From “Moustache Lifter”to Kamui PasuiInvestigating Documentation ofthe Ainu Collections at theHearst MuseumChristopher Lowman, UC Berkeley
Research Questions• What are the proveniences of the Ainu collections at the HearstMuseum?– (Who were the major donors? Who were the collectors? Were materialsarchaeological or ethnographic in origin, and how is this reflected in theassociated museum documents?)• How did recording practices change over the course of the museum’shistory?– (By studying the museum records, is it possible to determine changes in theunderstanding of Ainu cultural practices? What changes reflect the developmentof museum records as a whole?)
The Ainu• Indigenous people native to Hokkaido,Japan. Previously lived on Sakhalin(Russia) and on the Kuril Islands north ofJapan.• “Ainu” means human in their ownlanguage, separate from Japanese.• Ethnic issues surrounding identificationand prejudice. Recent political recognition.
Extent of the Ainu Population in the Past:Hokkaido, Sakhalin, and the Kuril Islandshttp://www.tofugu.com/2011/12/20/japans-resilient-native-people-the-ainu/http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Map_of_Ainu_in_Hokkaido.svg
Ainu Museums, Collections, and Exhibitions• Japan:– The Ainu Museum in Shiraoi– Nibutani Ainu Cultural Museum (Hiratori)– Tokyo National Museum• United States:– The Smithsonian Arctic Studies Center– National Archives of Anthropology,Washington DC– American Museum of Natural History, NYC– The University Museum of Archaeologyand Anthropology, UPenn– Field Museum of Natural History, Chicago– Los Angeles County Museum of NaturalHistory, California.– Elsewhere catalogued by Yoshinobu Kotani.Shiraoi Ainu Museum (Porotokotan)Nibutani Ainu Cultural Museum (Hiratori)
Ainu Collections at the Hearst• Approximately 150 objects, 18 accessions, 5 minor accessions• All 20th century, but ranging between 1906 and 1970s• Clothing and textiles, baskets, stone implements, carvedwood, ceremonial objects.Belt, Sakhalin, 1930sRush mat, tannic iron dye Bark bagPouch, 1931
Example of the Spreadsheet:Organized by Accession Number
Example of the Spreadsheet:Organized by Accession Date
Example of the Spreadsheet:Organized by Collection Date
Example Accession Folder # 1226Accession FolderDoorbookRecordThank Youto DonorPostcards
Example Accession Folder # 4574Accession FolderDoorbookRecordThank Youto DonorAdditional Comments Museum Acceptance Letters from Donor
Minor Accession 100 KZ: Pottery reconstruction from Kashiwai Shellmounds, Chiba, Japan.“Aino” Pottery. Collected and illustrated by Mamoru Kurahashi.
From “Moustache Lifter” to Prayer Stick to Kamui Pasui• Minor Accession 500 E-I: Collected by K.R. Stewart inNitai (Forest) Village on Sakhalin and donated by Mr.and Mrs. Omer C. Stewart. Likely gathered in the1930s.• Accession 838: Blair Memorial Collection. Collected inAlaska in 1934, accessioned in 1945. From a collectionthat includes Western and Southwest Native Americantribes.• Accession 4574: The most recent material bothcollected and accessioned. It was collected in 1970 andaccessioned in January 1993, by Haruo Aoki.
Next Steps• Record the objects and photographsthat have missing information.• Follow-up research using the namesof the collectors and donors.• Make contact with YoshinobuKotani to find out more about hisdocumentation of Berkeley’scollections.• Synthesize research so far in thecontext of class readings.25-302 lacks an Accession #, but does have informationabout the collector (Dr. Ronald L. Olson (1895-1979)
Thank you—Ira JacknisJunko HabuWilliam FitzhughLaura FlemingThe Arctic Studies Center at theSmithsonian