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Our Research

Three people excavating.

Research Access to the Collections

The Penn Museum welcomes and encourages researchers to make use of its collections, including objects from all over the world, as well as extensive photographic, film, and document archives.

Find Out How

Over 100 Years of Discovery

Since 1887, the Penn Museum has been one of the leading archaeology and anthropology museums in the world, and has sponsored research in every corner of the globe. The Museum was established in 1887 with a groundbreaking act of archaeological field research—the first American expedition to ancient Babylonia to excavate the site of Nippur (then within the Ottoman Empire, now in modern-day Iraq). Since then, the Museum has undertaken over 300 research projects throughout the world.

One of a pair of massive gates at Gordion, Turkey.

The Gordion Archaeological Project

Gordion is one of the most important archaeological sites in the Near East, royal capital of King Midas and the place where Alexander the Great was said to have cut the famous Gordian Knot.

About the Project

View Our Projects From Around the World

Drone image of Lagash.

The Lagash Archaeological Project (LAP)

The (LAP) focuses on the early Bronze Age site of modern Tell al-Hiba in southern Iraq. The site is one of the largest in southern Mesopotamia. Research at the site focuses on understanding the structure and the organization of one of the world’s first cities.

About the Project