Alexander V. Benitez, PhD
Assistant Professor of Anthropology
George Mason University
Earth Theater, First Floor Rear
Carnegie Museum of Natural History
Archaeological objects collected in the late 19th to early 20th century form the core of many anthropology museums. While some archaeologists have viewed old collections as an interesting window into our own disciplinary history, many archaeologists have long ignored them precisely because they were obtained when professional practices were less scientific and ethical. Yet, this antiquated view is quickly changing. Field archaeologists and curators are now clamoring for more organized and accessible museum collections. The Central American Ceramics Research Project offers a unique approach to addressing the monumental task of researching and bringing to light these old museum collections.
Related Publication: Alexander Benitez. “Reclaiming Museum Archaeological Collections: The GMU Mesoamerican Collections Project.” Museum Anthropology (American Anthropological Association).