Accession number 1 in the UMMAA collections consists of nearly 800 objects acquired by U-M zoologist Joseph Beal Steere during his remarkable 1870–1875 collecting expedition. Steere’s trip took him to Brazil, Peru, Taiwan, China, and the Philippines. Rice Aner Beal, Steere’s mother’s cousin and the owner and editor of Ann Arbor’s weekly newspaper, sponsored the expedition in exchange for regular reports of his travels. In addition to the anthropological objects, Steere shipped a remarkable 60,000-plus zoological and botanical specimens to Ann Arbor. This image is a snapshot of some of the Museum’s Steere objects: ceramic adorno faces from Brazil (see Day 16); Chimú-period earthenware jars from the Peruvian coast; a porcelain Buddha from Xiamen, China; bamboo baskets from Taiwan; and a wooden spoon from the Philippines (see Day 51). Steere Expedition objects will be featured in the Excavating Archaeology @U-M 1817–2017 exhibition at the Kelsey Museum, opening October 18, 2017.
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.