Anthropology at Carnegie Museum of Natural History
The staff of Anthropology has conducted research on a wide range of anthropological topics through the decades. In addition to the investigations made by our own curators and collection managers, we welcome the utilization of our collections by qualified academics and professionals in studies on a variety of subjects. Affiliated research and field associates enhance the staff's archaeological and ethnological research throughout the world.
Current archaeological research encompasses numerous areas of investigation, including the re-examination and interpretation of archival photographs and collections from previous field expeditions in SE Utah, the documentation of the domestication of the horse in the Eurasian steppes (with a research focus predominantly in Kazakhstan), the origins and development of the Arabian horse breed, Saudi Arabian prehistory, and the CT scanning of an Egyptian child mummy from our collection. Previous prehistoric archeological research focused on Native American maritime adaptations on Martha’s Vineyard as well as research on a variety of topics in the Caribbean, Peru, and western Pennsylvania. Work in historical archaeology included investigations of Pittsburgh’s commercial urban center.
Current ethnological research includes the identification of organic materials used in personal adornment by native peoples of the Amazon Basin of South America and the origins and development of weaving by American Indians in eastern North America. In the past, ethnological research focused on traditional women’s art of the Lakota of South Dakota, American Indian tourist and folk art, and the significance of costume styles of the Quichua of Ecuador.
The museum's Conservation department works closely with Anthropology to ensure that the objects in the collection are in a stable condition and accessible for exhibit and research.