers in front. It will serve to give you the outline of the mound. [photograph not included/not seen/unknown]

It was my purpose to continue the examination further; to follow round the line at No. 1; ascertain whether other bodies were buried in a similar position; to look for a completion of the parallelogram at the centre; to carry a shaft upward to the top, and connect and measure the successive layers of earth and ashes; but the simultaneous firing of the heavy guns in the forts about Chattanooga, at the celebration of Lee s surrender, produced such a shock that the mound "caved in," burying tools, vegetables, &c., to be found, perhaps, by some future explorer, as proof of the intelligence of the race of the mound builders. No other works are found in the neighborhood, but I obtained verbal information of very many mounds, stone forts, rock inscriptions, &c., &c., in the State, a careful examination of which might throw much light upon the character of a race who have left no other records.


Ethnology of the Mound Builders, by Prof. M. C. Read
The Grave Creek Inscribed Stone. Prof. M. C. Read

Mr. M. C. Read of Hudson, Ohio

The pre-historic remains of Ohio are becoming rapidly obliterated by the plow, and soon an accurate description of them will be impossible. Explorations are often made of sepulchral mounds and other works by persons only partially qualified, and objects of interest found in them are kept for a time as curiosities and finally lost. These relics are of little scientific value except when gathered into large collections, and when the precise manner and place of their deposit are accurately preserved.
(Cincinnati Commercial Gazette, n.d. [July 1, 1884], Division of Mounds Exploration Records, Box 6, Folder "M. C. Read 1884")17

M. C. Read, Attorney, 1860 Hudson Ohio
Hudson Ohio Business Listings 1860
From George W. Hawes' Ohio Gazeeter and Business Directory; 1860-61
24 miles south-east from Cleveland. It is the seat of the Western Reserve College, and contains a flurishing seminary.

Historical Perspective
A review of Ohio's geological and soils literature indicates that the first descriptions of "joints" in clay tills were made in 1880 by M. C. Read, a lawyer-naturalist-geologist from Hudson, OH (White 1982).


Prof. J. S. Newbery requests the publishers to give at the end of this article the following testimonial of his sense of the eminent services of its author in the work of the Sanitary Commission. This we are pleased to do, from the conviction that it is fully deserved.
"Among the thousands of devoted men and women who gave their time, their strength and their hearts to the work of the Sanitary Commission, and who by their contributions and ministrations to the army in the field, and by inspiring and maintaining the patriotism of the people at home, hastened and perhaps secured the final triumph, none, rendered to the cause of humanity and liberty more faithful and efficient service than my friend and co-laborer, Mr. M. C. Read.

Historical collections of Ohio...: an encyclopedia of the state: ...
The Work of Ohio in the U. S. Sanitary Commission in the Civil War. by M. C. Read. pp 196-7
Henry Howe - 1902 - History

M. C. Read, an attorney of Hudson, Ohio, left a lucrative practice in February, 1862, and joined his brother, Dr. A. N. Read, in the work at Nashville; worked there for a short time and accompanied his brother to PIttsburg Landing, when he was assigned to duty at Hamburgh Landing, a few miles further up the river.
Here, while superintending the removal of stores, from the landing to the rooms of the Commission, he was prostrated by a sunstroke and compelled to return home. A few weeks in the Lake Superior region so far restored his health that he was able to return to Nashville, and was put in charge of the work at Murfreeshoro; thence he followed General Rosecrans' army to Bridgeport and finally reached Chattanooga in company with General Rosecrans and his staff. Here lie remained in charge of the work at this post until after Lee's surrender. He then returned home and rode over Ohio and West Virginia, selecting in all ihe principal cities Sanitary Commission Claim Agents, who were commissioned to collect claims and secure pensions for all soldiers applying to them, without charge to the soldier. This closed his work, except a short return to Chattanooga, to close out some unfinished business there. The effects of the sunstroke and subsequent labor and exposure have ever since seriously interfered with his professional work.

MC Read, of Hudson, Ohio, a member of the faculty of Western Reserve College; see also statement of Charles P. Read to Dr. F. C. Waite, Hudson, Dec. 25, 1908


The Problem of the Ohio Mounds, By Cyrus Thomas.
Chapter IV. The Cherokees As Mound Builders.

"... as it is shown in the same article that the Cherokees must have occupied the region from the time of its discovery up to its settlement by the whites it is more than probable they were the builders. ... Additional and perhaps still stronger evidence, if stronger be needed, that the people of this tribe were the authors of most of the ancient works in western North Carolina and eastern Tennessee is to be found in certain discoveries made by the Bureau assistants in Monroe County, Tenn. "


Archology of Ohio / by M. C. Read. / Matthew Canfield Read
by Read, M. C. 1825-1902.
Published 1888 Western Reserve Historical Society, Cleveland, Ohio.

M. C. Read, Late of the Geological Survey of Ohio; Trustee of Ohio Archaeological Society in charge at Phildelphia, 1876; and Assistant Commissioner at the Exposition at New Orleans in 1885-5.

Geology of Knox County, Ohio : from advance sheets of the Geological report of the Ohio State Survey, 1877 / by M.C. Read, Hudson, Ohio. Petroleum, and the Kokosing Oil Company....
by Read, M. C. 1825-1902.
Published 1878


By M. C. READ.

Page 188

MATTHEW CANFIELD READ was born in Williamsfield, Ashtabula County, Ohio, August 21, 1823, of New England parents, who were among the early pioneers. In those days of few books a circulating library of standard works gave him in his early boyhood a taste for solid reading, and a copy of Goldsmith's "Animated Nature," which at the age of ten years he had read and re-read till it was substantially memorized, exerted an important influence upon his subsequent studies; when twelve years of age his parents removed to Mecca, Trumbull county, where he remained working upon the farm and attending district school until eighteen years of age, when he commenced preparations for college at Western Reserve Seminary, in Farmington, Trumbull County, which was completed at Grand River Institute, in Austinburgh, Ashtabula county. He entered the Freshman class of Western Reserve College, Hudson, in 1841, and graduated in 1848, subsequently receiving the degree of A.M. from his alma mater.

The early bias given by Goldsmith's "Animated Nature" led him to devote much time during his preparatory and college course to the study of the natural sciences, and most of his leisure during this time was occupied in acquiring a knowledge of the fauna and flora, and the geology of the neighborhood. His vacations were given almost wholly to these studies, to which very little time was given in the prescribed course of study. The knowledge thus obtained in hours which ordinarily go to waste with the college student, was fully as valuable to him in after life as the regular college course. After graduation he taught school in Columbus and in Gustavus, Ohio, and read law with Chappee & Woodbury, of Jefferson, Ashtabula county.

He was married August, 1851, to Orissa E. Andrews, youngest daughter of William Andrews, Esq., of Homer, N. Y., and soon after was called to Hudson to edit The Family Visitor, published by Sawyer, Ingersoll & Co., and which was started by Profs. Kirtland and St. John, with the design of furnishing a family, scientific, and literary paper of a high order, containing nothing of the obnoxious matter found in many papers. During one year while editing this paper he had sole charge of the preparatory department of the Western Reserve College. After he had edited the paper for a little over two years its publication was suspended because of the financial failure of the publishers.

He then commenced the practice of' his profession as attorney in Summit county, and had acquired a lucrative practice when the war of the Rebellion commenced. Soon after the organization of the United States Sanitary Commission he was appointed a. general relief agent in that organization by Prof. Newberry, who was in charge of the Western department, and continued in the service of the Commission till the close of the war. A severe sunstroke after the battle of Pittsburgh Landing and subsequent exposure so impaired his health that he was never able to return to full practice in his profession. He served for a time as deputy-collector of internal revenue, and upon the organization of the geological survey of Ohio was appointed assistant geologist, and contributed largely to the final report. He has since done a large amount of work in the examination of mining property in the States and Territories and the Dominion of Canada, and contributed many articles to the scientific journals on ornithology, entomology, archaeology, geology, forestry, etc. He had charge of the archaeological exhibits of Ohio at the Centennial Exposition in Philadelphia, and the Centennial Exposition at New Orleans. Quite a full report made by him of the latter has recently been published by the Historical Society of Cleveland. For several years before the removal of the Western Reserve College to Cleveland he held the position in that institution of Lecturer on Zoology and Practical Geology. He still maintains his position at the bar, doing as much work as his health will permit, dividing his time between the practice of law and scientific studies and pursuits.


Hudson OH mayor Charles Read (1896-1898)
Matthew C. Read (1895-1901) when he served as Justice of the Peace.;;brand=default


Geology of Summit County. by Matthew C. Read, A. M.

Metal Bells
SITE NAME: Citico Mound (Mcspadden's Farm) [ Monroe Co., Tenn. ]
Fragment Of Shell Gorget (Half)
Shell Gorget (Mask)
Fragment Of Engraved Shell Gorget.
SITE NAME: Citico Mound (Mcspadden's Farm)
DATA SOURCE: NMNH - Anthropology Dept.

1. Rough draft of lecture attempting to show relationship of the Citico mound, near Chattanooga, Tennessee and the Castalian Springs site 30 miles NE of Nashville to sites in Georgia (Moundsville, Etowah, etc.), Tennessee, Kentucky, Illinois, Ohio, Missouri, and Arkansas. Show details

Creator: Myer, William Edward
Title: Rough draft of lecture attempting to show relationship of the Citico mound, near Chattanooga, Tennessee and the Castalian Springs site 30 miles NE of Nashville to sites in Georgia (Moundsville, Etowah, etc.), Tennessee, Kentucky, Illinois, Ohio, Missouri, and Arkansas.
Contained in: Numbered manuscripts 1850s-1980s (some earlier)
Physical_Description: 21 pages
Local_Number: NAA MS 2163
Archival_Repository: National Anthropological Archives

Format: HTMLPlain textDelimited
Subject: Rough draft of lecture attempting to show relationship of the Citico mound, near Chattanooga, Tennessee and the Castalian Springs site 30 miles NE of Nashville to sites in Georgia (Moundsville, Etowah, etc.), Tennessee, Kentucky, Illinois, Ohio, Missouri, and Arkansas.
Email to: [1 june 2011]

2. Miscellaneous photographs
Creator: Myer, William Edward
Title: Miscellaneous photographs
Contained in: Numbered manuscripts 1850s-1980s (some earlier)

Physical_Description: 510 photographs
250 negatives

Local_Number: NAA MS 2149
Archival_Repository: National Anthropological Archives

Item Information
Repository Call No.
National Anthropological Archives NAA MS 2149


Ear ornament

TECHNIQUES: Carved, hammered, repouss
CULTURE/PEOPLE: probably Late Mississippian Tradition (archaeological culture) (attributed)
OBJECT TYPE: Adornment/Jewelry
PLACE: Citico Mound and site, Tennessee River; Chattanooga; Hamilton County; Tennessee; USA
SITE NAME: Citico Mound and site, Tennessee River
DATE CREATED: AD 1400-1600
COLLECTION HISTORY: Collection history unknown; formerly in the collection of amateur archaeologist William E. Myer (1862-1923) and possibly excavated by him; acquired by MAI in 1926.
SEE MORE ITEMS IN: Archaeological Items
DATA SOURCE: National Museum of the American Indian


Miscellaneous photographs

CREATOR: Myer, William Edward
250 negatives
TYPE: Aerial photographs
PLACE: Citico Mound (Tennessee)
TOPIC: Canoes
Gordon Group
Great Mound Group
Fewkes Group (Tennessee)--archeology--mounds
Martin's Mound
Myer's Mound
Allen Image
Pack House
SUMMARY: Includes: Views near Rock Island, Tennessee. Tool handles, pipe, flaker, etc. Canoe, drawings of, and photo showing group with canoes. Scenes around Gordon Group (films). Great Mound Group, views of. Gordon Village Site, negative of. Harpath, Foot Mouth and prints of Piper. Fewkes Group, Negatives. Great Mound, view of. Citico, views of. Chattanooga relics. Great Mound Group, Airplane views of. Mound Bottom, and Great Mound. Obsidian Mills. Denny photos, and negatives. Views from North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Kentucky and Virginia. Photos for illustrations, Fewkes Group. House Circle (3). Fortress at Mouth of Harpeth River. Old Stone Fort
Lincoln County views. Martins Mound. Myers Mound. Allen Image. Pack House. Great Mound Group. Approximately 50 photos without titles
Manuscript 2149, National Anthropological Archives, Smithsonian Institution
Numbered manuscripts 1850s-1980s (some earlier)
National Anthropological Archives


Canis lupus lycaon

TAXONOMY: Canis lupus lycaon : Animalia : Chordata : Mammalia : Carnivora : Canidae
DATA SOURCE: NMNH - Vertebrate Zoology - Mammals Division

Canis lupus lycaon : Canidae : Carnivora : Mammalia : Chordata
Museum NMNH [National Museum of Natural History]
Catalog Number - USNM 200145
Kind of Object Specimen/Lot
Current Identification Canis lupus lycaon
Country United States
Province/State/Territory Tennessee
District/County Hamilton County
Precise Locality Citico Site
Collector(s) Moore, C. B.
Mammals Field Number 1
Sex Unknown
Preparation Skull
Notes Right ramus only. 1914-1915 ;
Record Last Modified 28 May 2010

Vertebrate Zoology Mammals Collections

The Eastern Wolf (Canis lupus lycaon) is traditionally considered to be a subspecies of the Gray Wolf (Canis lupus). However, recent molecular studies suggest that the eastern wolf is not a gray wolf subspecies, nor the result of gray wolf/coyote hybridization, but a distinct species (Canis lycaon)


Report on the McKenzie Mounds, Hamilton County, Tennessee July - December 1930

CREATOR: East Tennessee Archaeological Society Chattanooga
Smithsonian Institution Bureau of American Ethnology Cooperative Ethnological Project
35 illustrations
9 drawings
TYPE: Archival materials
DATE: July - December 1930
CITE AS: Manuscript 2004, National Anthropological Archives, Smithsonian Institution
SEE MORE ITEMS IN: Numbered manuscripts 1850s-1980s (some earlier)
DATA SOURCE: National Anthropological Archives

Item Information
Repository Call No.
National Anthropological Archives NAA MS 2004

Format: HTML Plain text Delimited
Subject: Report on the McKenzie Mounds, Hamilton County, Tennessee July - December 1930