Here in the Shawnee Reservation is found an Indian mound which was probably excavated in 1884 by the Smithsonian Institution. The results of the archaeologists' work suggest that the mound was built between A.D. 1 and 500 by the Hopewellian mound builders. At the base of the mound, the excavators found a crematory basin, and higher up in the mound, they found at least four skeletons.
One of the largest groups of mounds in the United States once existed in Dunbar, Institute, & South Charleston. In 1883-84, Smithsonian workers recorded 50 mounds and at least 10 earthworks (low earth embankments in geometric forms). Great Smith Mound, 35 ft. high and 175 in diameter, stood in Dunbar. The mounds in Shawnee Reservation & downtown South Charleston are all that remain today of these prehistoric works.