Anthropology: Smithsonian Institution Resources
The following sites are hosted by various Smithsonian Institution museums and departments. These sites have specific content in the field of anthropology.
- African Voices
Offers a dynamic, virtual tour of the African Voices exhibition in the National Museum of Natural History. The site enables the visitor to explore the history of Africa, themes in the exhibition, and the work of a master carver, as well as to obtain a bibliography of published works on Africa and to link to related websites.
- Anthropology Conservation Laboratory
The Laboratory's website offers information about access to the anthropological collections of the Smithsonian, a statement of sampling policy, and links to other sites concerned with conservation and preservation. It also gives online access to back issues of the ICOM Ethnographic Conservation Newsletter.
- Anthropology Department, National Museum of Natural History
At this site one can find information about the Department's research and collections, links to online exhibitions and research programs, news about the Department members' current field work and recently published books, a list of publications (1990 - 2000) of the Department, public information, and a history of the Department.
- Anthropology on the Internet for K-12
Expressly designed for teachers and students interested in anthropology, whether in kindergarten or twelfth grade, this site provides a broadly useful compilation of Internet sources for archaeology, social/cultural anthropology, physical anthropology, linguistics, and area studies, as well as links to museums, virtual exhibits, electronic publications, and professional associations.
- Anthropology Outreach Office
Emphasizing public and educational information, the website of the Anthropology Department's Outreach Office offers numerous online, printable teachers' packets, bibliographies, and guides to various anthropological topics. Noteworthy is AnthroNotes, the biannual publication for teachers. The mission of the Outreach Office is to provide teachers resources for integrating anthropology into the K - 12 curriculum.
- Archaeobiology Program
Representing a program focusing on the earliest domestication of plants and animals and the development of agricultural economies, this website contains information about the program's collections, staff, and research, as well as links to numerous topically related online information sources.
- Archaeology, Ethnology and Physical Anthropology Collections
This site enables users to apply to visit stored Smithsonian anthropological collections, to request catalog information, to order photographs, and to contact research staff.
- Arctic Studies Center
Presents information on the Center's research projects and publications. A virtual exhibit takes you through the halls of cyberspace with images, text, audio and video clips from native cultures of the Arctic, including those of the Vikings, Ainu, and peoples of northeastern Siberia and Alaska.
- Benedicte Wrensted: An Idaho Photographer in Focus
Featuring Wrensted's remarkable black-and-white portraits - made between 1895 and 1912 - of Native Americans living in southeastern Idaho, this online Smithsonian exhibition includes fascinating biographical material on the photographer herself, as well as information about identification, interpretation, and historical background of the photographs.
- Bureau of American Ethnology (BAE) Digital Publications
Smithsonian Institution Libraries: Digital Collections
This site currently features three digital publications. One is BAE Bulletin 200 (1971). It indexes by author, title, and selected subjects the published works of the Bureau of American Ethnology. The other two are papers by John C. Ewers: "Hair Pipes in Plains Indian Adornment," which originally appeared in BAE Bulletin 164 (1957); and "The Horse in Blackfoot Indian Culture," first published in BAE Bulletin 159 (1955).
Bibliothèque Nationale de France: Gallica
Gallica provides numerous BAE annual reports in full text. Click on Recherche on the Gallica homepage, type "Bureau of American Ethnology" as the title words (Motes du titre). Click on Rechercher, and next on "Annual report ---" in the Résultat de la recherche; then select the date of the BAE annual report you wish to display.
- The Canela Indians of Northeastern Central Brazil
Visit the Canela Indians with a field ethnologist, and read about the challenges of conducting ethnographic research in a beautiful savannah setting. Let photos, videos, and descriptive writing enhance your understanding of Canela life. Views of festivals, sports and activities of individuals will develop your appreciation of the lifeways of the Canela. Find a literature section that gives you anthropological information about the Canela, and locate links to the Canela video “Mending Ways” and to on-going research by Brazilian experts.
- Handbook of North American Indians
The Handbook is a multivolume comprehensive encyclopedia of Native Americans living north of Mesoamerica. This site provides a list of titles - with volume numbers, publication dates, editors' names, brief descriptions of content, ISBN numbers, and prices - of the volumes that have been published. It also includes a link to the U.S. Government Online Bookstore, from which one can buy the volumes.
- Human Origins Program
Describes the Smithsonian Human Origins Program, offers a virtual tour of the Hall of Human Ancestors in the National Museum of Natural History, reports the latest findings in paleoanthropology, enables a user to e-mail the Smithsonian paleoanthropologists questions about human origins, and provides links to related websites.
- Ives Goddard's Home Page
In his home page, Smithsonian anthropological linguist Ives Goddard, a specialist in Alonquian languages, provides online access to several of his recent articles on Native American languages and linguistics. Among these articles are 'I am a Red-Skin': The Adoption of a Native American Expression (1769-1826), and The Identity of Red Thunder Cloud. The site also includes a link to A Meskwaki Winter Story, a video presentation of his translation of a Meskwaki folktale traditionally told in winter. The story is called The Married Couple: the Man Whose Wife Was Wooed by a Bear.
- Kayapó Headdresses
This online exhibit displays beautiful feather headdresses from South America that are a part of the Smithsonian collection which is not on public display, except via the Web. Includes photos and text.
- National Anthropological Archives (NAA) and Human Studies Film Archives (HSFA)
These archives collect and preserve historical and contemporary anthropological materials that document the world's cultures and the history of the discipline. Their collections include manuscripts, fieldnotes, correspondence, photographs, maps, sound recordings, film and video, all of which can be searched online. Selected finding aids are also available, as well as links to ethnographic archives and resources, sites about anthropologists, and the Guide to the Preservation of Anthropological Records. The site also features several online exhibits, including Lakota Winter Counts.
- National Museum of the American Indian
Information on the collections and exhibits of the Smithsonian's newest museum, as well as publications and recordings, film and video, events and activities, and educational resources and programs.
- Native American Repatriation Review Committee
The Review Committee was established by Congress to monitor and review the repatriation process at the Smithsonian. In carrying out its duties, the committee is required to ensure fair and objective consideration of all relevant evidence, upon request of any affected party, review any findings of cultural affiliation, and facilitate the resolution of any dispute between tribes concerning the repatriation of remains and objects. For the first time, the public can access information about the Review Committee and its members online. An especially useful feature of this site is its link to A Research Guide to the Native American Collections in the National Anthropological Archives and Human Studies Film Archives.
- Red Cloud's Manikin and His Uncle's Shirt: Historical Representation in the Museum as Seen Through Photo Analysis
This site presents a Smithsonian anthropologist's study of photographs of early manikins representing Plains Indians. The manikins were displayed in the Smithsonian Institution in the 1870s. The kinds of research required and the types of information that can be retrieved from historical photographs are exemplified through the analysis of these images.
- Repatriation Office
This site gives detailed descriptions of the Office's functions and responsibilities and provides repatriation reports and tables showing repatriation of archaeological and ethnological materials, as well as human remains.
- The Search for a Past: The Prehistory of the Indigenous Saami in Northern Coastal Sweden
The origin of the Saami (also known as the Lapps) and their language and culture is a much debated issue in Nordic research. This colorful, well-organized site reports a Smithsonian archaeological project whose goal is to gather data that would help to resolve this issue. At the top of the introductory page are red icons bearing gold Saami symbols. The icons lead to information about the project's research team, statements of research objectives and hypotheses, and to sections on fieldwork, archaeological sites from periods of Saami prehistory, selective bibliography, and weblinks.
- Smithsonian Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage
The Folklife Center provides images and text from its recent events and exhibitions, including the Festival of American Folklife, and much more - notably, a description of the holdings of the Ralph Rinzler Folklife Archives and Collections, searchable catalogs of Smithsonian Folkways Recordings, and digital downloads of music from Smithsonian Global Sound.
- Smithsonian Center for Materials Research and Education (SCMRE)
A rich source of information about conservation, preservation, technical study and analysis of museum collections, this site also contains practical advice about caring for various kinds of objects, besides a schedule of courses offered by SCMRE.
- Smithsonian Expeditions
Through a series of virtual exhibits, this site offers a bilingual tour de force - in English or in Spanish - of 150 years of Smithsonian research and exploration in Latin America.
- Unmasking the Maya: The Story of Sna Jtz'ibajom
Through a combination of photographs and text -- text available in English, Spanish, and two Maya languages -- this site offers a remarkable portrait of the Maya and their culture, both ancient and modern. It makes clear that the Maya, though the inheritors of a rich history, are a living, dynamic people. The site opens with a brief presentation of ancient Maya civilization, then shows contemporary Maya traditions, American influences, and the experiences of two Mayas in the United States in the 1960s. Next follows a view of the Maya cultural cooperative, Sna Jtz'ibajom, The House of the Writer, whose programs and plays represent a renaissance of Maya culture.
- Vikings: the North Atlantic Saga
Based on a widely publicized and very successful exhibition held in 2000 in the National Museum of Natural History, this site offers a virtual tour and simulated Viking voyage for exploration of the history of the Vikings between A.D. 750 to A.D. 1500.
- Written in Stone: Inscriptions from the National Museum of Saudi Arabia
This resource presents selected pre-Islamic and Islamic inscriptions from the Epigraphy Collections of Saudi Arabia's National Museum. Originally found carved or engraved on stones, mountains, or cliff faces throughout Saudi Arabia, these writings are like an open library of the region's cultural and linguistic heritage. Scripts used in the Arabian peninsula developed from the earliest pictograph-like Thamudic inscriptions into the monumental writing and calligraphic traditions of the Islamic period.
Other Smithsonian Resources: