Category Archives: Archives

Archives Photo of the Week: Bhutia Girl

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This week’s photo features an image collected by William Furness, III., Alfred C. Harrison, Jr., and Hiram M. Hiller. Between 1895 and 1901, the three men traveled across Oceania and Asia, collecting substantial amounts of ethnological, archaeological, and skeletal materials. Included in their collecting were many photographic materials, including this week’s photo of the week. This […]

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Archives Photo of the Week

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This week’s photo features an image from the Penn Museum’s excavations at Tikal in Guatemala. William Coe, former curator of the American Section at the museum, captured the excavation of an upside-down face sculpture in Structure 34 of the North Acropolis at Tikal. This image is featured in Archivist Alessandro Pezzati’s book Adventures in Photography: Expeditions of the […]

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Treating Archival Treasures

Heather inpainting Rinehart's Geronimo. Photo credit: Vicky Schussler.

If you’re reading this blog, you probably know that the Penn Museum’s collection holds nearly one million archaeological and anthropological objects. What some may not know is that the Museum also houses an archive that holds 2,500 linear feet of records—documents, films, and images—about the collection, the history of archaeology and anthropology, the museum’s expeditions, […]

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Ur Digitization Project: July 2013

Electrotype copy of the helmet of Meskalamdug. The gold original is in the Iraq National Museum

Documents of the month Spotlight on archival records of the Ur excavations With special thanks to all the volunteers transcribing them Cablegrams announcing finds (PA1-11-7-1927 and PA1-12-14a-1927) Not only were thousands of ancient tablets excavated at the ancient site of Ur, but thousands of modern documents were created in the process of excavating them and […]

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Art from the Archives: Northwest Coast and Inuit Prints and Drawings

Tim Paul
Silkscreen print on whitewove paper, 1993
Collected by Ruben Reina, Museum Expedition, 1994
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Stowed away in the Archives of the Penn Museum is an extremely interesting collection.  Prints of bold patterned scenes, affectionate polar bears swimming in the sea, and downright unusual images make up the collection of art made by indigenous people of the Northwest Coast.  This summer, as an intern in the archives, I had the […]

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Ur Digitization Project: June 2013

Field photo of Pit F at Ur, field season 1928-29

Artwork of the month Spotlight on museum number 31-10-1 Oil Painting of Ur It’s not often that I can discuss an oil painting that relates to the site of Ur, but this month I’m doing just that. In the 1930-31 season, the Woolleys received a distinguished artist guest, one Joseph Lindon Smith. Mr. Smith was […]

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Special visitor in the Artifact Lab

Photo from the 1972 autopsy. Dr. Michael Zimmerman (left) cuts into the mummy's wrappings with a Stryker saw, assisted by Dr. Aidan Cockburn (center) and Dr. Al Ryman (right).

If you ask me, there is always something interesting going on in the Artifact Lab, and yesterday was no exception. If you have been following the Artifact Lab blog, you will know that we have been working on one of the mummies in our collection, who we refer to as PUM I. PUM stands for […]

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Mr. Kintner meets TedX

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Recently the Archives department had a request for footage of Morocco, which turned out to be for a film about current day and historic use of water in Rabat. Once again Watson Kintner’s beautiful Kodachrome footage (1951, etc.) has had another outing in the world, this time returned to Rabat where the filmmaker has presented […]

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Archaeology: Remembering the Human Element

Within the relative comfort of a 21st century museum, it is easy to forget the sacrifices, challenges, and dedication involved in the discovery of antiquities. All too frequently when we see glamorous vases, sarcophagi glistening with gold, and jewelry enlivened with lapis lazuli, we assume that these objects tell the entire glorious story of both […]

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Archival Pursuit

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I ended up in the archives by chance. I was hoping to land a summer museum internship, so I leapt at the chance to work anywhere in the Penn Museum. When I was assigned to the archives, I didn’t know what to expect. I pictured myself looking scholarly, wearing glasses, going through the personal files […]

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