By Richard Balthazar
While researching for my first book about Indian mounds, I perused countless photographs of ‘moundbuilder’ artifacts. Rarely were the photographs well-lit, in focus, taken from the best angle, or informative of fine detail. Both to study them and to create informative images, I took to making line drawings of artifacts found in mounds, often comparing various photographs of the same object, and at least once triangulating between differing views (actually applying my brief drafting training from so long ago). I must also admit to ‘rectifying’ a couple of them, either by reconstructing missing pieces or by correcting for symmetry. So sue me.
Many of these artifact drawings were used in my book as an appendix, and now in this gallery the dozens of drawings omitted can be put out there for you to see as well. Download whatever grabs your fancy. While these hundred or so artifacts might well be representative of the mound cultures, the collection would be more worthwhile if it became a compendium. There’s not much way anymore that I’m personally going to work on expanding it, but there’s nothing stopping you guys out there from emailing me (rbalthazar at msn.com) your drawings of other authentic pieces. You’ll be credited for anything included. (The above-mentioned rare photograph might be acceptable.)