Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Lab Hours

I spent a little over 3 hours in the Museum on Friday. On Monday I spent 2 hours in the Museum and 6 hours in the library, plus another 5 putting everything together.

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Lab Hours

I spent about 1 1/2 hours in the museum and another 30 minutes doing my NAGPRA assignment

Monday, April 28, 2014

NAGPRA assignment

Between 1936 and 1947, several fragments of painted wooden sticks
were removed from prehistoric archeological sites on lands administered
by the USDA Forest Service in Coconino County, AZ. These items were
collected by private individuals without permission or knowledge of the
USDA Forest Service. In 1981, these items were donated to the Museum of
Northern Arizona, where they are currently housed, with the USDA Forest
Service retaining legal control of the items.
    The fragments of wooden sticks comprise an unknown number of whole
items, but are represented by three catalog numbers at the museum
(A12399, A12995, and A12998). All of the items consist of wooden sticks
ranging in diameter from 1-2.5 cm but are of unknown length due to
breakage. The sticks are covered with blue and green paint derived from
natural mineral sources. The sticks were removed from locations
referred to as 43 Ruin and Blue Stick Ruin by the private individuals
who collected them, but these are not official Forest Service site
    Consultation with anthropologists at the Museum of Northern Arizona
and cultural specialists from the Hopi Tribe of Arizona indicate that
these items are pahos, or prayer sticks. During consultation, the Hopi
cultural specialists and personnel from the Hopi Cultural Preservation
Office stated that these pahos have ongoing historical,
traditional, and cultural importance central to the Hopi Tribe and
culture, rather than being property owned by an individual. The Hopi
Cultural Preservation Office, representing the cultural specialists and
religious leaders, has requested repatriation of these objects.

 The K[eacute]et Gooshi (Killerwhale Dorsel Fin) also called the
``Bear Song Leader's Staff'' is an object composed of a long handle and
a carved and painted pierced blade, which according to Teikweidi Clan
of Angoon, is a representation of the Brown Bear crest, embodying the
Xoots (Bear). The blade is ornamented with eight tufts of cow's tail
and is connected to the handle with cotton cord covered with swan's
down and feathers.
    The Bear Song Leader's Staff was originally in the collection of
Axel Rasmussen, a superintendent of schools in Skagway, AK. In 1948,
the Portland Art Museum purchased his collection. Records from the
Portland Art Museum read as follows: ``Purchase, Indian Collection
Subscription Fund. To be known as the Axel Rasmussen Collection.
Vendor, Earl Stendahl.'' In 1955, the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts
purchased part of the Rasmussen Collection from the Portland Art
Museum, which included this Bear Song Leader's Staff (PAM accession
48.3.460; VMFA accession  55.31.1).
    Representatives of the Central Council of the Tlingit & Haida
Indian Tribes, specifically the Teikweidi clan, have identified that
this staff depicts a representation of the Xoots crest and is owned by
the Teikweidi clan. This crest is an object of cultural patrimony, as
it is communally owned, and has ongoing historical, traditional, and
cultural importance central to the Tlingit society and culture. This
object is also a sacred object as it is vital to the ongoing cultural
and religious practices that are unique to the Tlingit. Based on this
information and consultation with the Central Council of the Tlingit &
Haida Indian Tribes, the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts reasonably
believes the Bear Song Leader's Staff is culturally affiliated with the
From March 13 to November 14, 1939, 205 cultural items were removed
from the Rudder site (1JA180), in Jackson County, AL. The Rudder site
was excavated as part of TVA's Guntersville reservoir project by the
Alabama Museum of Natural History (AMNH) at the University of Alabama,
using labor and funds provided by the Works Progress Administration.
Excavation of the land commenced after TVA had acquired this land for
the Guntersville project. The excavation site was composed of a
truncated trapezoidal mound w ith multiple construction periods and a
smaller mound containing most of the burial units. This site was
occupied during the Henry Island phase of the Mississippian culture
(ca. A.D. 1200-1400). Details regarding this site may be found in An
Archaeological Survey of Guntersville Basin on the Tennessee River in
Northern Alabama by William S. Webb and Charles G. Wilder. The
unassociated funerary
objects excavated from the Rudder site have always been in the physical
custody of the AMNH at the University of Alabama. The 205 unassociated
funerary objects are comprised of 1 ceramic bowl, 2 ceramic water
bottles, 199 pottery sherds, 2 pieces of graphite, and 1 sandstone
    These unassociated funerary objects were recovered from six burial
features. The human remains from these burial features were either not
collected during excavation or have been misplaced in the last 74
years. These burial features, however, were derived from Henry Island
phase strata in the mounds at this site. These unassociated funerary
objects are, therefore, from Mississippian culture burials.
    Although there is no scientific certainty that Native Americans of
the Henry Island phase are directly related to modern Federally
recognized tribes, Spanish and French explorers of the 16th and 17th
centuries do indicate the presence chiefdom level tribal entities in
the southeastern United States. The Coosa paramount chiefdom noted in
historical chronicles is the most likely entity related to Henry Island
phase sites in this part of the Guntersville Reservoir. Tribal groups
or towns now part of The Muscogee (Creek) Nation claim descent from the
Coosa chiefdom. The preponderance of the evidence indicates that in
this part of the Guntersville Reservoir area, Henry Island phase sites
are most likely culturally associated with groups now part of the
Muscogee (Creek) Nation.


Monday, April 14, 2014

Museum Jobs

1. I have never had a museum job.
The National Museum of the American Indian seeks applications for an 18 month paid residency for entry-level Native American museum professionals. A successful candidate will demonstrate commitment to the museum profession through academic preparation, experience with paid or volunteer work at museums or community cultural centers, experience with exhibitions and/or collections research, and/or a track record of community-based scholarship. The Curatorial Resident will enjoy all of the staff privileges and responsibilities of the Museum Scholarship Group, based in Suitland, MD or New York City.
Applications should include: 1) curriculum vitae/ professional resume; 2) letter of support from an academic or community-based sponsor or mentor. 3) essay (1200 words or less) describing: a) the candidate’s career goals; b) what the candidate hopes to gain from the residency experience; and c) why the NMAI can play an important role in the candidate’s career development. Consideration will be given to candidates who can demonstrate how their experience will benefit their communities.
Compensation is competitive with entry-level museum appointments, accompanied by a benefits package including health insurance. Travel funds for professional development will be determined in consultation with supervision. Candidates must be eligible to work in the United States.
Applications due April 15, 2014; start date June 2014.
Mail applications to: Patricia Scott, Cultural Resources Center, 4220 Silver Hill Road, Suitland, MD 20746-2863
(Western Museums Association Job Listings)

I chose this job because it is entry-level and something I would be interested in.
I have:
     - taken a course in California prehistory and archaeology
     - taken several courses in Cultural Anthropology
     - taken a class in museum methods, and have helped to research, set up, and docent an exhibit
     - served in the US Air Force, developing skills that have put me in leadership positions both in and  outside of the military

Lab Hours

I spent about 6 total hours in the museum helping to set up the exhibit.

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Lab Hours

I spent about 30 minutes in the museum putting our items together.

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Lab Hours 6

Spent a total of 3 hours researching online and in the library