University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology

The Ur Digitization Project: The Largest Jar!

Field Photo from Pit F showing an excavated kiln still containing pottery

By: Tessa de Alarcon

While working on the Ur Digitization Project and the condition assessment of the ceramic vessels from Ur, I often find myself thinking about how they were made.  Once in a while I notice features that help illuminate that question.  My favorite example of this is 31-16-160, which is described in our database as, “pottery, the […]

Rediscovering a Forgotten Egyptian Pharaoh: A Penn Student’s Experience in the Field

Excavation site

By: Tom Stanley

In January, researchers from the Penn Museum made an historic discovery in Abydos, Egypt—unearthing the tomb and skeletal remains of a previously unknown pharaoh, Woseribre Senebkay, who reigned in the 17th century BCE. The finding was the culmination of work at the site that began in summer 2013 by a team led by Dr. Josef […]

Archives Photo of the Week: The Great Pi-ramid?

General view of the pyramids.

By: Tom Stanley

A quick note: On most Fridays,  Archivist Eric Schnittke posts cool and interesting photos from the Penn Museum Archives here on our blog. I’m happy to say that Eric is at home with his wife Maureen and their brand new baby, Cormac Xavier, who was born just this past Monday. We at the Museum congratulate […]

Hot Pots, Museum Raids, and the Race to Uncover Asia’s Archaeological Past

Federal agents descend upon the Bowers Museum in Santa Ana during a raid in January 2008

By: Joyce White

It’s not every day that an archaeologist helps serve a Federal search warrant, never mind one that was part of a 500-officer dawn raid at multiple museums in California and Chicago. The search was for smuggled Thai archaeological artifacts, brought into the US since 2003 and added to museum collections under suspicious circumstances. To get […]

What are Museum Keepers?

Requests to identify sherds in the museum collection.

By: Katy Blanchard

People often ask me, What does a Keeper do? Which is a fair question—you might think of Zoo Keepers with that terminology. You could equate our work, at the most basic level, as “collections management,” but I think we’d all say we do so much more than that. There are Keepers in all of our […]

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