Collectors & Collections
Students in the spring 2003 Introduction to Collections Management course researched significant figures in the history of the Logan Museum of Anthropology to make them known to a wider audience. Working with correspondence, field notes, accession information, and in one case personal communication, students compiled biographical and contextual information to augment the Museum's files. Students learned that the culture of a museum itself can be as interesting and complex as the cultures curated within its walls.
Nicolette B. Meister
Adjunct Assistant Professor, Museum Studies, and Curator of Collections, Logan Museum of Anthropology
Click on the following names for biographical and collection information:
Frank Granger Logan (1851-1937) – Trustee of Beloit College and founder of Logan Museum of Anthropology.
Horatio Nelson Rust (1826-1906) – Collector of Native American and South American ethnographic and archaeological material; founding collection of the Logan Museum.
George Lucius Collie (1857-1954) – Class of 1881; Logan Museum curator; helped established Anthropology Department at Beloit College; led field expeditions to Europe and North Africa.
Roy Chapman Andrews (1884-1960) – Class of 1906; led expeditions to the Gobi Desert.
Alonzo Pond (1894-1986) – Class of 1918; Logan Museum assistant curator; led field expeditions to North Africa.
Paul H. Nesbitt (1904-1985) – Class of 1926; Anthropology faculty member and Logan Museum curator; led field expeditions to the American Southwest.
Andrew Hunter Whiteford (1913-2006) – Class of 1937; Anthropology faculty member and director of the Logan Museum; led field expeditions to South America and Mexico.
Alfred W. Bowers (1901-1990) – Anthropology researcher; led field expeditions to the Dakotas; Mandan, Hidatsa, and Arikara archaeology and ethnology.
Albert Green Heath (1888-1953) – Collected Native American ethnographic material; collection purchased by the Logan Museum in 1956.
Helen-Margaret Greene (1901-1986) – Donated collection of Southwestern ethnographic material to the Logan Museum in the 1960s.
Harley Harris Bartlett (1886-1960) – Collected ethnographic material from Indonesia, Taiwan, and Philippine Islands.
Few people had as much influence on the Logan Museum as Frank Granger Logan. Born in New York State, the son of a farmer and school teacher, Logan moved Chicago in 1870 and later established F.G. Logan & Company, one of the country's foremost businesses in securities and grain. After his retirement in 1901, he and his wife Josephine Hancock became full-time philanthropists, supporting the Chicago Art Institute, Chicago Civic Opera, and Beloit College.
Frank Logan's relationship with Beloit College began in 1893 when he was appointed a Trustee of the College. The same year, Logan donated the Horatio Nelson Rust Collection of around 3,000 archaeological and ethnographic items, which were formally accepted by the College in 1894, founding the Logan Museum. Logan continued to donate many significant collections including the Perkins and Elkey collections of archaeological items donated in 1904 and 1905 respectively. In addition, Logan financed five archaeological expeditions to Europe and Africa to obtain Paleolithic and Neolithic specimens, and numerous archaeological expeditions to the American Southwest and Northern Great Plains. By 1929, Logan had donated to the Logan Museum $325,000 in cash and stocks and $150,000 in collection items.
Frank Logan also had a significant impact on the establishment of the Department of Anthropology at Beloit College in 1923. He championed courses in anthropology, archaeology, and human evolution, and insisted on the educational focus of the Museum. The Logan legacy lives on not only in name, but in the Museum's mission and through the Beloit College Museum Studies program and Anthropology department.
Researched by Katie Schuelke `04 (Anthropology and Museum Studies)
A native of Amherst, Massachusetts, Horatio Nelson Rust was a lifelong antiquarian and amateur archaeologist. He began collecting archaeological and ethnographic items as a traveling salesman on the East Coast. He accepted artifacts for trade or payment and he soon took contracts for the sale or collection of artifacts from institutions in the East including the Peabody Museum and Smithsonian Institution. During the Civil War he served as a medical volunteer and became involved in anti-slavery, benevolent, and intellectual societies. Rust moved to California in the 1880s where he served as a United States Indian Agent.
Rust sold portions of his collection at various times to several museums. In 1892, he sold around 3,000 artifacts to Frank Granger Logan for $15,000. Logan secured a job for Rust at the World's Columbian Exposition of 1893 in Chicago. There, Rust designed several exhibitions using the Logan-Rust Collection that focused on the "evolution of domestic arts." The Collection received an award for the best archaeological exhibit. The Logan-Rust Collection was formally accepted by the College in 1894 with the promise that "the museum doors will be thrown open to the student body."
The collection was the founding collection of the Logan Museum of Anthropology and helped to establish Beloit College as a center for undergraduate teaching and research in anthropology.
Research by Matthew Schauer `05 (History and Museum Studies)
George Collie was nearly synonymous with the Logan Museum for five decades. An 1881 graduate of Beloit College, he served as principal of Delavan High School in southeastern Wisconsin for four years. After resigning in 1889, he studied at Harvard University, where he received his Ph.D. in geology in 1892. Collie returned to Beloit that year as a professor of geology and soon became the first curator of the newly established Logan Museum. He served as dean of the College, acting president on two occasions, and, upon the departure of Ira Buell in 1917, director of the Logan Museum.
Collie developed a strong working relationship with Frank Logan, obtaining large gifts throughout the period of the Logan family's association with the College. With Logan's assistance and cooperation, Collie expanded the scope of collections and exhibits to include material from prehistoric peoples worldwide, complementing the Native American focus of the earliest accessions. In the 1920s, Collie and his student (and assistant curator) Alonzo Pond'18 negotiated complex political terrain in France while excavating and purchasing over 21,000 Paleolithic artifacts with Logan's enthusiastic support.
George Collie's initiative and his carefully cultivated relationship with Frank Logan helped him to develop the Logan Museum into a true teaching museum, solidifying its international reputation for excellent collections, facilitating Museum-based research around the world, and establishing Beloit College's renowned Department of Anthropology. Collie handed over the anthropology museum and department to his successor Paul Nesbitt in 1930-31.
Researched by Mercedes Asp `05 (Classical Philology and Museum Studies)
The city of Beloit's most famous native son and Beloit College's most widely known and celebrated graduate, Roy Chapman Andrews was the 20th century's prototypical explorer—a bold, dashing figure who braved bandits, sandstorms, shipwrecks, and other brushes with death around the world. Most notably, Andrews led the American Museum of Natural History's Central Asiatic Expeditions into the Gobi of Mongolia and China, recovering thousands of fossils including the first nests of dinosaur eggs.
Andrews graduated from Beloit College in 1906 and headed immediately for the American Museum of Natural History. Beginning his career by cleaning floors, he quickly worked his way up to become a curator and, by 1935, the museum's director. He conducted research on zoology and paleontology, but his greatest skills were as an organizer and promoter of multidisciplinary expeditions. He excited crowds about his explorations via mass-media presentations, and he obtained significant support for his work through direct appeals to New York's social elite. Books and magazine articles—including a 1923 Time Magazine cover story — widened his appeal.
Andrews hired Logan Museum assistant curator Alonzo Pond'18 as archaeologist for his 1928 Gobi expedition. The Logan Museum houses some of the 1928 collections, as well as some material from the team's 1925 archaeological studies, but most artifacts are housed with the rest of the Central Asiatic Expedition's collections at the American Museum of Natural History. Andrews retired from the American Museum in 1941. He is buried in Oakwood Cemetery on Beloit's east side. Andrews' life is the subject of many books, including Alonzo Pond's Andrews: Gobi Explorer (1972) and Dragon Bones and Dinosaur Eggs by Ann Bausum`79. The Beloit-based Roy Chapman Andrews Society promotes Andrews' legacy and honors today's explorers for outstanding achievements in scientific discovery.
Researched by Alexandra Trumbull `04 (Anthropology, Modern Languages, and Museum Studies)
Paul Nesbitt'26 graduated from Beloit College with a degree in economics, but his principal interests were in anthropology. His mentor George Collie'1881 helped arrange for him to excavate at Seeberger Cave in eastern Iowa in 1926. His Beloit connection remained strong, as he excavated with the Logan Museum team at the French Paleolithic site of La Ruth (1927), which he wrote up as his Masters thesis in anthropology at the University of Chicago (1928). Groomed to be Collie's replacement, Nesbitt returned to Beloit as anthropology professor and Logan Museum curator, positions he held until 1945.
Nesbitt directed eight seasons of Beloit College field school excavations at archaeological sites in New Mexico between 1929 and 1939. This work not only provided material for his Ph.D. dissertation (accepted by the University of Chicago and published by the Logan Museum in 1938) but also trained several students who went on to distinguished careers in anthropology (John Bennett, Don Lehmer, Bud Whiteford, Chandler Rowe, Hale Smith). Nesbitt permitted women students on his field schools from 1935 onward. He also conducted occasional excavations of the Beloit College mounds. The Southwestern collections form a large segment of the Logan Museum's holdings and are frequently accessed for research and teaching.
Leaving Beloit for U.S. Army Air Force training in desert warfare research, Nesbitt became director of the Museo Nacional de Arqueologia y Anthropologia in Guatemala (1945-1948) and, subsequently, director of the Arctic, Desert, and Tropic Information Center (where he hired his old Logan Museum colleague Alonzo Pond'18) and professor of anthropology at the Air University, Maxwell Air Force Base, Alabama. In 1967 he became chairman and professor of anthropology at the University of Alabama. He retired in 1974. By then, his interests had expanded to include a wide range of ethnological topics and he had conducted field work around the world. Nesbitt wrote two popular books with Alonzo Pond, The Survival Book (1959) and A Pilot's Survival Manual (1978).
Researched by Marin Bey `05 (Anthropology and Museum Studies)
Alonzo Pond was admitted to Beloit College with the Class of 1918, graduating in 1920 after spending two years with the French and American armies in World War I. After graduation, he returned to France to study prehistory at the American School in Europe at the University of Paris and then enrolled in graduate school in anthropology at the University of Chicago. In 1924, George Collie hired Pond to be assistant curator of the Logan Museum, with the principal task of building the Museum's collections of Paleolithic material from Europe and Africa.
Liberally funded by Logan and enthusiastically supported by Collie, Pond acquired significant archaeological collections from French excavators and landowners. Pond's major field work for the Logan Museum from 1925 through 1930 focused on northeastern Algeria. There, he led surveys and excavations of dozens of prehistoric sites, particularly "escargotieres" (snail shell middens) of the Capsian culture. Students from Beloit College and from the universities of Wisconsin and Minnesota worked under his direction and recovered tens of thousands of artifacts. Pond's field methods were state-of-the-art; he was a particularly astute observer and recorder of archaeological stratigraphy. The Logan Museum's French and North African collections are regularly used teaching and research resources for Beloit College staff and students and attract researchers from around the world.
The Great Depression forced the College to release Pond in 1931. He then worked as an archaeologist and project supervisor for the National Park Service, the Civilian Conservation Corps, and Cave of the Mounds at Blue Mounds, Wisconsin, while maintaining a busy schedule of lecturing, writing, and broadcasting about his overseas expeditions. Pond reunited with Beloiter Paul Nesbitt from 1949 through 1958 as a desert survival expert at Nesbitt's Arctic, Desert, and Tropic Information Center at Maxwell Air Force Base, Alabama. He then moved to northern Wisconsin, where he developed resort attractions and continued to write and publish. His archives, films, and other records are housed at the Logan Museum, the Wisconsin Historical Society, and the Smithsonian Institution's National Anthropological Archives.
Researched by Nathaniel Howe `05 (History and Museum Studies)
Andrew Whiteford and Moreau Maxwell examining artifacts in the Logan Museum, 1947.
Andrew "Bud" Whiteford enhanced Beloit College's reputation for excellence in teaching undergraduate anthropology. A 1937 anthropology graduate of Beloit College, Whiteford eventually returned to the College in 1943 as Curator of the Logan Museum and Professor of Anthropology and later as Director of the Logan Museum. While Director of the Logan Museum, Whiteford facilitated the acquisition of much important material, including the significant Albert Green Heath collection of Native American art and artifacts.
Whiteford conducted archaeological fieldwork in the American Southwest, Southeast, Midwest, and conducted ethnographic studies and collecting expeditions in Colombia, Mexico, Ecuador, Bolivia, and Peru. He was an advocate for undergraduate archaeological and ethnographic field work opportunities, hands-on training in museum anthropology, and the importance of using museums to teach anthropology.
After retiring from Beloit College in 1974, Whiteford held visiting professorships at Michigan State University and the University of New Mexico, and research curatorships at the School of American Research, Wheelright Museum of the American Indian, and the State Historical Society of Wisconsin. In addition to mentoring countless students who have gone on to accomplished careers in anthropology, three of Whiteford's four children are professional anthropologists.
Researched by Emily Hildebrandt `04 (Anthropology, History, and Museum Studies)
Alfred W. Bowers conducted archaeological, ethnographic, and ethnohistoric research concerning Native peoples of North America. A 1928 graduate of Beloit College, he led Logan Museum field expeditions in North and South Dakota in 1929, 1930, and 1931. After receiving his Ph.D. from the University of Chicago, he taught anthropology at the University of Idaho (1949-1967) and Stanislaus State College (1967-1971). Bowers focused his research on the Northern Great Plains, especially the Mandan, Hidatsa, and Arikara Indians—the Three Affiliated Tribes—of the Fort Berthold Reservation in North Dakota. His books on the social and ceremonial organization of the Mandan (1950) and Hidatsa (1965) Indians are standard, authoritative sources that were reprinted in the 1990s.
The Logan Museum houses over 13,000 objects from Bowers' 1929-1931 excavations and surface collections at Mandan, Arikara, and earlier Plains Village archaeological sites. The Museum also contains a small amount of ethnographic material collected by Bowers. Manuscripts and records relating to the field work are on file at the Logan Museum. Parts of the Bowers archaeological collection also are housed at Indiana University and the Illinois State Museum. Together, the Bowers collections form an important body of original material on the cultures and history of the Native people of the northern Great Plains, especially the Three Affiliated Tribes.
Researched by Lisa Howe `05 (Classical Civilizations and Museum Studies)
Albert Green Heath was born in 1888 in Chicago, Illinois. He attended Williams College and then the University of Chicago, graduating in 1912. Heath became an avid collector and dealer of Native American objects at an early age, developing an impressive collection which he called the Museum of Amerind Arts or the Museum of American Indian Art. Heath traveled extensively throughout North America buying, trading, and selling Native American objects. His summer home in Harbor Springs, Michigan afforded him the opportunity to develop relationships with the local Odawa population. An amateur anthropologist, Heath recorded detailed information on the former owners and provenance of items in his collection.
Heath was very interested in preserving his collection for entertainment and education purposes. When he died in 1953, his cousin Helen Friedmann, Beloit class of 1918, pushed for the collection to go to Beloit College. In 1955, despite interest from other museums 2,635 objects were sold to the Logan Museum of Anthropology for $9,000. In order to recoup the acquisition expense, the Logan Museum sold "duplicate" items, giving museums first priority. The sale was later opened to private collectors and the public. Of the full collection of 2,635 objects, 1,699 were sold and 936 became part of the Logan Museum's permanent collection.
The collection contains objects from various Native American tribes and from peoples in other parts of the world including Oceania, Mesopotamia, and Asia. In 1992, Beloit College published an overview, The Albert Green Heath Collection, by Daniel W Eck. The publication is available for purchase for $3.00 in the Museums Gift Shop or by mail.
Researched by Nikki Burt `04 (Anthropology and Museum Studies)
Helen-Margaret Greene was born in New York City in 1901. She traveled throughout the United States, Europe, and North Africa and moved to Taos, New Mexico in 1951. She developed a deep interest in Native American culture and spent over three years living among the Hopi composing a Hopi-English, English-Hopi dictionary. Greene became an avid collector of Hopi textiles, basketry, katsinas, jewelry, and other Puebloan art in the 1960s. During this time there was a resurgence of interest in anything American Indian, especially arts and crafts, and many collectors, including Helen-Margaret Greene, bought directly from Native artists.
Greene wanted her collection to be preserved in a small museum outside of the Southwest. She wanted to provide students outside the Southwest the opportunity to study Southwestern Native American material culture. At the recommendation of her friend Alice Marriott, a well known ethnologist, Greene was appointed a Research Associate of the Logan Museum in 1961. She donated her collection of 305 ethnographic objects from the Hopi, Zuni, Acoma, Laguna, San Ildefonso Pueblos, as well as Navajo, Apache, Havasupai, and Tohono O'odham items, to the Logan Museum throughout the 1960s. Her notes and manuscripts on Hopi language and culture are housed at the Harold S. Colton Memorial Library, Museum of Northern Arizona.
Researched by Stacy Pickruhn `03 (Anthropology and Museum Studies)
Herbert Spencer Zim and Sonia Bleeker Zim were accomplished authors: Herbert was well known for his scientific books for children and Sonia for her books on anthropology for young adults. Their collection of nearly 1,000 ethnographic and archaeological artifacts acquired during their world-wide travels was donated to the Logan Museum between 1961 and 1976.
Herbert attended Columbia University, where he received B.A., M.A., and Ph.D degrees. He was a professor of Science Education at the University of Illinois at Urbana and wrote or edited more than 100 science books. In 1945 he originated the highly successful Golden Guides series, serving as its editor-in-chief for more than twenty years. One of these guides, North American Indian Arts (1970), was written by Andrew Hunter Whiteford, former Director of the Logan Museum, and illustrated by Owen Vernon Shaffer, former Beloit College Art Department faculty member and Director of the Wright Art Center. This book contains illustrations of many artifacts in the Logan Museum, has been in print for over 30 years and is available for purchase in the Gift Shop.
Sonia Bleeker did graduate work in anthropology at Columbia University where she studied under Franz Boas. Her interest in anthropology led her and Herbert all over the world where they did research for the anthropology books she wrote for young adults about Native Americans, pre-Columbian cultures, and various African tribes.
The Herbert Spencer Zim Papers are housed at the Elmer L. Anderson Library in the Children's Literature Research Collection at the University of Minnesota. Archives on Herbert Zim and Sonia Bleeker Zim are also part of the de Grummond Children's Literature Collection at the University of Southern Mississippi.
Researched by Kate Lindenmeyer `04 (Anthropology and Museum Studies)
In 1961 Hazel Bartlett donated over 400 ethnographic objects from Indonesia, Tibet, Malaysia, and the Philippines to the Logan Museum of Anthropology. The material was collected by Ms. Bartlett's brother, Harley Harris Bartlett, who was a professor of botany and director of the Botanical Gardens at the University of Michigan.
Harley Bartlett traveled around the world during the first half of the 20th century collecting vast botanical collections for the University of Michigan, the U.S. government, and major American companies and agencies, such as the United States Rubber Company. In 1918 Bartlett took his first research trip to Sumatra, an island in Indonesia, where he became acquainted with the indigenous Batak people. He studied their language and collected ethnographic materials as well as plant specimens. He wrote numerous articles about the language and culture of the Batak people.
The rare Batak manuscripts collected by Bartlett are considered by scholars the most important part of his collection. Researchers from around the world have visited the Logan Museum to study and translate the manuscripts, which have been published nationally and internationally.
The Harley Harris Bartlett Archives are housed at the Bentley Historical Library, University of Michigan.
Researched by Stephanie Haney `05 (Art History and Museum Studies)