Six Decades at the Haffenreffer Museum of Anthropology

Tag: 1960s (Page 1 of 2)

Dr. Barry R. Bainton, ‘63/64 – Applied Anthropologist (retired)

Barry Bainton, 2017

“6 days ago, December 12th, Dr. Giddings died – as the result of an automobile accident. I have lost a great teacher and even greater friend. I only hope that I can be half as good an anthropologist as he. God – how I wish IT hadn’t happened,”  (p.32, of My Peace Corps Journal, Friday December 18th 1964).

Dr. Giddings (the only Brown Professor I had who was always “Doctor” to me) was a teacher, mentor, and friend during my undergraduate career at Brown. After I graduated, a year after my entering class, I joined the newly created Peace Corps and was sent to Peru. Dr. Giddings encouraged me to make a collection of ethnographic artifacts for the Museum while I was there. I left for Peru a month after the Gulf of Tonkin Resolution (August 7th, 1964). This marked the formal start of the United States’ involvement in the Viet Nam War. Three months later, I received a letter along with a newspaper clipping from Judy Huntsman, Dr. Giddings’ graduate student and fellow worker at the Museum, announcing his death. Two years later, I returned to Rhode Island with the collection.   Continue reading

Barbara Hail – Curator Emerita

All Things Related

Hail at the Brooklyn Museum when consultant for TIPI exhibit, 2011.

In 1955 the Haffenreffer Museum of Anthropology transformed from a private collection with few viewers to a university museum with a diversified audience and a profound commitment to the indigenous peoples, world-wide, whose artifacts the museum held.  Douglas Anderson embedded this philosophy into our first mission statement, writing that we have a responsibility to the communities from whom our collections have come. Continue reading

Ellen Wilson – Emerita Museum Educator, Haffenreffer Museum

I can remember the days of Bets Giddings, Barbara Hail and me and at the beginning of our reinventing school groups’ introductions to museum education. In the beginning a great deal of our involvement at the Museum came from sitting on Bets’ deck overlooking Mount Hope Bay and discussing the ways we could develop a program for school kids that would not be a tour of the exhibits with the kids standing glassy-eyed and bored.
Continue reading

Janet E. Levy – Professor Emerita of Anthropology, UNC Charlotte

Janet, 1978, at 15Bt5, Carlson Annis site, western Kentucky.

The truth is that I never visited the Haffenreffer Museum while I was a student at Brown (1967-1971) even though I was an anthropology major.  In those days, like most undergraduate students, I did not keep a car in Providence (or even own a car, for that matter) and, as far as I know, there was no other way to access the museum.  It was a kind of “stealth” facility of the university. In fact, I’m rather surprised to discover that this is only the 60th anniversary of the Haffenreffer.  In Fall 2017, I myself will have been a member of the Brown community for 50 years, and I assumed that the Haffenreffer had “always” been there.  Continue reading

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