Henry Hamilton traced the design decorations on the Spiro Mound artifacts by placing tracing paper on top of the artifact.

Engraved shell gorget fragment traced by Hamilton (1952: 70, Plate 88d); he identified the iconography as dancers with bows. The original artifact is now in the collection of the Smithsonian Institution.


Engraved shell cup fragment traced by Hamilton (1952: Plate 134a); he described this image as an a wolf and noted that the height of the shell fragment is 4 5/8 inches = 11.7 cm. This artifacts is now in the collection of the Smithsonian Institution.

Engraved shell cup fragment traced by Hamilton (1952: Plate 137a); he described the iconography as geometric designs. He noted that the width of the shell as 9 3/16 inches = 23.3 cm. Today, the artifact is in the collection of the Smithsonian Institution.


Engraved shell gorget fragment traced by Hamilton (1952: Figure 136b). The original artifact is now in the collection of the Smithsonian Institution.


Engraved shell gorget fragment traced by Hamilton (1952: Figure 136b). The original artifact is now in the collection of the Smithsonian Institution. [There are a few slight differences - there could be two similar shell cups or Hamilton could made small errors when inking his tracings.]


Engraved shell cup fragment described by Hamilton (1952: 70, Plate 111) as the World Symbol and four composite animal-snakes; the whelk shell measured 6.5 x 9 inches (16.5 x 23 cm).


Engraved shell cup fragment described by Hamilton (1952: 70, Plate 110) as winged, blumed rattlesnakes; fragment measured 7 x 11 inches (18 x 28 cm).


Engraved shell cup fragment traced by Hamilton (1952: Plate 118). I see this as a deer dancer carrying a bow in his left hand and wearing a necklace of whelk shells.


Engraved shell cup fragment traced by Hamilton (1952: Plate 120a); he described the iconography as a dancer holding a mask or head. The shell fragment measures 3 3/8 inches = 8.5 cm. My interest is is more with the right figure wearing a gorget and necklace with a prominent whelk shell pendant.


Engraved shell cup fragment traced by Hamilton (1952: Plate 99a); he identified the iconography as an eagle dancer and that the length of the shell is 13 inches = 33 cm.

Hamilton, Henry W.
1952 The Spiro Mound. Missouri Archaeologist 14.


Website created 25 February 2014
Website updated 22 June 2020