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 the Museum's other digital content, visit The Digital Penn Museum.


Blue lines: multispectral imaging for pigment identification

By: Nina Owczarek

Visible-induced infrared (IR) luminescence is the invisible light that some materials produce when they are excited with visible light. We can capture that invisible light with a modified camera and use it to identify those materials and find out where they are. For those of you who follow the Artifact Lab Blog, this technique will […]

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A Summer Day in the Village of Yassıhöyük

By: Ayşe Gürsan-Salzmann

Farmers and shepherds begin work at daybreak. Fields surround the village in a 2-5 km distance. At daybreak, with the call to prayer local farmers are on tractors and modern harvesters; lorries start rolling across the landscape loaded with migrant workers that include women and children. In the fields wheat and barley are checked for […]

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Sitio Conte in Real Time: January 26, 1940

By: Eric Schnittke

Tire trouble near Penonome. En route Panama to Cocle 1/26/40 Taken by S.K. Lothrop The Masons running a rapid in the Rio Grande de Cocle. 1/26/40 Taken by S.K. Lothrop

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Sitio Conte in Real Time: January 23, 1940

By: Lee Roueche

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Sitio Conte in Real Time: January 22, 1940

By: Lee Roueche

5 lbs onions $.30 10 tins Maxwell’s coffee 1# $6.00 6 paq. Salada tea $1.50 1 bag Flour Gold Medal 98# $3.25 25 lbs Chinese rice $1.50 Receipt from Compañia Kito Chen, S.A., January 22, 1940 On this day 75 years ago, J. Alden Mason went grocery shopping. So what do you feed a small […]

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Sitio Conte in Real Time: January 20, 1940

By: Lee Roueche

We are going up to the camp early this afternoon to get things started, find out the lay of the land, and get a better idea of what to buy. J. Alden Mason to John Corning, January 20, 1940 Finally in Panama after their “swanky” voyage on the Grace Line, Mason wrote to John Corning […]

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Fall 2014 Roundup of Student Events

By: Stephanie Mach

[By Charlotte Matthai, member of the Clio Society–Penn Museum’s undergraduate student interest group] During the fall 2014 semester, Clio Society went behind-the-scenes of the Penn Museum, meeting some of the people who make all of it possible and exploring the mysteries and hidden gems of storage. We met Jenn Reifsteck from Public Programs, who trained us on […]

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Sitio Conte in Real Time: January 17, 1940

By: Lee Roueche

Approaching Panama Canal after a lovely calm clear warm swanky trip. Pass thru canal tomorrow. Regards to all. J. Alden Mason, January 17, 1940

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Hands-on Learning: Artifacts, Microscopes, X-Rays, and Chicken

By: James Moss

This past fall, Professor Kate Moore’s freshman seminar Food & Fire: Archaeology and the Laboratory was the first course taught for the Penn Museum’s new Center for the Analysis of Archaeological Materials (CAAM). During the course of the semester, students had the opportunity to examine some of the Museum’s extensive archaeological collections, which have been […]

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Sitio Conte in Real Time: January 12, 1940: “Plastico”

By: Eric Schnittke

A part of every expedition, the crew for Sitio Conte began to collect supplies. Camps need to be stocked with all sorts of goods, from food and clothing to medical supplies and scientific materials. In collecting supplies, John Corning contacted the Technical Supply Company in Palo Alto, California in regards to Plastico Moulage materials.Plastico Moulage […]

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