White, Marian E. (Marian Emily), 1921-1975

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Marian E. White dedicated her career to western New York archaeology during her sixteen years of service at University at Buffalo. She graduated in 1942 from Cornell University with a bachelor's degree. Shortly after graduation she joined the Army Air Force, working from 1944 to 1945 as an IBM Tabulator Machine Operator. Upon her return to civilian life, she held a position as a Science Guide at the Buffalo Museum of Science until 1952. White became the first woman to graduate from the University of Michigan with a doctorate in Anthropology in 1956. After receiving her Ph.D., White worked for the next two years at the Rochester Museum of Arts and Sciences. In 1959 she became a Research Associate in Archaeology at UB while simultaneously holding the position of Assistant Curator of Anthropology at the Buffalo Museum of Science. She also served as the Assistant Curator of Archaeology at the Buffalo and Erie County Historical Society. In 1968, White was made full Professor in the Department of Anthropology, a position she held until her death on October 31, 1975. White's archaeological fieldwork took her to Native American sites in New York, Illinois, and Canada. Her growing interest in highway salvage, protecting important Native American archaeological sites from highway development, led her to a variety of administrative honors and positions. In 1969, she established the Highway Salvage program at UB to protect lands from highway and industrial development. Her involvement in Native American issues did not end with her professional work; she often volunteered for the same Native American communities who had claims to the sites on which she worked. The Auburn Historical Society awarded White the Cornplanters Medal for her work with the Iroquois. Marian White was an important part of efforts to preserve the local and regional history. She served as the first President of the New York Archaeological Council from 1972 to 1974. She also served as the Director of the Niagara Frontier Archaeological Project. Governor Nelson A. Rockefeller appointed her to the New York State Board on Historic Preservation. During her lifetime, she envisioned an anthropological research museum that would house the artifacts of North American archaeology. In 1979, the Marian E. White Anthropology Museum was established in association with the Anthropology Library. She also helped organize the University at Buffalo Archaeological Survey which trains qualified Cultural Resource Management (CRM) professionals and provides CRM services to Western New York. The Survey's mission praises White as a "a staunch proponent and pioneer of historic preservation and CRM archaeology. The Survey continues as a legacy to her recognition of the need for qualified local professionals with regional interests in public archaeology and archaeological site protection."

From the description of Marian E. White papers, 1934-1975. (SUNY at Buffalo). WorldCat record id: 70224582

Archival Resources
Role Title Holding Repository
creatorOf White, Marian E. (Marian Emily), 1921-1975. Marian E. White papers, 1934-1975. SUNY at Buffalo, University at Buffalo
referencedIn Floyd Glenn Lounsbury papers, ca. 1935-1998, Circa 1935-1998 American Philosophical Society
referencedIn Fenton, William Nelson. William N. Fenton Papers. 1933-2001. American Philosophical Society Library
referencedIn Tooker, Elisabeth, 1927-. Papers, 1945-1994. American Philosophical Society Library
referencedIn Fenton, William Nelson. William N. Fenton Papers. 1933-2000. American Philosophical Society
Role Title Holding Repository
Relation Name
associatedWith American Anthropological Association. corporateBody
associatedWith Canadian Archaeological Association. corporateBody
associatedWith Eastern States Archeological Federation (U.S.) corporateBody
associatedWith Fenton, William N. (William Nelson), 1908-2005 person
associatedWith Haas, Mary R., (Mary Rosamond), 1910-1996 person
associatedWith Jack, Nellie person
associatedWith Lounsbury, Floyd Glenn person
associatedWith New York State Archeological Association. corporateBody
associatedWith Northeastern Anthropological Association. corporateBody
associatedWith Ontario Archaeological Society corporateBody
associatedWith Society for American Anthropology. corporateBody
associatedWith Society for American Archaeology. corporateBody
associatedWith Society for Pennsylvania Archaeology. corporateBody
associatedWith State University of New York at Buffalo corporateBody
associatedWith State University of New York at Buffalo. Dept. of Anthropology corporateBody
associatedWith Sturtevant, William C. person
associatedWith Swadesh, Morris, 1909-1967 person
associatedWith Tooker, Elisabeth, 1927- person
associatedWith University of Buffalo corporateBody
associatedWith University of Buffalo. Dept. of Anthropology corporateBody
associatedWith University of Michigan corporateBody
associatedWith Voegelin, C. F. (Charles Frederick), 1906-1986 person
Place Name Admin Code Country
New York (State)--Buffalo
United States
New York (State)
Indians of North America--Material culture
Iroquois Indians--Congresses
Anthropology--Field work
Indians of North America--Antiquities
Iroquois Indians--History
Iroquois Indians--Antiquities
Anthropology--Study and teaching
Salvage archaeology
Excavations (Archaeology)
Anthropology--Societies, etc
Anthropology teachers
Archaeology--Field work
Women college teachers
Anthropology--Outlines, syllabi, etc
Women anthropologists


Birth 1921

Death 1975


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