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Hemenway Expedition Records 1886-1914: A Finding Aid

Peabody Museum Archihves
Harvard University


©2001 The President and Fellows of Harvard College

Descriptive Summary

Repository: Peabody Museum Archives
Call No.: 43-39A, 46-73, 13-26, 980-2, 2000.20, 2001.7
Location: PM Archives
Title: Hemenway Expedition Records 1886-1914
Creator: Peabody Museum; Old South Church (Boston)
Quantity: 5.5 linear feet (11 boxes); 1 map case drawer

Acquisition Information:

The Hemenway Expedition Records consist of six different accessions from varied sources. Some of the materials accompanied artifact collections that were not accessioned until 1946, although they arrived at the museum between 1886 and 1889. In 1977 Hemenway documentation on artifacts transferred to the museum in 1930 was found in the Old South Church in Boston and this documentation was transferred to and accessioned by the Museum in 1980. In 1913 and 1914 Mary's son Augustus Hemenway commissioned Charles Clark Willoughby and Mr. R. G. Fuller for an archaeological expedition to Arizona; the documents from this expedition are also included in the Hemenway Expedition Records. The Fewkes Accretion is made up of material that were transferred from the Tozzer Library to the museum in 2000 and 2001. These materials came to the library when it was part of the museum in 1912 and 1931, and were moved when the Tozzer was built in 1977. The Tozzer Special Collections "returned" the two notebooks and publication to the museum archives because the materials relate directly to museum artifact holdings from the Expedition.

Creator Sketch

In 1879, Frank Hamilton Cushing, a leading Smithsonian ethnologist, was asked by the Bureau of American Ethnology to join a collecting expedition that traveled to the Zuni Pueblo in New Mexico. Here Cushing became convinced that a long-term stay was necessary to conduct his research using pioneering anthropological methodologies of participant-observer and the uniqueness of the "Zuni idea" of culture (Haskell, 1993, p. 10). The Hemenway Expedition to the Southwest was conceived in the summer of 1886, after Cushing sent an appeal to Mrs. Mary Hemenway of Boston. Mary Hemenway was an outstanding philanthropist who passionately supported historic preservation in Boston, many and varied educational efforts, and "a perspective from which to cope with the rapid changes of a new urban and industrial order (ibid, pp.5-6)." Cushing's enthusiasm and his concept that "archaeology is simply ethnology carried back into prehistoric times" (ibid, p.14) persuaded Hemenway that this would be an expedition worth backing to the tune of an initial investment of $100,000.
The Hemenway Expedition focused on the ethnological, the anthropological, the historical, and the archaeological. The Expedition arrived in New Mexico in December 1886, went to Arizona to excavate in January of 1887, and returned to Zuni in June 1888. During that time Cushing and the other expedition members (Cushing's wife Emily Magill, his sister-in-law and artist Margaret Magill, anthropologist Dr. Herman F.C. ten Kate, historian Dr. Adolf Bandelier, topographer and field manager Charles Garlick, general secretary and draftsman Frederick Webb Hodge, and comparative anatomist Dr. J.L. Wortman) excavated eleven sites, including thirty-four compounds at Los Muertos while conducting ethnographic research among the local populations. In May of 1889 Jesse Walter Fewkes, a classmate of Mary's son Augustus, was appointed supervisor of digging, and soon took over the expedition due to Cushing's failing health. In 1891 Fewkes moved the expedition to Hopi. The Hemenway Expedition continued until 1894 when Mary Hemenway died at age 74.
Mary Hemenway's son Augustus funded another expedition to Arizona in 1913-14. This expedition was archaeological in nature. Hemenway hired Charles Clark Willoughby and R. G. Fuller to explore various Chinlee Valley sites including Mesa Verde and Tseonitsosi Canon.


Scope and Content

The Hemenway Expedition Records reveal the working relationships in field correspondence between expedition members and with Mary Hemenway; the intellectual products of the work in Cushing, Bandelier, and ten Kate's ethnological manuscripts; and the raw data of site notes and cards, reports, plans, and field notebooks. The records also contain some of Margaret Magill's watercolors of archaeological artifacts. The materials are organized primarily by chronological accession and then according to type, i.e. correspondence, field notes, reports and watercolors.
The materials are arranged in three records groups: A. Hemenway Expedition Records 1884-1894; B. Augustus Hemenway Expedition to Arizona Records 1912-1914; and, C. the Fewkes Accertion 1891-95. Within the groups, physical arrangement is chronological and by content. The records are described in the following manner according to content and format:

A. Hemenway Expedition Records 1884-1894

B. Augustus Hemenway Expedition to Arizona Records 1912-1914

C. Fewkes Acceretion 1891-95

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