Henry C. Shetrone

From Ohio History Central
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Henry Shetrone

Henry Clyde Shetrone was born in Fairfield County, Ohio in 1876. He became interested in archaeology while working as a reporter and writing stories about William C. Mills' astonishing discoveries at the Adena Mound and other sites. He became friends with Mills who eventually hired him in 1913 as an assistant.

In 1921, when Mills became the Society's first director, Shetrone was appointed as the new curator of archaeology. He continued Mills' vigorous program of research and publication. His many contributions to archaeology include major excavations at the Mound City Group, Hopewell Mound Group, and Seip Mound. Following Mills' example, reports of these excavations appeared promptly in the Ohio Archaeological and Historical Society Quarterly. Shetrone's most important work, The Mound-Builders, published in 1930, was a comprehensive synthesis of Ohio's mound-building cultures in relation to what was then known about the archaeology of eastern North America.

When Mills died in 1928, Shetrone succeeded him as director of the Ohio History Connection. Although his administrative duties increasingly kept him from fieldwork, Shetrone continued to make contributions to archaeology. As director, he focused his efforts on preserving archaeological sites and promoting public education about Ohio's Native American heritage.

Shetrone retired in 1947. He was appointed Director Emeritus of the Ohio History Connection and held that position until his death in 1954. Although Shetrone had no formal academic training in archaeology, he had become one of the most productive and respected archaeologists in North America.

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