University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology

Welcome to the Penn Museum blog. First launched in January 2009, the Museum blog now has over 800 posts covering a range of topics in the categories of Museum, Collection, Exhibitions, Research, and By Location. Here you’ll hear directly from our staff and Penn students about their work, research, experiences, and discoveries. To explore a topic of interest, please use the Blog Search function.


The Story Behind the Painted Buffalo Robes

Animal Hide Overall

By: Bill Wierzbowski

One hundred years ago this year (when the Penn Museum was just celebrating the 25th anniversary of its founding) a letter arrived on the desk of then Director, George Byron Gordon.  The post was from James H. McGlaughlin, who ran a trading post on Standing Rock Reservation, in North Dakota.  In it, McGlaughlin replied to […]

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Ainu Robe from Japan [Object of the Day #31]

Ainu Robe

By: Stephen Lang

This Ainu robe was collected by  Hiram M. Hiller (1867-1921) a physician and amateur ethnologist during a trip to Hokkaido, the northern most island of Japan. The trip itself lasted only a month but covered an area stretching from the southern coastal villages of Hokkaido, near Shiraoi (where this piece comes from), to a circuit around […]

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The Golden Age of King Midas

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