Herbert Spinden

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Herbert J. Spinden from the archive of the American Museum of Natural History archeology division.

Herbert Joseph Spinden (1879–1967) was an American anthropologist, archeologist and art historian who specialized in the study of Native American cultures of the US and Mesoamerica. In 1936 he was president of the American Anthropological Association. He was born in Huron, South Dakota. He obtained his Ph.D. in 1909 at Harvard where he specialized in Maya art under the direction of Alfred Tozzer, he then worked American Museum of Natural History where he undertook archeological studies in Mexico and Central America. While working as an archeologist in Central America he and Sylvanus G. Morley were among the American scientists gathering intelligence for the US Army.[1] He then curated the collection of the Peabody Museum at Harvard, before taking museum positions in Brooklyn and Buffalo.[2] He also did ethnographic studies among the Nez Percé. In 1919 he published a study of Maya calendrics giving a correlation between the Maya calendar and the gregorian calendar - a correlation which was nonetheless not widely accepted.[3]


  1. ^ Browman, D. (2011). Spying by American Archaeologists in World War I. Bulletin of the History of Archaeology, 21(2).
  2. ^ http://www.amnh.org/our-research/anthropology/collections/collections-history/meso-american-archaeology/herbert-joseph-spinden/
  3. ^ Ruz Lhuillier, Alberto. "Herbert Joseph Spinden." Estudios de Cultura Maya 8.