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Donald J. Ortner Papers

Creator:
Ortner, Donald J.  Search this
Names:
Paleopathology Association  Search this
Smithsonian Institution Department of Anthroplogy  Search this
University of Bradford  Search this
Frohlich, Bruno, 1945-  Search this
Putschar, Walter G. J., 1904-1987  Search this
Extent:
44.37 Linear feet (96 boxes, 3 map-folders)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Maps
Photographs
Slides (photographs)
Negatives (photographic)
Manuscripts
Sound recordings
Correspondence
Place:
Virginia
England
Jordan
Peru
Date:
1963-2013
Summary:
The Donald J. Ortner Papers, dated 1963 to 2013, document his research and professional activities while working in the Division of Physical Anthropology in the Department of Anthropology at the Smithsonian Institution National Museum of Natural History. They primarily deal with his contributions to the field of paleopathology and his work with specimens from Bab edh-Dhra, Jordan and Chichester, England. The bulk of this collection consists of correspondence, files related to Ortner's publications, specimen observations and analysis, and photographs.
Scope and Contents:
The Donald J. Ortner Papers primarily document his projects, research, and correspondence working as a biological anthropologist in the Division of Physical Anthropology of the Department of Anthropology from 1963 until his death in 2012. The bulk of the projects represented relate to his work in paleopathology, such as the Near Eastern skeletal biology program in Jordan and the medieval skeletal disease project in England. The collection consists of notes, research materials, correspondence, data and data analysis, transcripts of specimen observations, maps, blueprints, artwork, negatives, slides, photographs, CD-Roms, floppy discs, and sound cassettes.
Arrangement:
This collection is arranged in 8 series: Series 1. Correspondence, 1966-2012; Series 2. Subject files, 1965-2013, undated; Series 3. Near Eastern Skeletal Biology Program, 1977-2010, undated; Series 4. Medieval Skeletal Disease Project, 1988-2006, undated; Series 5. Other publications, projects, and research, 1963-2011, undated; Series 6. Professional activities, 1971-2007, undated; Series 7. Biographical and office files, 1963-2011, undated; Series 8. Artwork, 1978, undated
Biographical Note:
Donald J. Ortner was a biological anthropologist in the Department of Anthropology at the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History (NMNH). By the time of his death, Ortner had served in many positions at the Museum, including Acting Director (1994-1996). His areas of expertise included human paleopathology, human health in medieval England, bioarcheology of the ancient Near East, and the history and evoluton of human infectious diseases. Ortner was a founding member of the Paleopathology Association.

Ortner was born in 1938 in Stoneham, Massachusetts and arrived at the NMNH in 1963, working primarily with J. Lawrence Angel who had recently started as Curator in the Division of Physical Anthropology. While working at the Museum, Ortner completed his Master's in Anthropology in 1967 and received his Ph.D. from the University of Kansas in 1970. His doctoral dissertation was on The Effects of Aging and Disease on the Micromorphology of Human Compact Bone.

Ortner worked with Walter G. J. Putschar, a pathologist based at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, on a series of short-courses (1971-1974) on paleopathology at the Smithsonian. During the summer of 1974, Putschar and Ortner traveled to Europe (London, Edinburgh, Zurich, Strasbourg, Vienna, Prague) studying and photographing examples of skeletal pathology in museums and other repositories. The result of this research was the book Identification of Pathological Conditions in Human Skeletal Remains published in 1981, with later editions in 1985 and 2003.

In 1977, Ortner joined the Expedition to the Dead Sea Plain directed by archaeologists Walter E. Rast and R. Thomas Schaub, focusing on the site of Bab edh-Dhra. Ortner studied the tombs and skeletons for data indicating cultural and biological changes, especially urbanization and connection to the development of other "Western civilizations." Ortner participated in two more field seasons in Bab edh-Dhra in 1979 and 1981. From his research at Bab-edh-Dhra, Ortner published many scholarly articles and recreated two tombs for the Hall of Western Civilization at NMNH.

In 1988, Ortner began his collaboration with the University of Bradford in Bradford, England, teaching short-courses on paleopathology. While a Visiting Professor at the University, he also participated in a project on human health and disease in Medieval England. The project focused on leprosy and syphilis in skeletons from St. James Hospital's leprosarium cemetery in Chichester, Wharram Perry, and Magistrates' Court in Kingston-upon-Hull. He received an Honorary Doctorate of Science from the University in 1995.

Donald J. Ortner died on April 29th, 2012 in Maryland.

Sources consulted:

Ubelaker, D. H. "Obituary: Donald J. Ortner (1938–2012)." American Journal of Physical Anthropology, 149 (2012): 155–156.

Arnoldi, Mary Jo and Ann Kaupp. "Donald J. Ortner, Sr. (1939-2012)." Anthropolog: Newsletter of the Department of Anthropology, Spring 2012: 1-3.

Chronology

1938 -- Born on August 23 in Stoneham, Massachusetts.

1960 -- Received B.A. in Zoology from Columbia Union College in Takoma Park, Maryland.

1963 -- Began working at the Smithsonian Institution.

1967 -- Received M.A. in Anthropology from Syracuse University.

1969 -- Promoted to Assistant Curator.

1970 -- Received Ph.D. from the University of Kansas.

1971 -- Promoted to Associate Curator.

1971-1975 -- Taught part-time at the University of Maryland.

1974 -- Spent summer with Dr. Walter G. J. Putschar studying pathological specimens in Europe.

1976 -- Promoted to Curator in the Anthropology Department, National Museum of Natural History.

1977 -- First field season at Bab edh-Dhra cemetery site in Jordan.

1979 -- Second field season at Bab edh-Dhra cemetery site in Jordan.

1981 -- Third field season at Bab edh-Dhra cemetery site in Jordan.

1988 -- Began association with the University of Bradford in Bradford, England.

1988-1992 -- Chairman of the Department of Anthropology, National Museum of Natural History.

1994-1996 -- Acting Director of the National Museum of Natural History.

1995 -- Awarded an Honorary Doctorate of Science degree from the University of Bradford.

1999-2001 -- President of the Paleopathology Association.

2005 -- Received Eve Cockburn Award from the Paleopathology Association in recognition of his contributions in the field of paleopathology.

2012 -- Died on April 29 in Maryland.
Related Materials:
The following photo lots depicting Donald J. Ortner can be found at the NAA:

Photo Lot 7D: Photograph of attendees after American Anthropological Association annual meeting, 1965

Photo Lot 7A: Portraits made at the annual meeting of the American Association of Physical Anthropologists, 1970

Photo Lot 77-45: Photograph of Smithsonian Institution physical anthropologists, circa 1977

Photo Lot 4822: Division of Physical Anthropology collection of photographs of physical anthropologists, undated

Sound recordings of Donald J. Ortner at the NAA:

John Lawrence Angel Papers, Sound Recordings, "How Humans Adapt: A Biocultural Odyssey," November 9, 1981

Other collections at the NAA in which Donald J. Ortner is a correspondent or creator of material:

Records of the Department of Anthropology, 1877-1980

Department of Anthropology Annual Reports, 1920-1983

John Lawrence Angel Papers, 1930s-1980s

Three films that document Ortner's work in Bab edh-Dhra are located in the Human Studies Film Archives (HSFA):

Film number 2000.9.1, The Bones of Bab edh-Dhra, ca. 1970s

Film number 2000.9.3, Bab edh-Dhra Film Project, 1970-1980

Film number 2014.3, City of the Dead, 1978

The Smithsonian Institution Archives holds the original City of the Dead in Accession 05-282, Office of Telecommunications, Productions.
Provenance:
These papers were transferred to the NAA from the Department of Anthropology in 2014.
Restrictions:
The Donald J. Ortner Papers are open for research.

Access to the Donald J. Ortner Papers requires an appointment.

Requests to view forensic files are subject to review by the NAA. Forensic files can only be viewed in the National Anthropological Archives reading room. No copies are permitted unless permission is granted by the agency the report was written for.

Electronic records are unavailable for research. Please contact the reference archivist for additional information.

Use of audiovisual recordings with no duplicate access copy requires advance notice.
Rights:
Contact the repository for terms of use.
Topic:
Anthropologists -- United States  Search this
Archaeology  Search this
Human remains (Archaeology)  Search this
Excavations (Archaeology) -- Middle East  Search this
Scurvy  Search this
Leprosy -- Research  Search this
Physical anthropology  Search this
Bāb edh-Dhrā Site (Jordan)  Search this
Excavations (Archaeology) -- England  Search this
Forensic anthropology  Search this
Paleopathology  Search this
Bronze age  Search this
Chichester (England)  Search this
Diseases  Search this
Genre/Form:
Maps
Photographs
Slides (photographs)
Negatives (photographic)
Manuscripts
Sound recordings
Correspondence
Citation:
Donald J. Ortner Papers, National Anthropological Archives, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
NAA.2014-07
See more items in:
Donald J. Ortner Papers
Archival Repository:
National Anthropological Archives
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-naa-2014-07

George Grant MacCurdy photograph collection of skeletal material from the Peruvian Highlands

Collector:
MacCurdy, George Grant, 1863-1947  Search this
Extent:
100 Prints (circa, silver gelatin)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Prints
Photographs
Date:
undated
Scope and Contents note:
Photographs depicting Peruvian human skeletal remains, mostly skulls, possibly from the Bingham Expedition.
Biographical/Historical note:
George Grant MacCurdy (1863-1947) was an archeologist and physical anthropologist. He studied at Harvard University and Yale University, and in Vienna, Paris, and Berlin. For over thirty years, MacCurdy was a professor and curator of anthropological collections at the Yale Peabody Museum of Natural History. In 1921, MacCurdy cofounded the American School in France for Prehistoric Studies, which trained students how to conduct archeological investigations at prehistoric sites.
Local Call Number(s):
NAA Photo Lot 77-31
Location of Other Archival Materials:
Additional photographs of skeletal material from Peru can be found in the National Anthropological Archives in Photo Lot 73-26C, and Photo Lot 83-41.
Restrictions:
The collection is open for research.

Access to the collection requires an appointment.
Rights:
Contact the repository for terms of use.
Topic:
Human remains (Archaeology) -- Peru  Search this
Genre/Form:
Photographs
Citation:
Photo lot 77-31, George Grant MacCurdy photograph collection of skeletal material from the Peruvian Highlands, National Anthropological Archives, Smithsonian Institution
Identifier:
NAA.PhotoLot.77-31
Archival Repository:
National Anthropological Archives
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-naa-photolot-77-31

Forensic archaeology a global perspective edited by W.J. Mike Groen, Nicholas Márquez-Grant and Robert C. Janaway

Editor:
Groen, W. J. Mike  Search this
Márquez-Grant, Nicholas 1976-  Search this
Janaway, R. C  Search this
Physical description:
1 online resource
Type:
Electronic resources
Electronic books
Date:
2015
Topic:
Forensic archaeology  Search this
Forensic anthropology  Search this
Human remains (Archaeology)  Search this
Criminal investigation  Search this
Humans  Search this
Archaeology--methods  Search this
Forensic Anthropology--methods  Search this
Body Remains  Search this
Bone and Bones--injuries  Search this
Homicide  Search this
Violence  Search this
War Crimes  Search this
MEDICAL--Forensic Medicine  Search this
MEDICAL--Preventive Medicine  Search this
MEDICAL--Public Health  Search this
Call number:
GN69.8 .F67 2015 (Internet)
Data Source:
Smithsonian Libraries
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:siris_sil_1146096

The bioarchaeology of violence / edited by Debra L. Martin, Ryan P. Harrod, and Ventura R. Pérez ; foreword by Clark Spencer Larsen

Author:
Martin, Debra L (Professor of Biological Anthropology)  Search this
Harrod, Ryan P  Search this
Pérez, Ventura R  Search this
Physical description:
xiii, 291 p. : ill., maps ; 24 cm
Type:
Books
Date:
2012
C2012
Topic:
Human remains (Archaeology)  Search this
Violence--History  Search this
Wounds and injuries--History  Search this
Social archaeology  Search this
Rites and ceremonies  Search this
War and society--History  Search this
Call number:
CC79.5.H85 B555 2012
Data Source:
Smithsonian Libraries
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:siris_sil_991656

Bioarchaeological and forensic perspectives on violence : how violent death is interpreted from skeletal remains / edited by Debra L. Martin, University of Nevada, Las Vegas ; Cheryl P. Anderson, University of Nevada, Las Vegas

Author:
American Association of Physical Anthropologists Annual meeting (81st : 2012 : Portland, Or.)  Search this
Editor:
Martin, Debra L (Professor of Biological Anthropology)  Search this
Anderson, Cheryl P.  Search this
Physical description:
xii, 329 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm
Type:
Congresses
Conference papers and proceedings
History
Date:
2014
Topic:
Human remains (Archaeology)  Search this
Violence--History  Search this
Wounds and injuries--History  Search this
Social archaeology  Search this
Forensic anthropology  Search this
Data Source:
Smithsonian Libraries
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:siris_sil_1026083

Colonized bodies, worlds transformed : toward a global bioarchaeology of contact and colonialism / edited by Melissa S. Murphy and Haagen D. Klaus ; foreword by Clark Spencer Larsen

Editor:
Murphy, Melissa Scott  Search this
Klaus, Haagen D.  Search this
Author of introduction:
Larsen, Clark Spencer  Search this
Physical description:
xvii, 459 pages : illustrations, maps ; 25 cm
Type:
Books
Place:
United States
Date:
2017
Topic:
Human remains (Archaeology)  Search this
Archaeology and history  Search this
Ethnoarchaeology  Search this
Social archaeology  Search this
Data Source:
Smithsonian Libraries
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:siris_sil_1078373

The 1912 Yale Peruvian scientific expedition collections from Machu Picchu : human and animal remains / Richard L. Burger, Lucy C. Salazar, editors

Author:
Burger, Richard L  Search this
Salazar, Lucy C  Search this
Yale University Department of Anthropology  Search this
Peabody Museum of Natural History  Search this
Physical description:
xv, 181 p. : ill., maps ; 25 cm
Type:
Books
Place:
Peru
Machu Picchu Site
Machu Picchu Site (Peru)
Date:
2003
C2003
Topic:
Human remains (Archaeology)  Search this
Animal remains (Archaeology)  Search this
Excavations (Archaeology)  Search this
Call number:
F3429.1.M3 A13 2003
Data Source:
Smithsonian Libraries
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:siris_sil_716268

Us and them : archaeology and ethnicity in the Andes / edited by Richard Martin Reycraft

Author:
Reycraft, Richard Martin  Search this
Society for American Archaeology Meeting (64th : 1999 : Chicago, Ill.)  Search this
Physical description:
242 p. : ill. ; 28 cm
Type:
Congresses
Place:
Andes Region
Date:
2005
Topic:
Ethnic identity  Search this
Antiquities  Search this
Anthropometry  Search this
Ethnoarchaeology  Search this
Human remains (Archaeology)  Search this
Grave goods  Search this
Data Source:
Smithsonian Libraries
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:siris_sil_774392

Interacting with the dead : perspectives on mortuary archaeology for the new millennium / edited by Gordon F.M. Rakita ... [et al.]

Author:
Rakita, Gordon F. M. 1971-  Search this
Physical description:
xii, 390 p. : ill., maps ; 25 cm
Type:
Books
Date:
2005
C2005
Topic:
Human remains (Archaeology)  Search this
Undertakers and undertaking  Search this
Undertakers and undertaking--Social aspects  Search this
Funeral rites and ceremonies  Search this
Death--Social aspects  Search this
Data Source:
Smithsonian Libraries
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:siris_sil_790098

Building a new biocultural synthesis : political-economic perspectives on human biology / edited by Alan H. Goodman and Thomas L. Leatherman

Author:
Goodman, Alan H  Search this
Leatherman, Thomas L  Search this
Physical description:
xxi, 486 p. : ill., map ; 23 cm
Type:
Books
Date:
1998
C1998
Topic:
Physical anthropology  Search this
Social history  Search this
Human remains (Archaeology)  Search this
Medical anthropology  Search this
Data Source:
Smithsonian Libraries
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:siris_sil_556777

The dead tell tales : essays in honor of Jane E. Buikstra / edited by María Cecilia Lozada and Barra O'Donnabhain

Editor of compliation:
Lozada, María Cecilia  Search this
Editor of compilation:
O'Donnabhain, Barra  Search this
Honouree:
Buikstra, Jane E.  Search this
Physical description:
xiv, 191 pages : illustrations, maps ; 29 cm
Type:
Case studies
Date:
2013
Topic:
Human remains (Archaeology)  Search this
Paleopathology  Search this
Funeral rites and ceremonies  Search this
Data Source:
Smithsonian Libraries
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:siris_sil_1011160

The Routledge handbook of the bioarchaeology of human conflict / edited by Christopher Knüsel and Martin J. Smith

Title:
Handbook of the bioarchaeology of human conflict
Editor of compilation:
Knüsel, Christopher  Search this
Smith, Martin 1971-  Search this
Physical description:
xlvi, 704 pages : illustrations, maps ; 26 cm
Type:
Books
History
Date:
2014
Topic:
Human remains (Archaeology)  Search this
War wounds--History  Search this
Wounds and injuries--History  Search this
War and society--History  Search this
Violence--History  Search this
Funeral rites and ceremonies--History  Search this
Data Source:
Smithsonian Libraries
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:siris_sil_1019457

Sacrifice, violence, and ideology among the Moche : the rise of social complexity in ancient Peru / Steve Bourget

Author:
Bourget, Steve 1956-  Search this
Physical description:
xiii, 431 pages, 16 unnumbered pages of plates : illustrations (some color), map ; 29 cm
Type:
Books
Place:
Peru
Moche (Peru)
Date:
2016
Topic:
Antiquities  Search this
Mochica Indians--Religion  Search this
Social life and customs  Search this
Rites and ceremonies  Search this
Human sacrifice  Search this
Human remains (Archaeology)  Search this
Social archaeology  Search this
Violence--History  Search this
Data Source:
Smithsonian Libraries
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:siris_sil_1062663

The bioarchaeology of societal collapse and regeneration in ancient Peru / Danielle Shawn Kurin

Author:
Kurin, Danielle Shawn  Search this
Physical description:
xv, 218 pages : illustrations (some color), color maps ; 25 cm
Type:
Books
History
Place:
Peru
Andahuaylas (Province)
Andahuaylas (Peru : Province)
Date:
2016
Topic:
Indians of South America--Antiquities  Search this
Human remains (Archaeology)  Search this
Social archaeology  Search this
Huari Indians--History  Search this
History  Search this
Antiquities  Search this
Civilization  Search this
Data Source:
Smithsonian Libraries
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:siris_sil_1066782

Biomolecular archaeology : genetic approaches to the past / edited by David M. Reed

Author:
Visiting Scholar Conference (19th : 2002 : Southern Illinois University at Carbondale)  Search this
Reed, David M  Search this
Southern Illinois University Carbondale Center for Archaeological Investigations  Search this
Physical description:
viii, 246 p. : ill., maps ; 26 cm
Type:
Congresses
Date:
2005
C2005
Topic:
Archaeological chemistry  Search this
Human molecular genetics  Search this
Mitochondrial DNA  Search this
Human remains (Archaeology)  Search this
Archaeology--Methodology  Search this
Data Source:
Smithsonian Libraries
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:siris_sil_908125

Investigaciones en la Huaca de la Luna, 1998-1999 / S. Uceda, E. Mujica, R. Morales, editores

Author:
Uceda, Santiago  Search this
Mujica B., Elias  Search this
Morales, Ricardo  Search this
Proyecto Arqueológico Huacas del Sol y de la Luna  Search this
Physical description:
497 p. : ill., maps ; 30 cm
Type:
Books
Place:
Peru
Trujillo (Province)
Huaca de la Luna Site (Peru)
Trujillo (Peru : Province)
Date:
2004
Topic:
Antiquities--Collection and preservation  Search this
Mochica architecture  Search this
Mochica Indians--Anthropometry  Search this
Excavations (Archaeology)  Search this
Human remains (Archaeology)  Search this
Plant remains (Archaeology)  Search this
Antiquities  Search this
Collection and preservation  Search this
Data Source:
Smithsonian Libraries
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:siris_sil_933049

Investigaciones en la Huaca de la Luna 2000 / S. Uceda, E. Mujica, R. Morales, editores

Title:
Proyecto Arqueológico Huacas del Sol y de la Luna
Author:
Uceda, Santiago  Search this
Mujica B., Elias  Search this
Morales, Ricardo  Search this
Proyecto Arqueológico Huacas del Sol y de la Luna  Search this
Universidad Nacional de Trujillo Facultad de Ciencias Sociales  Search this
Physical description:
355 p. : ill ; 30 cm
Type:
Books
Place:
Peru
Trujillo (Province)
Huaca de la Luna Site (Peru)
Trujillo (Peru : Province)
Date:
2006
Topic:
Antiquities  Search this
Mochica architecture  Search this
Mochica Indians--Anthropometry  Search this
Excavations (Archaeology)  Search this
Human remains (Archaeology)  Search this
Plant remains (Archaeology)  Search this
Data Source:
Smithsonian Libraries
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:siris_sil_933050

Investigaciones en la Huaca de la Luna 2001 / S. Uceda, E. Mujica, R. Morales, editores

Title:
Proyecto Arqueológico Huacas del Sol y de la Luna
Author:
Uceda, Santiago  Search this
Mujica B., Elias  Search this
Morales, Ricardo  Search this
Proyecto Arqueológico Huacas del Sol y de la Luna  Search this
Universidad Nacional de Trujillo Facultad de Ciencias Sociales  Search this
Patronato Huacas del Valle de Moche  Search this
Physical description:
368 p. : ill., 1 map, plans ; 30 cm
Type:
Books
Place:
Peru
Trujillo (Province)
Huaca de la Luna Site (Peru)
Trujillo (Peru : Province)
Date:
2008
Topic:
Antiquities  Search this
Mochica architecture  Search this
Excavations (Archaeology)  Search this
Human remains (Archaeology)  Search this
Collection and preservation  Search this
Data Source:
Smithsonian Libraries
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:siris_sil_933051

The bioarchaeology of the human head : decapitation, decoration, and deformation / edited by Michelle Bonogofsky ; foreword by Clark Spencer Larsen

Author:
Bonogofsky, Michelle  Search this
Physical description:
xix, 323 p. : ill., maps ; 25 cm
Type:
Books
Date:
2011
C2011
Topic:
Head--Abnormalities  Search this
Head--Social aspects  Search this
Skull--Artificial deformities  Search this
Cranial manipulation  Search this
Beheading  Search this
Human remains (Archaeology)  Search this
Data Source:
Smithsonian Libraries
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:siris_sil_967332

From bare bones to mummified : understanding health and disease in an Inca community / by Melissa Scott Murphy

Title:
Understanding health and disease in an Inca community
Author:
Murphy, Melissa Scott  Search this
Physical description:
xiv, 235 p. : ill. ; cm
Type:
Manuscripts
Place:
Peru
Date:
2004
To 1548
Topic:
Incas--Diseases  Search this
Incas--Health and hygiene  Search this
Incas--Social conditions  Search this
Incas--Funeral customs and rites  Search this
Human remains (Archaeology)--Analysis  Search this
Paleopathology  Search this
History  Search this
Data Source:
Smithsonian Libraries
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:siris_sil_970997

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