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Northwestern University (Evanston, Ill.). Department of Anthropology

 Organization

The Northwestern University Department of Anthropology was among the second generation of anthropology departments in the United States. It was founded in 1938, when it was formally separated from the Department of Sociology and Anthropology. Melville J. Herskovits, who joined the Sociology Department's faculty in 1927 as Assistant Professor of Anthropology, was instrumental in developing the four-field Anthropology Department at Northwestern (sociocultural, biological, and linguistic anthropology, and archaeology).

In 1929 the Department of Sociology was renamed the Department of Sociology and Anthropology. Herskovits served as Chair of the Anthropology Department from its founding in 1938 until 1956. The Department awarded its first Ph.D. in 1939 to William R. Bascom, who immediately joined the Northwestern faculty and later served as Chair of the Anthropology Department in 1956-57.

In 1943, Northwestern University purchased the anthropology library of the late Professor Franz Boas, under whom Herskovits had studied at Columbia University. The collection, some 5,000 volumes and 10,000 reprints, was considered one of the largest and most complete collections of its time and was named the Franz Boas Memorial Library in Anthropology at Deering Library.

When Herskovits founded Northwestern's Program in African Studies in 1948, it was the first formally instituted interdisciplinary African Studies program at a university in the United States. Northwestern, with its Herskovits Africana Collection, is now considered one of the nation's leading centers of African Studies. Under Herskovits' direction, and with a generous grant from the Carnegie Corporation, Northwestern established an African Study Center in 1952. Herskovits was appointed Chair of African Studies in 1961. He died in 1963.

Found in 7 Collections and/or Records:

Records of the Anthropology Department

 Collection
Identifier: 11/3/2/4
Abstract The Records of the Anthropology Department, filling five boxes, span the years 1964 to 1973. No records exist for the 1965-66 academic year. The bulk of the records fall between 1964 and 1969 and include, but are not limited to, annual reports, applications for graduate study or employment, budgets, correspondence, curriculum, department memos, faculty curriculum vitae, and materials relating to fellowships, the Program of African Studies, research proposals, and summer sessions.

George Dalton (1926-1991) Papers

 Collection
Identifier: 11/3/10/7
Abstract Economist George Dalton's papers fill 59 boxes spanning the period 1945-1991. Most of the material dates from 1960 to 1991. The papers are organized in five main categories: biographical materials, education files, correspondence, teaching files, and publications. Small amounts of material are arranged under the headings research files and papers presented before professional organizations. Within each category the files are arranged alphabetically by folder title unless stated otherwise.

Mary Douglas (1921-2007) Papers

 Collection
Identifier: 11/3/2/2
Abstract This series of six and one-half boxes contains materials relating to social anthropologist Dame Mary Tew Douglas' scholarly research and publication. In addition to a small amount of biographical materials, the papers are arranged into two subseries: African research materials, consisting chiefly of research notes, diaries and correspondence; and Publications, including notes, drafts, clippings, reviews, and correspondence.

Melville J. Herskovits (1895-1963) Biographical Materials

 Collection
Identifier: 35/6/1
Abstract Biographical materials relating to Melville J. Herskovits fill one archival box and include obituaries, news clippings, Northwestern news releases, correspondence pertaining to university matters, Northwestern faculty information, conference programs, a statement Herskovits gave before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee (for the report, drafts, and research materials, see series 35/6, box 99-102), and reprints of Herskovits' scholarly articles. The material is arranged in chronological...

Melville J. Herskovits (1895-1963) Papers

 Collection
Identifier: 35/6
Abstract Anthropologist Melville Jean Herskovits presided over the creation of the department of anthropology at Northwestern University in 1938. In 1961, Northwestern appointed Herskovits to the Chair of African Studies, the first such position in the United States. The Melville J. Herskovits Papers document Herskovits' career during a period of very rapid growth of both anthropology and African studies. The bulk of the collection consists of professional correspondence and manuscripts of publications,...

Francis L. K. Hsu (1909-1999) Papers

 Collection
Identifier: 11/3/2/5
Abstract Dating from 1940-2000 and filling 45 boxes, the Francis L. K. Hsu Papers document Hsu's prominence as an anthropology professor and scholar specializing in kinship patterns and cultural comparisons between large, literate societies, namely, the United States, China, India, and Japan. The papers consist of biographical materials, correspondence, teaching files, student files, research files and notebooks, interview transcripts, lecture/conference notes and records, and publication files.

Oswald Werner (1928- ) Papers

 Collection
Identifier: 11/3/2/6
Abstract Oswald Werner joined the faculty of Northwestern in 1963 and remained until his retirement in 1998. His research focused on linguistics as well as cultural anthropology, particularly as they related to the Navajo. The Oswald Werner Papers fill forty-one boxes and span the years 1959 to 2007. They are arranged into six major categories: biographical materials, correspondence, Northwestern University general files, Northwestern University teaching materials, grants files, and publications.