Shell bracelet (Conus spp.) with ancient repairs, from Cave 23, Suluan District, island of Samar, Philippines. Date unknown. Asian Archaeology, UM Philippine Expedition. UMMAA 34482.

From 1922 to 1925, Carl E. Guthe, the founding director of the Museum, led its first overseas expedition in the Philippines (then a U.S. colony). Over three years, Guthe excavated more than 450 sites throughout the southern Philippines. Most were burial sites, dating from the 14th through 17th century AD. The Philippine Expedition Collection of more than 15,000 objects includes local and imported ceramics, ornaments, and metal objects, as well as human remains. Recent research on the collection by scholars from the U.S., Philippines, China, and elsewhere continues to add new knowledge to the study of the Southeast Asian past. This marine shell bracelet was recovered in excavations of a larger burial cave on the island of Samar in the southern Philippines. Ancient repairs show that it was valued by its owner.

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In honor of the University of Michigan’s 2017 bicentennial, we are celebrating the remarkable archaeological and ethnographic collections and rich legacy of research and teaching at the Museum of Anthropological Archaeology by posting one entry a day for 200 days. The entries will highlight objects from the collections, museum personalities, and UMMAA expeditions. The Kelsey Museum of Archaeology is also posting each day for 200 days on Twitter and Facebook (follow along at #KMA200). After the last post, an exhibition on two centuries of archaeology at U-M opens at the Kelsey. Visit the exhibit—a joint project of the UMMAA and the Kelsey—from October 18, 2017 to May 27, 2018.