The archaeological excavations conducted by Warren K. Moorehead at the Hopewell site of Ross County, Ohio resulted in the removal of hundreds of thousands of ancient Native American objects. Crafted during the Middle Woodland Period, these objects began a new life in the late 19th century as archaeological artifacts divided into smaller museum collections that were shipped throughout the world. Guided by Arjun Appadurai and Igor Kopytoff’s biographical approaches to museum objects, this article will follow the experiences of one of the Hopewell site artifacts, a bear tooth with an inlaid pearl. Discussed in this article is the creation, original usage, discovery, movement, exhibition, and modern evaluation of this object. Although the focus is on a single object, the story of the bear tooth with an inlaid pearl is a mechanism for understanding the shared experiences of the entire collection and other artifacts collected in the late 19th century.
"The Journey of a Hopewell Site Artifact: Bear Canine with Inlaid Pearl at the Milwaukee Public Museum,"
Field Notes: A Journal of Collegiate Anthropology: Vol. 11
, Article 9.
Available at: https://dc.uwm.edu/fieldnotes/vol11/iss1/9