Scanning Caddo NAGPRA Vessels in the Turner Collection

Next week we begin the process of collecting 3D scans of Caddo NAGPRA (Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act) vessels from the Turner Collection in the Anthropology and Archaeology Laboratory. This project is funded by the National Center for Preservation Technology and Training (NCPTT), and is representative of our initial attempt to explore inter-site variation in Caddo vessel shape using 3D geometric morphometrics. To learn more about our approach to 3D morphometrics, click on geometric morphometrics under popular search terms, visit the project page here, and download our most recent article here.

Caddo Vessels

We would like to thank Robert Cast, the Tribal Historic Preservation Officer of the Caddo Nation of Oklahoma and Dr. George Avery, Director of the Anthropology and Archaeology Laboratory, for access to this collection. Three-dimensional scanning of the Turner Collection vessels follows a documentation effort by Dr. Timothy K. Perttula, Mark Walters and Bo Nelson, and those data produced by both endeavors will be synthesized and made available through CRHR:ARCHAEOLOGY.

O NAGPRA 2012.1.385
O NAGPRA 2012.1.385 from the Turner Collection
Animation courtesy of the Virtual Curation Laboratory
To learn more about this vessel, click here.

Within the next month, our digital repository will undergo a significant upgrade as we make the transition from ContentDM to DSpace. This will allow for greater freedom with regard to website/entry design, and will continue to allow us to aggregate all of our data in one location (where everything can be downloaded) without the aid of a third-party platform. None of this would have been possible without the aid of the incredible faculty and staff at the Center for Digital Scholarship, all of whom have worked very hard to make this a reality.

This means that we will not be adding new entries to the repository for the next month; however, everything that is currently posted will remain accessible. You can also view our 3D scans and publications on ScholarWorks; our institutional repository. We thank you for your patience during this upgrade, and look forward to unveiling the revised digital repository in the very near future.

O NAGPRA 2012.1.383
O NAGPRA 2012.1.383 from the Turner Collection
Animation courtesy of the Virtual Curation Laboratory
To learn more about this vessel, click here.

All too often preservation/documentation projects produce fun and interactive displays of their deliverables, but they miss out on potential analytical gains by not pushing further. This project provides an example of one avenue of non-invasive/non-destructive research that produces—as a byproduct—useful 3D datasets that can be employed within future research and comparative endeavors.

We look forward to having you along for the various phases of this project; from 3D scanning and post-processing to analysis and beyond.


Written by zselden

Selden (PhD, Texas A&M University, 2013) is a husband, father, US Marine Corps veteran, cyclist, kayaker, backpacker, hiker, climber, fisherman and general all-around outdoor enthusiast. His research is focused at the confluence of archaeological methods and digital technology, and he is particularly interested in the application of 3D technologies to archaeological problems, geometric morphometrics, network analyses, predictive modeling, archaeological theory, and archaeological science.