William Meacham

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William Meacham is an American archaeologist living and working in Hong Kong since 1970. Meacham has written several books on archaeology in southern China.[1]

In 1977 he published an article on South China archaeology in the journal Current Anthropology,[2] opposing the then general consensus that innovations spread south from the Central Plains of North China. This "nuclear area hypothesis" was promoted by Kwang-chih Chang, the prominent doyen of ancient China archaeology. In 2000, in a preface to his own Festschrift, Chang acknowledged: "On the concept of 'Regional Cultures,' I was very much a late-comer. Judith Treistman (1972) and William Meacham (1977) were both pioneers on this question."[3]

Meacham has written several papers[4] and a book[5] on the restoration of the Shroud of Turin in 2002, where Meacham is questioning the restoration methods used by the Catholic Church.

He recently conducted a successful search to locate a Confederate burial ground of 227 soldiers in Hopkinsville, Kentucky.[6] .[7] In researching the epidemic that killed these soldiers encamped at Hopkinsville in 1861, Meacham developed a hypothesis that the disease, at the time called "Black Measles", was influenza. He published a lengthy article on the subject.[8]


  1. ^ from a presentation of Meacham when presenting an article at the Centre for the Humanities and Medicine at The University of Hong Kong
  2. ^ Continuity and local evolution in the Neolithic of South China: a non-nuclear approach. Current Anthropology. by William Meacham. 1977 18(3): 419-440
  3. ^ Reflections on Chinese Archaeology in the Second Half of the Twentieth Century. Journal of East Asian Archaeology. by Kwang-Chih Chang. 2001 3(1):5-19
  4. ^ William Meacham, "The Authentication of the Turin Shroud, An Issue in Archeological Epistemology", Current Anthropology, 1983 24(3): 283-311
  5. ^ William Meacham, "The Rape of the Turin Shroud", 2005, ISBN 1-4116-5769-1
  6. ^ initial report in the Washington Times
  7. ^ latest report by Nashville TV station
  8. ^ William Meacham, Was measles a powerful killer, as widely believed, during the Civil War? Journal of Civil War Medicine 17, 4, 2013

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