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Paleoethnobotany

Associate Curator of Malacology, Kandi Hollenbach
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The Gary D. Crites Paleoethnobotany Laboratory houses archaeologically recovered plant remains and/or data from 112 sites representing 10 states and 9,000 years.

A separate collection of over 100,000 maize elements spans the past 2,000 years. The lab also houses quaternary plant microfossils, macrofossils, and a modern comparative seed and fruit collection numbering more than 1,850 species.

Collections include:

  • Archaeological Fruit and Seed Collection
  • Bean Collection
  • Maize Collection
  • Pollen Collection
  • Modern Comparative Fruit and Seed Collection
  • Herbarium Voucher Specimen Collection

The paleoethnobotany collections are not currently online, so please contact Associate Curator Kandi Hollenbach for additional information about the specimens included.

Researching the Collections

Researchers of all stripes are encouraged to use the Gary D. Crites Paleoethnobotany Laboratory collections in their research. Learn more about conducting research within the Paleoethnobotany Collections.

Using Collections in Your University Coursework

We welcome professors to contact the museum about using the Paleoethnobotany Collections for teaching and learning opportunities in our Object Study Room or the galleries.

Collection Loans

The Gary D. Crites Paleoethnobotany Laboratory makes its extensive collections available to researchers for both nondestructive and destructive analyses through its loan process. Loans of McClung Museum objects are only made to museums, universities, or other organizations with the director’s approval. Learn more about Loan Requests.

Donating

The museum occasionally accepts donations of specimens that relate to the museum’s mission and complement existing collections. Learn more at Donating Objects.

Sample Identification

Associate Curator Kandi Hollenbach has over 20 years of experience analyzing macrobotanical remains from archaeological sites across the eastern United States, spanning from the Paleoindian through Historic periods. For analysis of flotation samples, please contact Kandi Hollenbach directly.

Student and Volunteer Opportunities

We greatly value volunteers of all ages and abilities. Volunteer opportunities include assisting with accession of new specimens in the collections, analysis of existing collections, and aid with the experimental garden at UT Gardens and the UT Grow Lab, which are listed on our website. Learn more about Working at the Museum.

Stay tuned for future online resources, including searchable tables of the collections; reports of plant remains from sites in the Eastern Woodlands of North America; and plant data from sites in the eastern United States.

Paleoethnobotany Publications