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Means, Philip A., 1892-1944, Papers, 1904-1937, inclusive: A Finding Aid

Peabody Museum Archives
Harvard University



Last update 2016 August 30

Descriptive Summary

Repository: Peabody Museum Archives, Harvard University
Call No.: 45-32
Location: Peabody Museum Archives
Title: Means, Philip A., 1892-1944, Papers,
Date(s): 1904-1937
Creator: Philip A. Means
Quantity: 1.25 linear feet
Abstract: The collection contains one box of manuscripts, notes, and reports pertaining to Peru and two boxes of bibliographic notes.

Processed by:

Elizabeth Sandager June 1995 edited by Patricia H. Kervick, Associate Archivist; February 2011

Acquisition Information:

These papers are a gift from the Estate of Philip A. Means. 1945

Access Restrictions:

Restrictions on access: none

Use Restrictions:

Restrictions on use: none

Biographical Sketch

Philip A. Means was born in Boston on April 3, 1892 and died there on November 11, 1944. Means received his A.B. from Harvard in 1915 and his M.A., also from Harvard in 1917. His studies included archaeology, history and literature. Historian and archaeologist, Means developed an early interest in Peru. In 1914-1915, Means conducted field work in Peru under the auspices of the Yale University Peruvian Expedition directed by Hiram Bingham. From 1917-1919 Means returned to Peru under the direction of the Smithsonian and American Geographic Society. From 1920-1921 Means was appointed director of the Museo Nacional (Sección de Arqueologia), Lima. From 1921-1927 Means was an associate in anthropology at the Peabody Museum, Harvard University. Means published in the area of pre-contact Andean cultures and the Spanish colonial period. His greatest contribution to prehistory was Ancient Civilizations of the Andes. This work is still considered a basic introduction to the study of the history of the Andes. A second volume, Fall of the Inca Empire followed, covering the period of Colonial history up to the rebellion of Tupac Amaru. A third volume on Republican Peru was never completed as Means delved into other periods of history resulting in a book on the discovery of America. Means had a deep love of Peru and its people and he was held in high regard by the Peruvian people, receiving the offical decoration of the order of "El Sol del Peru." Means' extensive writings include: History of the Spanish Conquest of Yucatan and of the Itzas (1917); Fall of the Inca Empire and the Spanish Rule in Peru, 1530-1780 (1932); The Spanish Main: Focus of Envy, 1492-1700 (1935);


Scope and Content Note:

The collection contains manuscripts by Means on Andean culture, including social history, weaving and textiles, as well as bibliographic notes.

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