Robert S. Peabody Institute of Archaeology

Robert S. Peabody Institute of Archaeology Exhibitions are not our focus, however, we are happy to talk with you about what we do or provide a tour of our collections.

Robert S. Peabody (Phillips Academy Class of 1857) founded our institution in 1901 with three goals in mind: to introduce the students of Phillips Academy to the world of archaeology, to promote archaeological research, and to provide a place for students to gather. Today’s Peabody Museum employs collaborative learning to actively engage students, teachers, scientists, and Native Americans with the museum’s significant archaeology and anthropology collections, while also encouraging and enlivening cultural discourse on race and gender. Exhibitions are not our focus, however, we are happy to talk with you about what we do or provide a tour of our collections. For more information visit our blog at peabody.andover.edu or contact us at [email protected].

Learn about Peabody Director, Ryan Wheeler's latest book! Co-edited with Oxford's Joanna Ostapkowicz and published last ...
05/13/2019
Iconography and Wetsite Archaeology of Florida’s Watery Realms

Learn about Peabody Director, Ryan Wheeler's latest book! Co-edited with Oxford's Joanna Ostapkowicz and published last month, this blog explores the origins of the volume and some of the exciting research presented.

In April the University Press of Florida published Iconography and Wetsite Archaeology of Florida’s Watery Realms, my new book, co-edited with Oxford’s Joanna Ostapkowicz. Watery Realms highlights …

Scotty with Scotty. These photos--a bequest to the Peabody from Richard "Scotty" MacNeish's friend and editor Jane Libby...
05/07/2019

Scotty with Scotty. These photos--a bequest to the Peabody from Richard "Scotty" MacNeish's friend and editor Jane Libby--show Scotty with with his "copy" in Fernando Ramirez Osorio's mural "A New World" in the Tehuacan municipal palace. Osorio's 1969 mural documents the history of Tehuacan, including MacNeish's archaeological-botanical project in the 1960s. Many thanks to Dan Sandweiss, who first told us about the mural!

The Mansion House site has a significant history and importance to the Phillips Academy campus and local community. Lear...
05/06/2019
Mansion House Excavations

The Mansion House site has a significant history and importance to the Phillips Academy campus and local community. Learn more about the current archaeological excavations taking place at the site during the Summer Session with the Lower School Institute.

The Mansion House at Phillips Academy Andover is a site of significant historical importance in the local community. Built during the Revolutionary War in 1782 (though fully completed in 1785) it w…

Earlier this month, the Peabody attended the annual meeting of the Society for American Archaeology (SAA). Amongst the m...
04/30/2019
#SAA2019 #MeToo

Earlier this month, the Peabody attended the annual meeting of the Society for American Archaeology (SAA). Amongst the many topics and research presented and discussed, issues of sexual harassment and discrimination were brought to light. Peabody Director, Ryan Wheeler, provides commentary of the #MeToo Movement at the Society for American Archaeology meeting.

This time of year usually sees a blog post about our attendance at the annual meetings of the Society for American Archaeology (SAA). The meetings are held in late March or April and attract thousa…

Learn about soil analysis through the Tehuacán Archaeological-Botanical Project by Richard "Scotty" MacNeish in the 196...
04/29/2019
The Dirt on Soil Analysis

Learn about soil analysis through the Tehuacán Archaeological-Botanical Project by Richard "Scotty" MacNeish in the 1960s. Soil is an important clue in indicating how old a site is and what type of environment was present.

When archaeologists excavate a site, they dig through soil layers formed by the activities of past people. What archaeologists recover from these layers provides clues about what happened at that s…

During Spring Break 2019, eighteen students from Phillips Academy traveled across China as part of the Learning in the W...
04/23/2019
Student Photo Contest: Adventures in Ancient China

During Spring Break 2019, eighteen students from Phillips Academy traveled across China as part of the Learning in the World Program. Here are a few of our favorite photos taken by some of these students on their trip!

Eighteen Phillips Academy students traveled across China during spring break 2019 on the inaugural Adventures in Ancient China trip, part of the Learning in the World program. Student travelers vis…

The Robert S. Peabody Institute of Archaeology collection comprises nearly 600,000 artifacts, photographs, and archives....
04/08/2019
More Than a Number: Cataloguing the Peabody Collection

The Robert S. Peabody Institute of Archaeology collection comprises nearly 600,000 artifacts, photographs, and archives. Learn how the collection is catalogued through the Inventory and Rehousing Project.

My name is Emma Cook, I am the Administrative Assistant at the Robert S. Peabody Institute of Archaeology.

Where did they come from and why are they a problem? Read on to learn about mold spore activity in the environment and h...
04/03/2019
Uninvited Guests

Where did they come from and why are they a problem? Read on to learn about mold spore activity in the environment and how salts are a chemical agent of deterioration in collections.

The objects were cleaned before they were stored inside their new boxes to remove salt and minimize the risk of mold spreading to unaffected objects.

We reached our goal! Read on for the results from PA Giving Day. Thank you for all the support! #PAGivingDay
03/28/2019
#PAGivingDay

We reached our goal! Read on for the results from PA Giving Day. Thank you for all the support! #PAGivingDay

We are delighted to share that we reached our goal of matching Peter Hetzler’s (Class of 1972) generous $10,000 challenge during PA Giving Day 2019! Jenny Elkus (Class of 1992) also successfully ch…

We are over half way there! Our generous match from Peter Hetzler '72 still has $4,166 to go. So, lots of opportunities ...
03/27/2019
PA Giving Day 2019

We are over half way there! Our generous match from Peter Hetzler '72 still has $4,166 to go. So, lots of opportunities to help us! #PAGivingDay

Be BIG, be BOLD, be BLUE! Join me for PA Giving Day—and make a difference for Andover students.

We have several outstanding challenges for PA Giving Day--it's a great way to support the Peabody! #PAGivingDay
03/27/2019
PA Giving Day 2019

We have several outstanding challenges for PA Giving Day--it's a great way to support the Peabody! #PAGivingDay

Be BIG, be BOLD, be BLUE! Join me for PA Giving Day—and make a difference for Andover students.

We hope you join us tomorrow for PA Giving Day! We are hoping to have support from at least 60 people--a few more from l...
03/26/2019
Phillips Academy | PA Giving Day

We hope you join us tomorrow for PA Giving Day! We are hoping to have support from at least 60 people--a few more from last year. Consider giving to the Peabody! #PAGivingDay

Andover is an independent, coed, boarding high school serving a diverse community of students who come from across the country and around the world.

They're back! During spring break 2019, eighteen students took part in one of the newest Learning in the World programs ...
03/26/2019
China Travelers Meet Tu’er Ye

They're back! During spring break 2019, eighteen students took part in one of the newest Learning in the World programs at Phillips Academy - Adventures in Ancient China. Read on to learn more about their experiences!

Adventures in Ancient China is one of the newest Learning in the World programs at Phillips Academy. During spring break 2019 eighteen students experienced some of China’s most dynamic history and …

Robert S. Peabody Institute of Archaeology's cover photo
03/19/2019

Robert S. Peabody Institute of Archaeology's cover photo

Mark your calendars! The third PA Giving Day is Wednesday, March 27, 2019! Join us in support of everything that makes A...
03/12/2019
Phillips Academy | PA Giving Day

Mark your calendars! The third PA Giving Day is Wednesday, March 27, 2019! Join us in support of everything that makes Andover unique and beloved. Last year the Peabody Institute garnered 60 gifts, nearly doubling PA Giving Day gifts in 2017! This year we hope to have more challenges, more social media posts, and even more support! Learn more at https://pagivingday.andover.edu

Andover is an independent, coed, boarding high school serving a diverse community of students who come from across the country and around the world.

The Lucy Foster ceramics are a unique find amongst the Peabody’s extensive collection. Read on to learn more about how...
03/05/2019
Lucy Foster’s Ceramic Collection

The Lucy Foster ceramics are a unique find amongst the Peabody’s extensive collection. Read on to learn more about how these ceramics give insight into Lucy Foster and her life as a freed woman in Andover over 200 years ago.

For archaeologists, ceramics are one of the most useful artifacts that can be found during an excavation. They can help date an archaeological site, they can shed light on the domestic habits of th…

Families dropped into the Peabody last week for a fun-filled morning of archaeology-themed activities. Read on to learn ...
02/27/2019
Family Fun with Archaeology

Families dropped into the Peabody last week for a fun-filled morning of archaeology-themed activities. Read on to learn more about one of our newest experiences - writing underwater!

During school vacation week the Peabody hosted families for archaeology themed crafts and activities.

Artifacts from the Peabody at the Smithsonian?! Read on to learn more about the Lucy Foster Collection.
02/14/2019
Peabody at the Smithsonian

Artifacts from the Peabody at the Smithsonian?! Read on to learn more about the Lucy Foster Collection.

In 2018, the National Museum of African American History and Culture (NMAAHC) contacted the Peabody to request the loan of objects associated with Lucy Foster, a free Black woman, who lived in the …

Manoomin (“wild rice”) now has legal rights. At the close of 2018, the White Earth band of Ojibwe passed a law forma...
02/10/2019
Why the White Earth Band of Ojibwe Legally Recognized Wild Rice's Rights | Civil Eats

Manoomin (“wild rice”) now has legal rights. At the close of 2018, the White Earth band of Ojibwe passed a law formally recognizing the Rights of Manoomin. According to a resolution, these rights were recognized because “it has become necessary to provide a legal basis to protect wild rice and fresh water resources as part of our primary treaty foods for future generations.”

Under the Rights of Nature, the plant, as well as the freshwater resources it needs to survive, now have an inalienable right to exist.

Love it when ancient literature meets the graphic novel? Enjoying this new comics-style version of the Epic of Gilgamesh...
02/06/2019
The Epic of Gilgamesh

Love it when ancient literature meets the graphic novel? Enjoying this new comics-style version of the Epic of Gilgamesh.

The most complete Gilgamesh in translation--including the new discoveries from tablet V.THE EPIC OF GILGAMESH is the Ur epic--the hero's journey, quest, and education--inscribed onto damp clay tablets several millennia before Odysseus or the priest of Ecclesiastes found their voice...

Looking for something to do during school vacation week? Have you ever made a fishing net? Read on for more information ...
01/24/2019
Same old? Same old? Frayed Knot!

Looking for something to do during school vacation week? Have you ever made a fishing net? Read on for more information about our Family Fun with Archaeology event and learn more about one of our new interactive activities, net making!

The Peabody creates new activity for our Family Fun with Archaeology event in February.

New and exciting things are happening in our collections! Read about the Peabody Institute's new transcribing project, m...
01/23/2019
Transcribing the Collection

New and exciting things are happening in our collections! Read about the Peabody Institute's new transcribing project, made possible by a grant from the Abbot Academy Fund. This project will help make the Peabody's collection more accessible to staff, researchers, students, and tribes.

Original cataloging records at the Institute are largely on paper in two formats – ledger books that document the first phase of collections and individual catalog cards that were in use through th…

Meet John, our new Inventory Specialist at the Robert S. Peabody Institute! See our blog to read more about John and wha...
01/22/2019
A New Face in the Basement

Meet John, our new Inventory Specialist at the Robert S. Peabody Institute! See our blog to read more about John and what he is doing in our collections.

Hi there! My name is John and I am the new Inventory Specialist at the Robert S. Peabody Institute. As Inventory Specialist my primary task is to work on the ongoing inventory and rehousing project…

Check out our blog post on one of our newest Learning in the World Programs - Adventures in Ancient China! Offered by th...
01/16/2019
Adventures in Ancient China—the Countdown Begins!

Check out our blog post on one of our newest Learning in the World Programs - Adventures in Ancient China! Offered by the Tang Institute and Robert S. Peabody Institute of Archaeology, eighteen Phillips Academy students will make the trip during Spring Break, March 2019!

During spring break, March 2019, eighteen Phillips Academy students will accompany Peabody director Ryan Wheeler, instructor in Chinese Congmin Zhao, and Anne Martin-Montgomery, Chinese for Familie…

We are sad to report the passing of Jane Libby, longtime editor and companion of former Peabody director Richard "Scotty...
01/04/2019
Remembering the life of Jane Libby Dec 28

We are sad to report the passing of Jane Libby, longtime editor and companion of former Peabody director Richard "Scotty" MacNeish.

Jane Libby passed away Dec 28 in Haverhill, This is the full obituary story where you can express condolences and share memories.

Happy to be a signatory to this press release from the Association on American Indian Affairs!
12/07/2018

Happy to be a signatory to this press release from the Association on American Indian Affairs!

Native American Sacred and Cultural Patrimony is not "art" and are living and breathing beings that should be returned to their original communities. INVEST IN CONTEMPORARY NATIVE ARTISTS! https://bit.ly/2QwQ83h

"Poll respondents also strongly believe in archaeological education, with 87% saying that students should learn about ar...
12/03/2018
American Perceptions of Archaeology Poll 2018

"Poll respondents also strongly believe in archaeological education, with 87% saying that students should learn about archaeology in school at some point in their academic career."

Washington, DC A majority of Americans overwhelmingly value the work of archaeologists, according to a recent poll released by the Society for American Archaeology (SAA) and Ipsos, with a clear majority supporting increased protections and funding for archaeology. The poll found that 93% of American...

Please consider a small gift to support the Peabody's educational efforts on #GivingTuesday. Many thanks!
11/27/2018
Give Now | Phillips Academy

Please consider a small gift to support the Peabody's educational efforts on #GivingTuesday. Many thanks!

Support Knowledge & Goodness today!

The discovery of the Ancient One (Kennewick Man) inspired Beth Piatote, an associate professor of Native American studie...
11/26/2018
Podcast: Native American Antigone explores universal values of honoring the dead

The discovery of the Ancient One (Kennewick Man) inspired Beth Piatote, an associate professor of Native American studies at UC Berkeley and a member of the Nez Perce tribe, to write the play Antíkoni — a Native American version of the Greek tragedy Antigone.

Associate professor Beth Piatote’s first play, Antíkoni, was performed in the Hearst Museum of Anthropology this month

Some great resources for approaching Thanksgiving in (or out of) the classroom. Even if your school missed an opportunit...
11/20/2018
Teaching Thanksgiving in a Socially Responsible Way

Some great resources for approaching Thanksgiving in (or out of) the classroom. Even if your school missed an opportunity to think about Thanksgiving in a different way this year it's not too late to talk with your kids.

11/14/2018

This is the entertainment when you attend the AAIA 4th annual repatriation conference! Thank you Forest County Potawatomi for hosting!

Fall at the Peabody today. If you are interested in visiting us, consider coming to our book celebration next Wednesday!
10/30/2018

Fall at the Peabody today. If you are interested in visiting us, consider coming to our book celebration next Wednesday!

Good crowd for our session on NAGPRA and repatriation at #ATALM2018
10/10/2018

Good crowd for our session on NAGPRA and repatriation at #ATALM2018

Color guard ceremony at opening of ATALM conference! #ATALM2018
10/10/2018

Color guard ceremony at opening of ATALM conference! #ATALM2018

10/09/2018

Headed to indigenous museums conference #ATALM2018

09/28/2018

American Association for State and Local History attendees--come to our session on the Truth & Consequences of NAGPRA, today, 12noon #AASLH18

3D printed cranium of Homo naledi for today's Human Origins class. Many thanks to the Oliver Wendell Holmes Library Make...
09/20/2018

3D printed cranium of Homo naledi for today's Human Origins class. Many thanks to the Oliver Wendell Holmes Library Makerspace!

Great talk last night by archaeologist Eric Johnson on the Flagg Swamp Rockshelter! Stay tuned for info on October's spe...
09/20/2018

Great talk last night by archaeologist Eric Johnson on the Flagg Swamp Rockshelter! Stay tuned for info on October's speaker in the monthly MAS Gene Winter chapter's lecture series!

09/14/2018

Everyone and everything at the Peabody is okay!

Yesterday around 5pm Phillips Academy responded quickly to evacuation orders, due to gas fires and explosions in Lawrence, Andover, and North Andover. The students were well cared for by their house counselors, faculty, and administrators and ultimately were able to get back into their dorms around 11pm. We have no classes today, though several of us are here and working in the building.

Last night we had just begun Thursday night quiet study at the Peabody and had several students in the building. They evacuated and joined their peers.

Peabody director Ryan Wheeler remained at the Peabody until just after 7pm to ensure that there was no immediate danger to our collections. Rachel Manning, collections assistant, arrived and kept an eye on things for another hour. By this time utility workers had depressurized the gas lines in our vicinity and all electricity had been shut down to the towns.

Happily the Peabody has never had gas service, so we were relatively safe. Gas lines do exist in the area and provide service to many of the homes and apartments on campus and in the vicinity. There is an access point to one line just outside our building and we watched the utility worker depressurize this and shut it off.

This was a pretty scary emergency, especially considering the scale and scope (and thinking about the recent near total loss of the Brazilian national museum), and it’s absolutely heartbreaking to see the loss of homes in our Merrimack Valley community, as well as learning about the injuries to dozens of people and at least one death.

Many thanks for your calls, emails, and queries--happily we are okay, as are the priceless collections within our walls.

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Phillips Academy
Andover, MA
01810

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