Research and acquaintance trip, June 2012

From June 4th to 8th, 2012, a delegation travelled to Washington and Philadelphia to study the work of Frank Speck and his relationships with Mashteuiatsh and Kitigan Zibi.

The delegation visited the storage spaces of one of the project’s partner institutions, the Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian (NMAI), where they were able to see objects first-hand which they had previously only seen in written documentation and photographs. They also visited the University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology (UPenn Museum), where Frank Speck taught and where some of the collections he gathered are conserved along with those of his student, Frederick Johnson. A visit was also conducted to the American Philosophical Society (APS), which holds the archives of many anthropologists, including some of Frank Speck’s notes, such as maps of family territories, from his time in Québec in the 1920s and 1930s.

The group consisted of Anita Tenasco and Peter Decontie from Kitigan Zibi, Jean-Denis Gill from Mashteuiatsh, and Élise Dubuc and research assistant Martine Dubreuil from the Université de Montréal. Amy Van Allen, Mark Cristal and Pat Nietfield welcomed us to the NMAI. Tim Powell and Brian Carpenter accompanied us during our research at the APS, and William Wierzbowski led the visit to the storage spaces of the UPenn Museum.