The bulk of these papers document the professional life of Carol Kramer, a leading figure in ethnoarchaeology, specializing in the Middle East and South Asia. She was also a major advocate for the professional development of women in anthropology and archaeology.
Dating 1943-2002, the collection includes field notes, writings, correspondence, daily planners, teaching files, photographs, sound recordings, maps, computer disks, and botanical specimens. Her ethnoarchaeological research in "Shahabad" (a.k.a. "Aliabad") in Iran and in Rajasthan, India is well-represented in the collection.
Scope and Contents Note:
The bulk of these papers document the professional life of Carol Kramer. The collection contains field notes, writings, correspondence, daily planners, teaching files, photographs, sound recordings, maps, computer disks, and botanical specimens. Also in the collection are her notes and grade transcripts as a college and graduate student.
Her ethnoarchaeological research in "Shahabad" (a.k.a. "Aliabad") in Iran and in Rajasthan, India is well-represented in the collection in the form of her notes, maps, writings, and photographs. In addition, there are plant specimens that Kramer collected in Iran. Also among her research files are photocopies of her field notes from her work in Guatemala. Although her field notes from the Hasanlu Project are absent, the collection does contain a few photographs and some notes and correspondence from her research for her article on the Hasanlu Project's excavations at Dalma Tepe. In addition, the collection contains "A System of Pottery Classification According to Shape," a paper by Robert H. Dyson, Jr. and T. Cuyler Young, Jr. for the Hasanlu Project. Materials relating to the Godin Project consist of correspondence from 1996 and 1997 and a 1973 group photo.
Copies of her monographs are present in the collection along with drafts, figures, and correspondence for her published writings and dissertation. Many of the papers that she presented at professional meetings, seminars, and special lectures can also be found in the collection, including her 1994 AAA Distinguished Lecture, "The Quick and the Dead: Ethnography in and for Archaeology." In addition, there are two cassette tape recordings of Kramer presenting her paper, "Ceramics in Two Indian Cities," and the subsequent group discussion at the 1985 School of American Research Advanced Seminar, "Social and Behavioral Sources of Ceramic Variability." Also of special interest are materials documenting her involvement in the 1981 "Resolution to Implement the 1972 American Anthropological Association Resolution on Fair Practices in Employment of Women."
Kramer's professional correspondence is spread throughout the collection, mixed together with other documents, filed by subject. Much of her later correspondence is in the form of e-mail printouts. Letters of reference she wrote can also be found on her computer disks, which consist of several 3.50" and 5.25" floppy disks. Other files on the disks include materials for her books and articles, research data, her performance evaluations files, notes for courses she taught, and her will.
It should be noted that Kramer was briefly married during the 1960s and 1970s to Christopher Hamlin, who was a fellow graduate student at the University of Pennsylvania. Thus, she is referred to as Carol Hamlin in some of the documents from that period.
1971 -- "The 1971 Excavations at Seh Gabi, Iran," Archaeology, Vol. 26, pp. 224-227.
1974 -- "The Early Second Millennium Ceramic Assemblage of Dinkha Tepe," Ibid. with Louis D. Levine. "The Godin Project: Seh Gabi," Iran XII, pp. 211-213. "Seh Gabi, 1973," Archaeology, Vol. 27, pp. 274-277
1977 -- "Pots and Peoples," Mountains and Lowlands: Essays in the Archaeology of Greater Mesopotamia, edited by L.D. Levine and T.C. Young, Jr. Malibu: Undena Publications
1979 -- editor. Ethnoarchaeology: Implications of Ethnography for Archaeology. New York: Colombia University Press.
1980 -- "Estimating Prehistoric Populations: an Ethnoarchaeological Approach," L'Archéologie de I'Iraq, edited by Marie-Thérèse Barrelet, Paris: Centre National de la Rechere Scientifique.
1982 -- Village Ethnoarchaeology: Rural Iran in Archaeological Perspective. New York: Academic Press.
1988 -- with Miriam Stark. "The Status of Women in Archaeology," Anthropology Newsletter. Vol. 29, No. 9, pp. 11-12.
1991 -- Co-editor with W.A. Longcre. "Ethnoarchaeology," special issue of Expedition "Ceramics in Two Indian Cities," Ceramic Ethnoarchaeology, edited by William Longacre. Tucson: University of Arizona Press.
1997 -- Pottery in Rajasthan: Ethnoarchaeology in Two Indian Cities. Washington, D.C.: Smithsonian Institution Press.
2001 -- with Nicholas David. Ethnoarchaeology in Action. Cambridge (U.K.): Cambridge University Press
1943 -- Born May 3 in New York, New York
1964 -- Earns B.A. from The City University of New York
1967, 1969 -- Site supervisor of archaeological excavations at Godin Tepe, Iran for the Royal Ontario Museum's Godin Project
1968 -- Site supervisor of archaeological excavations at Dinkha Tepe and Se Girdan, Iran for University of Pennsylvania-Metropolitan Museum of Art's Hasanlu Project.
1970 -- Ethnoarchaeological research with an urban potter in Antigua, Guatemala
1971 -- Receives Ph.D. in Anthropology from University of Pennsylvania 1971 Hired as Assistant Professor at City University of New York Assistant director of archaeological excavations at Seh Gabi, Iran for Godin Project
1973 -- Assistant director of archaeological excavations at Seh Gabi, Iran for Godin Project
1975 -- Ethnoarchaeological research in Iranian village
1977 -- Associate Professor, Lehman College and the Graduate Center, CUNY
1980 -- Ethnoarchaeological research in Rajasthan, India
1982-1984 -- Ethnoarchaeological research in Rajasthan, India
1985 -- Visiting Professor at Yale University
1986-1988 -- Visiting Professor at University of Arizona
1990 -- Hired as Professor at University of Arizona
1994 -- Presents distinguished lecture to Archaeology Section of American Anthropological Association
1995 -- Site supervisor of archaeological excavations at Gordion, Turkey
1996 -- Ethnoarchaeological research near Gordion, Turkey
1999 -- Receives "Squeaky Wheel Award" from COSWA/American Anthropological Association
2002 -- Died on December 3 at the age of 59
Carol Kramer was a leading figure in ethnoarchaeology, specializing in the Middle East and South Asia. She was also a major advocate for the professional development of women in anthropology and archaeology.
She was born on May 3, 1943 in New York City to Aaron Kramer, a poet and professor of English at Dowling College, and Katherine Kolodny Kramer, a social worker. She attended the High School of Music and Art and earned her B.A. at the City University of New York in 1964. Kramer initially studied archaeology in the graduate program at the University of Chicago, but transferred to the University of Pennsylvania after a year, where she earned her doctorate in 1971. Her dissertation was entitled "The Habur Ware Ceramic Assemblage of Northern Mesopotamia: An Analysis of its Distribution."
In 1968, she was a site supervisor for University of Pennsylvania and Metropolitan Museum of Art's joint archaeological excavations at Dinkha Tepe and Se Girdan, Iran as part of the Hasanlu Project, directed by Robert H. Dyson, Jr. She also served as site supervisor (1967, 1969) and Assistant Director (1971, 1973) for the Royal Ontario Museum's archaeological excavation at Godin Tepe, known as the Godin Project, which was directed by Louis D. Levine and T. Cuyler Young, Jr. In 1970, she conducted her first ethnoarchaeological fieldwork under Ruben Reina, working with an urban potter in Antigua, Guatemala.
Kramer returned to Iran in 1975 to conduct ethnoarchaeological research in a Kurdish village in the Hamadān Province. Her work there resulted in several papers, including "An Archaeological View of a Contemporary Kurdish Village: Domestic Architecture, Household Size, and Wealth," published in Ethnoarchaeology: Implications of Ethnography for Archaeology (1979), which she edited. She expanded upon her paper in her 1982 book, Village Ethnoarchaeology: Rural Iran in Archaeological Perspective.
For her next project, she intended to study pottery communities in Iran, but the outbreak of the Iranian Revolution forced her to change her plans, and she decided to shift her location to India. In 1980 and 1982-1984, she studied ceramic production and distribution in Rajasthan. Articles produced from her research include "Ceramics in Two Indian Cities" (1991), "Ceramics in Rajasthan: Distribution and Scalar Variation" (1992), "A Tale of Two Cities: Ceramic Ethnoarchaeology in Rajasthan" (1994), and "Social and Locational Contexts of Ceramic Distribution in Rajasthan" (1995). She also authored Pottery in Rajasthan: Ethnoarchaeology in Two Indian Cities, published in 1997.
Kramer returned to the field in 1995, serving as site supervisor for archaeological excavations in Gordion, Turkey. She returned the next year to explore the possibility of conducting research in Yassihöyük and other villages near Gordion as an extension of her village ethnoachaeology research in Iran.
In 2001, Kramer further contributed to the field of ethnoarchaeology with the publication of Ethnoarchaeology in Action, which she co-wrote with Nicholas David. The landmark book is the first comprehensive study of ethnoarchaeology.
In addition to her work in ethnoarchaeology, Kramer was also involved in promoting the professional advancement of women in anthropology. In 1980, Kramer and her colleagues (Roger Sanjek, Rayna Rapp, Carole Vance, and Glenn Peterson) drew up a resolution to implement the 1972 Resolution on Fair Practices in Employment of Women. They campaigned to raised funds and support for the resolution, which called for the American Anthropological Association (AAA) to censure universities that hired or promoted a low percentage of women. Due to their work, the resolution passed and AAA censured five departments in 1981. In 1988, she and Miriam Stark published, "The Status of Women in Archeology," a study of gender equity in archaeology. They looked at gender differences in the number of graduate students, PhD recipients, and funding recipients as well as in faculty composition. Kramer was also a member of the Committee on the Status of Women in Anthropology (COSWA) from 1973 to 1975 and host and discussion leader at the COSWA Roundtable on professional skills and the female archaeologist at the 1998 annual meeting of the Society for American Archaeology (SAA).
In 1999, Kramer was awarded the Squeaky Wheel Award by COSWA in recognition of her contributions to equity for women in anthropology. She also delivered the 1994 Distinguished Lecture to the Archaeology Section for the AAA, "The Quick and the Dead: Ethnography in and for Archaeology." In 2003, she was posthumously awarded the SAA's Award for excellence in Archaeological Analysis.
From 1971 to 1990, Kramer taught at Queens College and later Lehman College and the Graduate Center at the City University of New York, during which time she was a visiting professor at Yale University (1985). She also taught at the University of Arizona (1986-1988) as a recipient of a National Science Foundation Visiting Professorship for Women. In 1990, she joined the faculty of the University of Arizona, where she taught until her death.
Kramer passed away at the age of 59 on December 3, 2002.
Rothschild, Nan A. "Carol Kramer (1943-2002)." American Anthropologist 106.1 (2004): 214-220.
Thompson, Raymond H. and Norman Yoffee. "Carol Kramer." Anthropology News 44.3 (2003): 30.
These papers were donated to the National Anthropological Archives by Carol Kramer's sister, Laura Kramer.
The Carol Kramer papers are open for research.
Materials with student grades and social security numbers have been restricted. The dates that the restricted items will be made available for access range from 2047 to 2064. Access to Kramer's computer disks is also restricted. Please consult an archivist for more information.
Watson, James B. (James Bennett), 1918-2009 Search this
52.5 Linear feet (123 boxes)
47 sound recordings
Papua New Guinea
Mato Grosso (Brazil : State)
Papua New Guinea -- Social life and customs
This collection contains the professional papers of cultural anthropologist James B. Watson, and documents his fieldwork in Papua New Guinea, Brazil, and Del Norte, Co., as well as his teaching career at the University of Washington. Included are field notes, lecture notes, correspondence, maps, photographs, books, articles, journals, grant proposals, surveys, data punch cards, conference materials, and sound recordings.
Scope and Contents:
This collection is comprised of the professional papers of James B. Watson, the bulk of which relate to his research and academic work on the Eastern Highlands of Papua New Guinea. The series are Research, Writings, Correspondence, Professional Activities, University Files, Biographical Files, Maps, Photographs, and Sound Recordings.
The Research series contains Watson's research on Hopi food classification systems in Arizona, Cayua acculturation in Brazil, social stratification between English-speaking and Spanish-speaking residents of Del Norte, Co., numerous research projects in Papua New Guinea, and gift exchange theories.
The Arizona, Hopi Food Classification Systems subseries consists of his research among the Hopi in Arizona, primarily on their food classication systems. Included are field notes and reports.
The Mato Grosso, Brazil and Cayua Acculturation subseries consists of research materials conducted while Watson was working as an assistant professor in Sao Paulo. Included are field notes, bibliographies, a journal, and a language notebook primarily regarding his research on culture change among the Cayua.
The Del Norte, Colorado Surveys subseries contains material related to research conducted in the summers of 1949 and 1950 as part of a study on social stratification between English-speaking and Spanish-speaking residents of Del Norte. Included are datasets from several community surveys on education, occupations, business, and cultural attitudes, along with research notes and background materials.
The Papua New Guinea subseries consists of research materials on the Eastern Highlands of Papua New Guinea. Included are field notes, language materials, bibliographies, grant documents and research proposals, genealogy data, long reports and patrol reports, data punch cards, and TAT (thematic apperception test) protocols. There is material from several research projects including the Committee on New Guinea Studies (CONGS), the Kainantu Blood Group Study, and the New Guinea Religions Project. Watson's wife, Virginia Drew Watson, also has research material in this series. Language documentation include lexicons and notes about Agarabi, Auyana, Awa, Tairora, Gadsup, and Tok Pisin.
The subsubseries Micro-evolution Studies Project (MES) consists of related Papua New Guinea research as part of this multi-year project. Material included is correspondence, financial documents, memorandums and planning documents, grant proposals, language files, and work papers.
The Gift Exchange Theories subseries consists of Watson's research on gift exchange theories, primarily as they relate to small autonomous peoples. The material consists of research notes, paper ideas, bibliographies, and grant applications.
The Other Research subseries consists of papers and research that are not easily catagorized. Included are subject files on perception, notes and critiques of Marshal Sahlins's Stone Age Economics, and a research project by Watson studying innovation in high school social studies curriculum.
The Writings series primarily consists of journal articles produced over the duration of his career. Included are research notes, drafts, and some correspondence. A print copy is included where possible. There is significant material related to his book Tairora Culture, including chapter drafts, outlines, and reader comments. The writings by others are primarily annotated copies of articles, rare and small print-run items, or manuscripts by others sent to Watson for comment.
The Correspondence series contains professional and personal correspondence with Watson's colleagues and contemporaries in the field, including J. David Cole, Terence Hays, Paula Brown-Glick, Richard Lieban, Howard P. McKaughan, Harold Nelson, Kerry Pataki-Schweizer, Kenneth E. Read, Sterling Robbins, and Roy Wagner. Topics include his academic career, student dissertations, research grants and fellowships, and research related to Papua New Guinea, and in particular the Micro-evolution Studies project.
The Professional Activities series primarily consists of conference notes, papers, presentations, and symposium documents. Included are materials for the American Anthropological Association, the Association for Social Anthropology in Oceania, the Pacific Sciences Conference, as well as symposiums held at the East-West Center in Honolulu, Hawaii. Some of the files are related to specific symposiums Watson attended or helped to organize, the bulk of which are related to Papua New Guinea. Also included are Watson's lecture notes, and materials related to the United Nations West Irian Development Plan
The University Files series contains material related to Watson's academic career. The bulk of the files are course materials from the classes he taught at the Univesity of Washington, which include lecture notes, syllabi, exams, and student papers. Other materials includes student dissertation files and some of Watson's course work from the University of Chicago.
The Biographical Files series includes numerous editions of his curriculum vitae and bibliographies.
The Maps series contains maps used in Watson's research, which includes Brazil; Del Norte, Co.; and Papua New Guinea. The bulk are maps of Papua New Guinea, and include published maps, annotated maps, hand-drawn maps, patrol reports, and linguistic maps.
The Photographs series contains photographs of Watson's fieldwork and professional career. The bulk of his fieldwork photographs are from Del Norte, Co. and Papua New Guinea. The Del Norte photographs include aerial images along with photographs of residents, houses, and cultural activities. The photographs from Papua New Guinea include images of a taro garden, a woman before and at her marriage ceremony, and images of tools found at an excavation site near the Wahgi Valley.
The sound recordings contain seven identified recordings made in the Papua New Guinea Eastern Highlands, Kainantu District during James and Virginia Watson's first trip, 1954-1955. Also included are 31 recordings of lectures and classes by James Watson and others, two recordings of popular music, and six reels recorded at the Pacific Science Congress in Tokyo in 1966. The remaining 23 uncataloged recordings are unidentified or partially identified.
Please see individual series descriptions in the finding aid for additional information.
This collection is arranged in 9 series:
Series1: Research, 1933-1993
Series 2: Writings, 1904-1995
Series 3: Correspondence, 1933-1994
Series 4: Professional Activities, 1944-1998
Series 5: University Files, 1939-1991
Series 6: Biographical Files, 1941-1991
Series 7: Maps, circa 1920s-1970
Series 8: Photographs, circa 1942-1977
Series 9: Sound Recordings, 1954-1984
James B. Watson (1918-2009) was a cultural anthropologist and university professor. He is primarily known for his ethnographic studies of the Eastern Highlands of Papua New Guinea, with a concentration on acculturation. He taught at the University of Washington, was the prinicipal investigator for the Micro-evolution Studies project (MES), and the author of numerous journal articles and books.
Watson was born in Chicago, Ill., and raised in Bangor, Maine. He studied anthropology at the University of Chicago, earning his B.A. in 1941; his M.A. in 1945; and his Ph.D. in 1948. Fred Eggan acted as his advisor while he was pursuing his doctorate. He began his teaching career as an assistant professor at the Escala Livre de Sociologia e Politica, Sao Paulo (1944-1945); Beloit College (1945-1946); University of Oklahoma (1946-1947); and as an associate professor at Washington University in St. Louis (1947-1955). He then became a full professor of anthropology at the University of Washington (1955-1987), where he spent the majority of his career.
His ethnographic research began with his fieldwork among the Hopi in Arizona in 1942. He researched Hopi food classification systems, which would become the subject of his master's thesis. Watson would next study the effects of acculturation among the Cayua people in Mato Grosso, Brazil in 1943-1945. This research would become the basis of his dissertation, later to be published as Cayua Culture Change: A Study in Acculturation and Methodology. His wife, anthropologist Virginia Drew Watson, accompanied him and conducted her own research. While at Washington University, he directed fieldwork in the summers of 1949 and 1950 in Del Norte, Co., conducting several community surveys on education, occupations, business, and cultural attitudes. These surveys were part of a larger study on social stratification between English-speaking and Spanish-speaking residents of Del Norte.
Watson is most noted for his work in the Papua New Guinea Highlands, where he was one of the first generation of Highland ethnographers. Along with Virginia Drew Watson, he studied the Kainantu peoples of the Eastern Highlands including the Tairora, the Gadsup, the Auyana, and the Awa. He was involved in several research projects, including the Committee on New Guinea Studies (CONGS), The Kainantu Blood Group Study, and the New Guinea Religions Project.
He was also the principal investigator for the Micro-evolution Studies project (1959-1968) where he directed a team of researchers examining the interconnections of the Kainantu peoples from the perspectives of ethnography, linguistics, archaeology, and physical anthropology. Other MES researchers include Kenneth E. Read, Robert A. Littlewood, Howard McKaughan, Kerry J. Pataki-Schweizer, and Sterling Robbins. This research on Papua New Guinea is best described in his book Tairora Culture: Contingency and Pragmatism (1983).
He was professionally active, attending and organizing sessions at annual meetings for the American Anthropological Association (AAA) and the Association for Social Anthropology in Oceania (ASAO). He also organized symposiums at the East-West Center in Honolulu, Hawaii. Additionally, he served as a consultant to the United Nations on their West Irian Development Plan in 1967. Watson retired from teaching in 1987, but continued to publish and remain involved in AAA and ASAO. He died in 2009.
1999 Westermark, George. ASAO Honorary Fellow: James B. Watson. Association for Social Anthropology in Oceania Newsletter 104: 21
1918 -- Born on August 10 in Chicago, Illinois
1941 -- B.A. in anthropology, University of Chicago Lecturer, University of Chicago
1941-1942 -- Fieldwork: Hopi
1943 -- Married Virgina Drew Fieldwork: Mato Grosso, Brazil
1943-1945 -- Fieldwork: Brazil
1944-1945 -- Assistant Professor, Escala Livre de Sociologia e Politica, Sao Paulo, Brazil
1945 -- M.A. in anthropology, University of Chicago
1945-1946 -- Assistant Professor, Beloit College
1946-1947 -- Assistant Professor, University of Oklahoma
1947-1955 -- Associate Professor, Washington University in St. Louis
1948 -- Ph.D. in anthropology, University of Chicago
1949-1950 -- Director, Washington University summer field project
1949-1950 -- Fieldwork: Del Norte, Colorado
1953-1955 -- Fieldwork: Eastern Highlands, Papua New Guinea
1955-1987 -- Professor of Anthropology, University of Washington
1959 -- Fieldwork: Papua New Guinea and Netherlands New Guinea
1959-1968 -- Principal Investigator, New Guinea Micro-evolution Studies Project
1963-1964 -- Fieldwork: Eastern Highlands, Papua New Guinea
1966-1967 -- Senior Specialist, Institute of Advanced Projects, East-West Center
1967 -- Consultant for United Nations Development Programme, West Irian
1967 -- Fieldwork: West Irian (Indonesia)
1987 -- Retired from teaching at University of Washington
2009 -- Died on November 12
The National Anthropological Archives also holds the papers of Virginia D. Watson.
Mandeville Special Collections Library, UCSD holds the Micro-evolution Project Papers, MSS 436.
These papers were donated to the National Anthropological Archives by James Watson's daughter, Anne Watson, in 2003.
Some research proposals not authored by Watson are restricted until 2083.
220 Linear feet (The total extent of the collection is 191.41 linear feet (consisting of 473 document boxes and 2 record boxes) plus 254 sound recordings, 94 computer disks, 42 card file boxes, 85 oversize folders, 9 rolled items, 18 binder boxes, and 3 oversize boxes. Of the total extent, 4.79 linear feet (14 boxes) are restricted.)
This collection contains the professional papers of William Curtis Sturtevant and documents his activities as Curator of North American Ethnology at the National Museum of Natural History, his work as the editor-in-chief of the Handbook of North American Indians, his research among the Seminole and Iroquois people, and other professional activities. The collection is comprised of books, sound recordings, research and field notes, realia, artifacts, clippings, microfilm, negatives, slides, photographs, manuscripts, correspondence, memorandums, card files, exhibition catalogs, articles, and bibliographies.
Scope and Contents:
This collection contains the professional papers of William Curtis Sturtevant and documents his activities as Curator of North American Ethnology at the Smithsonian Institution's National Museum of Natural History, his work as the editor-in-chief of the Handbook of North American Indians, his research among the Seminole and Iroquois people, and his involvement in various professional activities. The collection is comprised of research and field notes, sound recordings, realia, clippings, negatives, slides, prints, published and unpublished writings, correspondence, memorandums, conference papers and meeting notes, card files, exhibition catalogs, articles, bibliographies, student files such as class notes and papers from Sturtevant's years as an anthropology student, teaching materials including lecture notes and exams, daily planners, passports, military records, artwork including prints and lithographs, maps, and computer files.
The materials in this collection document Sturtevant's career as a preeminent North American ethnologist, museum curator, university professor, his role as General Editor of the Handbook of North American Indians, and his contributions to the field of Anthropology. From his early work with the Seminole Indians of Florida to his forays into Burma, and his decades-long study of how Native Americans have been depicted in artistic and popular culture, Sturtevant's diverse intellectual interests are represented in his research files. A copious note taker, Sturtevant captured his observations and opinions of everything from meetings with colleagues to museum exhibits. Sturtevant's commitment to the anthropological profession can be found in the notes and programs of the many conferences, symposiums, and lecture series he attended and at which he presented. He also held numerous leadership positions in various professional associations and sat on the board of directors/trustees for several cultural organizations including Survival International and the Museum of the American Indian-Heye Foundation. Sturtevant was respected for his vast knowledge of indigenous peoples and he received a voluminous amount of correspondence from colleagues who often included copies of their papers and grant proposals. He kept many of these works, which, it appears he used as reference material. Sturtevant's own work is reflected in his writings; he published over 200 scholarly papers, articles, and books.
This collection is organized in 14 series: 1. Correspondence, 1951-2008; 2. Research Files, 1851, 1860s, 1880s, 1890, 1939-2006; 3. Writings, 1952-2006; 4. Professional Activities, 1952-2006; 5. Smithsonian, 1954-2008; 6. Handbook of North American Indians, 1971-2007; 7. Biographical Files, 1933-2007; 8. Student Files, 1944-1985; 9. Subject Files, 1902-2002; 10. Photographs, 1927-2004; 11. Artwork, 1699-1998; 12. Maps, 1949-1975; 13. Sound Recordings, 1950-2000; 14. Computer Files, 1987-2006.
William C. Sturtevant (1926-2007), preeminent North American ethnologist, museum curator, and university professor, was best known for his contributions to Seminole ethnology, as curator of North American Ethnology in the Department of Anthropology at the Smithsonian Institution's National Museum of Natural History, and for his work as the general editor of the Handbook of North American Indians.
Sturtevant's passion for studying Native peoples began at a young age. In third grade "after a class on American Indians, he asked his father what kind of people study Indians, and his father replied, 'Anthropologists.' Sturtevant decided then that he would make anthropology his career" (Merrill 11). After graduating with honors from the University of California at Berkeley in 1949, Sturtevant went on to Yale University to complete his graduate work in anthropology. When it came time to decide on what area of North America he should focus his research, one of his faculty members at Yale, Irving Rouse, "suggested he consider the Seminoles of south Florida. By the end of his first fieldwork season, Sturtevant was convinced that the dearth of ethnographic information about these Seminoles and their status as one of the least acculturated of all North American Indian societies justified ethnographic research among them and offered the possibility of making an important contribution to North American ethnology" (Merrill 13). Sturtevant spent the summers of 1950 and 1951 conducting preliminary fieldwork among the Mikasuki-speaking Seminole and in 1952 he took up temporary residence at Big Cypress Reservation to undertake research for his dissertation, "The Mikasuki Seminole: Medical Beliefs and Practices." This work focused on Seminole medicine, but also included Sturtevant's analysis of Seminole worldview, religion, history, inter-ethnic relations, material culture, economy, kinship, language, and social organization.
In 1954, while he was finishing his dissertation, Sturtevant made the transition from student of anthropology to professional anthropologist. He was hired as an instructor in Yale's Anthropology Department and began his career in museum work as an assistant curator of anthropology at the Yale Peabody Museum. After receiving his PhD from Yale in 1955, Sturtevant moved on to the Smithsonian Institution, where he accepted a position as a research anthropologist at the Bureau of American Ethnology (BAE). This position afforded Sturtevant the chance to continue to explore his many research interests in ways that a full time professorship or museum curatorship could not. Over the next ten years he studied the Catawba in South Carolina; the Seneca and Cayuga nations of the Iroquois League in New York, Oklahoma, and Ontario; continued his work with the Seminole; visited European museums to examine early ethnographic examples and possible European prototypes of eastern North American Indian material culture; and spent a year in Burma. In 1963, Sturtevant and his wife, Theda Maw, the daughter of a prominent Burmese family, took their three young children to Burma so that they could visit with Maw's family. Sturtevant took this as an opportunity to branch out from his Native American research and spent the year visiting neighborhoods in Rangoon and villages in the surrounding countryside, examining archival materials, studying the Burmese language, learning about Burmese clothing and other aspects of the culture, and taking photographs. He also collected 386 items of clothing and other objects for the Smithsonian.
When Sturtevant returned from Burma, he found the BAE had been dissolved. In 1965, he was transferred from the now-defunct BAE to the Department of Anthropology at the National Museum of Natural History (NMNH), where he became curator of North American Ethnology, a position he held for the next forty-two years. During his tenure at NMNH Sturtevant oversaw all the North American ethnology collections, planned exhibitions, served on committees, and sponsored interns and fellows. One of Sturtevant's primary duties at NMNH was serving as the General Editor of the Handbook of North American Indians, "a major multi-volume reference work summarizing anthropological, linguistic, and historical knowledge about native peoples north of Mexico" (Jackson). Each volume was designed to represent a geographic or topical area of Americanist study. As General Editor, Sturtevant selected volume editors, chapter authors, oversaw office staff, and proofread manuscripts over the course of production.
Besides focusing on the Handbook, much of Sturtevant's time was taken up by responsibilities he held outside the Institution. Sturtevant was extremely involved in professional anthropological associations and held many leadership positions. Fresh out of graduate school, he began a three-year term on the Board of Governors of the Anthropological Society of Washington in 1957. He later became a member of the executive committee of the Florida Anthropological Society, served as book-review editor and associate editor of the American Anthropologist from 1962-1968, was a member of the American Anthropological Association's Committee on Anthropological Research in Museums and was both vice president and president of the committee once it became the Council for Museum Anthropology, was on the American Anthropological Association's Committee on Archives, served three terms on the Board of Trustees of the Museum of the American Indian-Heye Foundation from 1976-1982 and was appointed to a fourth term between 1984 and 1986, and sat on the Board of Directors of Survival International from 1982-1988. He was President of the American Society for Ethnohistory, the American Ethnological Society, the American Anthropological Association, and the Anthropological Society of Washington. Sturtevant also taught classes at Johns Hopkins University as an adjunct professor in the Department of Anthropology, served as a consultant on exhibits at other museums, and reviewed manuscripts for scholarly publications.
Sturtevant remained active in the profession throughout his later years. After divorcing Theda Maw in 1986, he married Sally McLendon, a fellow anthropologist, in 1990 and they undertook several research projects together. Sturtevant was recognized for his dedication and contributions to the field of anthropology in 1996 when he was awarded an honorary doctorate in humane letters by Brown University, and in 2002 when his colleagues published a festschrift in his honor, Anthropology, History, and American Indians: Essays in Honor of William Curtis Sturtevant.
Sturtevant died on March 2, 2007 at the Collingswood Nursing and Rehabilitation Center in Rockville, MD after suffering from emphysema.
Estrada, Louie. 2007. William C. Sturtevant; Expert on Indians. Washington Post, March 17. http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/03/16/AR2007031602273.html, accessed August 31, 2012.
Jackson, Jason Baird. 2007. William C. Sturtevant (1926-2007). http://museumanthropology.blogspot.com/2007/03/william-c-sturtevant-1926-2007.html, accessed August 31, 2012.
Merrill, William L. 2002. William Curtis Sturtevant, Anthropologist. In Anthropology, History, and American Indians: Essays in Honor of William Curtis Sturtevant. William L. Merrill and Ives Goddard, eds. Pp. 11-36. Washington D.C.: Smithsonian Institution Press.
1926 -- Born July 26 in Morristown, NJ
1944 -- Entered the University of California at Berkeley as a second-semester freshman
1944 -- Attended summer school at the Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico in Mexico City where he took courses on Mexican archaeology and South American ethnology
1945 -- Drafted into the United States Navy
1946 -- Received an honorable discharge from the Navy with the rank of pharmacist's mate third class and returned to UC Berkeley
1947 -- Attended the University of New Mexico's summer field school in Chaco Canyon, New Mexico
1949 -- January: Received his Bachelor's degree with honors in anthropology from UC Berkeley
1949 -- Began graduate studies at Yale University
1950-1951 -- Spent the summers of 1950 and 1951 in Florida conducting fieldwork among the Mikasuki-speaking Seminole
1951 -- Conducted his first research study of the Iroquois, a classification of Seneca musical instruments, their construction and use, with Harold Conklin
1952 -- May: Moved to Big Cypress Reservation in Florida to conduct research for his dissertation. He focused on Seminole medicine, but also collected physical anthropological data such as blood-type frequencies, handedness, and color blindness
1952 -- July 26: Married Theda Maw
1954 -- Hired by Yale University as an instructor in the Department of Anthropology and as an assistant curator of anthropology in the Yale Peabody Museum
1955 -- Received PhD in anthropology from Yale University
1956 -- Joined the staff of the Smithsonian Institution's Bureau of American Ethnology (BAE) as a research anthropologist
1957 -- Began a three-year term on the Board of Governors of the Anthropological Society of Washington
1957 -- Traveled to Rock Hill, South Carolina to collect linguistic data from Sam Blue, the last member of the Catawba tribe to have maintained some proficiency in the Catawba language. While there, he made a small collection of Catawba pottery for the United States National Museum
1957-1958 -- Spent seven weeks continuing his research among the New York Seneca
1959 -- Returned to Florida to study Seminole ethnobotany. He also collected ethnographic materials, especially objects made for the tourist market, which he deposited in the United States National Museum
1959-1960 -- Member of the executive committee of the Florida Anthropological Society
1960 -- July and August: Visited 17 European museums to examine early ethnographic examples and possible European prototypes of eastern North American Indian material culture
1961-1962 -- Spent the summers of these years conducting ethnographic fieldwork among the Seneca-Cayuga in Oklahoma
1962 -- October: Visited the Six Nations Reserve in Ontario, Canada to conduct fieldwork among the Seneca and Cayuga there
1962-1968 -- Book-review editor and associate editor of the American Anthropologist
1963 -- October: Spent the year in Burma; visited neighborhoods in Rangoon and villages in the surrounding countryside, examined photographs in several archives, studied the Burmese language, and read extensively about the country's history and culture. Assembled notes on Burmese clothing and other aspects of the culture, took hundreds of photographs, and made a collection of 386 items of clothing and other objects for the Smithsonian
1964 -- Visited Inle Lake in the Southern Shan States southeast of Mandalay, where he examined local approaches to artificial island agriculture
1964-1981 -- Became a member of the American Anthropological Association's Committee on Anthropological Research in Museums, which became the Council for Museum Anthropology in 1974. Sturtevant was the Council's first vice president, serving two terms between 1974 and 1978, and was its president from 1978 to 1981
1965 -- Became curator of North American Ethnology in the Department of Anthropology at the National Museum of Natural History after the dissolution of the BAE
1965-1966 -- President of the American Society for Ethnohistory
1966 -- Named the editor of the Handbook of North American Indians
1967-1968 -- Fulbright scholar and lecturer at Oxford University's Institute of Social Anthropology
1969 -- Began serving on the American Anthropological Association's Committee on Archives
1974-1989 -- Adjunct Professor in the Department of Anthropology at Johns Hopkins University
1976-1982 -- Served three terms on the Board of Trustees of the Museum of the American Indian-Heye Foundation and was appointed to a fourth term between 1984 and 1986
1977 -- President of the American Ethnological Society
1980-1981 -- President of the American Anthropological Association
1981 -- Spent part of the spring semester at the University of California Berkeley as a Regents Lecturer
1982-1988 -- Board of Directors of Survival International
1986 -- Divorced Theda Maw
1986-1987 -- Smithsonian Fellow at Oxford University's Worcester College
1990 -- Married Sally McLendon
1992 -- President of the Anthropological Society of Washington
1996 -- Awarded an honorary doctorate in humane letters at Brown University
2007 -- Died March 2 in Rockville, MD
Other materials relating to William C. Sturtevant at the National Anthropological Archives are included in the following collections:
Photo Lot 59
Photo Lot 79-51
Photo Lot 80-3
Photo Lot 81R
Photo Lot 86-68 (6)
Photo Lot 86-68 (7)
American Society for Ethnohistory records
Committee on Anthropological Research in Museum Records
Handbook of North American Indians records
Records of the Department of Anthropology, National Museum of Natural History
Gordon Davis Gibson Papers, Sound Recordings
SPC Se Powhatan Confederacy Mattapony BAE No # 01790700
DOE Oceania:Amer Poly:Hi:Hawaiian Helmet:Sturtevant 04913800
DOE Oceania:Amer Poly:Hi:Hawaiian Helmet:Sturtevant 04913900
DOE Oceania:Amer Poly:Hi:Hawaiian Helmet:Sturtevant 04914000
Negative MNH 1530
Negative MNH 1530 B
Sturtevant is listed as a correspondent in the following NAA collections:
Administrative file, 1949-1965, Records of the Bureau of American Ethnology
John Lawrence Angel Papers
James Henri Howard Papers
Donald Jayne Lehmer Papers
John Victor Murra Papers
Records of the Society for American Archaeology
Albert Clanton Spaulding Papers
Waldo Rudolph Wedel and Mildred Mott Wedel Papers
Copies of sound recordings made by William C. Sturtevant can be found at The California Language Archive at UC Berkeley in two collections, The William Sturtevant collection of Creek/Seminole sound recordings, which includes 31 minutes of Northern Muskogean linguistic field recordings from 1951, and The William Sturtevant collection of Mikasuki sound recordings, which includes 33 minutes of Mikasuki linguistic field recordings from 1951. Two sound tape reels of Seminole music Sturtevant recorded in Florida in 1951 can be found at Wesleyan University's World Music Archives. Folk songs on these recordings include "Scalping Sickness," "Bear Sickness with blowing," "Bear sickness without blowing," "Lullaby," "Feather Dance," "Snake Dance," and "Crazy Dance." Performers include Josie Billie, Lee Cypress, Harvey Jumper, Boy Jim, Charlie (Johnny?) Cypress, Little Tiger Tail, Billy Ossiola, and Charlie Billy Boy.
One video tape, "Seminole History and Tradition", was transferred to the Human Studies Film Archives.
Series 2.2, Tukabahchee Plate: Glass negative of spectrogram from FBI (Box 135), removed for storage with other glass plate negatives.
These papers were transferred to the National Anthropological Archives by the Department of Anthropology at the National Museum of Natural History.
Files containing Sturtevant's students' grades have been restricted, as have his students' and colleagues' grant and fellowships applications. Restricted files were separated and placed at the end of their respective series in boxes 87, 264, 322, 389-394, 435-436, 448, 468, and 483. For preservation reasons, his computer files are also restricted. Seminole sound recordings are restricted. Access to the William C. Sturtevant Papers requires an apointment.
William C. Sturtevant papers, National Anthropological Archives, Smithsonian Institution
The papers of William C. Sturtevant were processed with the assistance of a Wenner-Gren Foundation Historical Archives Program grant awarded to Dr. Ives Goddard. Digitization and preparation of these materials for online access has been funded through generous support from the Arcadia Fund.
National Museum of Natural History. Division of Mammals Search this
26.99 cu. ft. (23 record storage boxes) (1 document box) (1 blueprint storage box) (4 16x20 boxes) (3 oversize folders)
Digital versatile discs
This accession consists of the records of curator emeritus Richard W. Thorington (1937-2017), who specialized in systematics, evolution, anatomy, and functional morphology
in mammals, especially of primates and squirrels. The records primarily document Thorington's curatorial activities in the Division of Mammals at the National Museum of Natural
History in regard to field work, research, publications, professional societies, lecturing, committees, collections management and when he served as Chairman of the Department
of Vertebrate Zoology (1987-1992) and as Director of the Smithsonian Primate Biology Program. Records that predate Thorington's career at the Smithsonian Institution pertain
to his activities as primatologist at Harvard University's New England Regional Primate Research Center (NERPRC), 1964-1969; as Chairman of the NERPRC Division of Primatology,
1966-1969; as Associate in Mammalogy at Harvard University's Museum of Comparative Zoology, 1964-1970; and when he was an undergraduate student at Princeton University (1956-1959),
followed by graduate studies in biology at Harvard University where he earned a doctorate degree in 1964. Also represented in these records is primatologist John Russell Napier,
Director of the Smithsonian Primate Biology Program, who was succeeded by Thorington.
Materials include correspondence, memoranda, and notes; grant proposals; reports; contracts and agreements; research publications, data, and analyses; field work and laboratory
notebooks; meeting agendas and minutes; book reviews; budget summaries; information about conferences, symposiums, committees, workshops, surveys, and conservation biology
programs; visitor books; lecture papers and presentation material; photographs, slides, and negatives; awards; newsletters, articles, newspapers, and clippings; exhibition
and loan information; brochures; maps; scientific illustrations and drawings; floor plans; posters; videotapes; audiotapes; and supporting documentation. Some materials are
in electronic format.
8.51 cu. ft. (8 record storage boxes) (1 3x5 box) (1 5x8 box)
These papers consist of correspondence with conchologists, naturalists, and shell collectors pertaining to shell collections and exchanges, and responses to Shimek's
questionnaires on Pomatiopsis lapidarias and other shells; notebooks listing personal names of those to whom Shimek sent his publications on loess, geology, and botany; a
notebook containing names of Czech-Americans; a notebook containing personal names listed under the counties of Iowa; field notes and diaries documenting Shimek's scientific
field explorations throughout the Midwest, the Atlantic coastal states, the South, the Southwest, and Nicaragua; photographs showing mostly geological features and flora;
a scrapbook on the geology of several counties of Iowa; a class book kept by Shimek while he was an instructor at the University of Nebraska; maps of different localities
in Iowa and Nebraska; bibliographical cards on geological formations, shells, loess, and botany, arranged by subject and alphabetically thereunder; newspaper clippings, journal
articles, and speeches, probably on soil erosion and prevention, and on foreign immigration.
Bohumil Shimek (1861-1937) studied civil engineering at the State University of Iowa (SUI), where he received a C.E. degree in 1883 and an M.S. degree in 1902. He served
as railroad and county surveyor for Johnson County, Iowa, 1883-1885, and taught sciences at Iowa City High School, 1885-1888. From 1888 until 1890, Shimek was an instructor
in zoology at the University of Nebraska. From 1890 to 1932, he taught botany at SUI and served as the head of the Department of Botany, 1914-1919. In 1914, Shimek was an
exchange professor at Charles University in Prague. Shimek was also Curator of the Herbarium, SUI, 1895-1937; President of the Iowa State Academy of Sciences, 1904-1905; a
geologist for the Iowa State Geological Survey, 1908-1929; and Director of the Lakeside Laboratory, Lake Okoboji, Iowa. Shimek's interest in the natural sciences and geology
covered many areas, but he was mostly known for his study of loess, loess fossils, and fossil malacology in Iowa and the prairie states. He was the author of the term, NEBRASKAN,
which is used to describe the layer underneath the Aftonian interglacial deposits.