University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Athropology


Author: Emily S. Renschler

The Samuel George Morton Cranial Collection

Historical Significance and New Research

By: Emily S. Renschler and Janet Monge

Although few visitors to the Museum would know this, the Samuel George Morton cranial collection at the University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology is one of the most famous collections of human skulls in the entire world. Its presence in Philadelphia is the result of the collecting activities of Samuel George Morton (1799–1851), […]


A Historical Osteobiography of the African Crania in the Morton Collection

By: Emily S. Renschler

The African crania in the Morton Collection were especially important to Morton’s original study since they constituted the majority of the “Native African” sample that Morton found to have the smallest cranial capacity of all the world groups he measured. Yet, despite the significant and lasting impact of Morton’s conclusions regarding Africans, almost no attention […]