University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Athropology

Volume 54 / Issue 2


Issue Cover

On the Cover: The Undersea Grizzly Bear Helmet was collected by Penn Museum Curator Louis Shotridge in 1917. The helmet, dated ca. 1770–1790, is Tlingit and comes from Klukwan, Alaska. It is made of wood, pigment, spruce root, human hair, abalone shell, and copper. Shotridge wears a similar helmet on page 12 of this issue.
Collection Object Number: NA5739
Penn Museum Image #151906

An Interview with Julian Siggers

Communicating the Thrill of Discovery

By: Anonymous

Expedition sat down with Julian Siggers during his second week as Williams Director of the Penn Museum. Below are excerpts from that conversation. Since joining the Penn Museum, what has impressed you as particularly noteworthy about our collection? I have known of the Penn Museum’s collection for over 25 years, since my first year as […]

Greg Possehl

A Portrait

By: Peter Bogucki and Uzma Z. Rizvi and Peter Bogucki

I always knew when Dr. P was in his office at the Penn Museum. His car with the license plate Meluhha (the Sumerian name for the Harappan Civilization) alerted all of us to his presence. I recently went to visit the Museum and realized how much I missed that simple welcoming sight. Dr. Gregory L. Possehl, […]

A New Look at What in the World?

By: Lawrence Rosen

Sometime in the early 1950s I stumbled upon a strange television show that featured objects emerging from a cloud of smoke accompanied by very unusual music. The show followed a simple format: three experts attempted to identify objects that were certainly not from my world. It seemed to be a quiz show, but absent a […]

Midden Finds

By: Peter D. Harrison

The most surprising finds in the kitchen garbage dump were fragmented, burned, and gnawed human bones, recovered among burned animal bones. The human remains included both skulls—broken and burned on the interior—and fragments of long bones. The human bones from the midden are still under study and have not yet been published, so the cause […]

Louis Shotridge and the Penn Museum

By: Lucy Fowler-Williams

Penn Museum’s first and only indigenous curator was Stuwukáa, also known as Louis Shotridge, a talented and ambitious Tlingit native of Southeast Alaska. Employed for two decades to make collections and conduct ethnographic fieldwork among his Tlingit clansmen in Alaska, Shotridge organized four collecting expeditions between 1913 and 1932 and shipped hundreds of objects back […]