University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Athropology

Author: Edwin M. Shook

The Temple of the Red Stela

An important new monument is unearthed at the Maya city of Tikal in Guatemala.

By: Edwin M. Shook

Archaeological digging is a good deal like prospecting– you never know when and where you are going to strike paydirt. Most discoveries are the result of careful planning but occasionally the excavator is blessed with good luck. Whichever factor is responsible, these unpredictable finds prevent archaeology from becoming routine cut-and-dried research, and serve to stimulate […]

Tikal Stela 29

The oldest dated Lowland Maya monument is unearthed in the jungles of Guatemala. For a discussion of Maya dates the reader is referred to the accompanying article by Linton Satterthwaite.

By: Edwin M. Shook

Just short of a century ago, in 1864, canal diggers working in the steaming heat of a coastal swamp a few miles northeast of the present Puerto Barrios, Guatemala’s Caribbean seaport, had no premonition that the next shovel load of muck, thrown out on the low embankment, would bring to light one of the most […]

The Painted Tomb At Tikal

An important discovery by the Museum's expedition in Guatemala.

By: Edwin M. Shook and Alfred Kidder, II

One day, perhaps late in March of the year A.D. 457, masons set the final stone in the wall they had built to seal off the tomb of their late ruler. It was a strong wall of limestone blocks, set firmly in lime mortar. The masons, probably no more than two in the narrow space […]


photo of Temple 78
Problems of a Field Director

By: Edwin M. Shook

In 1955 the Guatemala Government reopened the airfield at Tikal, making possible the initiation of large-scale excavation and reconstruction there. Work was begun in January 1956 when a transport plane of the Guatemala Air Force landed members of the staff and a group of workmen at Tikal. That first season, though some archaeological work was […]