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Theses/Dissertations

Anthropology

University of Wisconsin Milwaukee

Smithsonian

Publication Year

Articles 1 - 2 of 2

Full-Text Articles in Library and Information Science

The Unsung Evolutionist: Charles Rau's Swiss Lake Dwelling Collection At The Smithsonian Institution, Liam C. Murphy May 2016

The Unsung Evolutionist: Charles Rau's Swiss Lake Dwelling Collection At The Smithsonian Institution, Liam C. Murphy

Theses and Dissertations

During the second half of the nineteenth century, museums and collectors around the world engaged in a collecting frenzy focused on objects from the Swiss Alpine sites known as Pfahlbauten. Romantic reconstructions of these sites captured the antiquarian imagination and resulted in an artifact diaspora. Charles (Carl) Rau, a German-American archaeologist who became the first Curator of Antiquities at the Smithsonian Institution (SI), collected several hundred Neolithic and Bronze Age artifacts from the lake dwelling sites of Robenhausen and Auvernier, donating this material as well as his library to the SI upon his death in 1886. This thesis investigates the …


Historic Museum Collections As Primary Sources: Thomas Wilson's Robenhausen Material At The Smithsonian Institution's National Museum Of Natural History, Kathryn G. Maxwell Dec 2013

Historic Museum Collections As Primary Sources: Thomas Wilson's Robenhausen Material At The Smithsonian Institution's National Museum Of Natural History, Kathryn G. Maxwell

Theses and Dissertations

This thesis investigates the role of early museum curators and their collecting practices in the construction and transmission of archaeological knowledge. During the late 19th century, artifacts from Swiss lake-dwelling sites, including Robenhausen, a Neolithic and early Bronze Age site located on Lake Pfäffikon in Switzerland, were sold and traded in a "lake-dwelling diaspora" to many collectors and museums in the US and UK (Arnold 2013:877). A collection of Robenhausen material acquired by the Smithsonian Institution's (SI) United States National Museum (USNM) in 1904 is used as a proxy for the collecting practices of the time and serves as a …