Mapping Indiana Territory: Exploring Indigenous and Western Representations

The exhibit is free and open to the public.

As part of the Indiana University 2017 Themester, “Diversity • Difference • Otherness,” the Glenn A. Black Laboratory of Archaeology is proud to open two new exhibits featuring historic 19th century maps of Indiana and the greater Ohio River Valley.

The GBL’s James H. Kellar Library contains the Great Lakes and Ohio Valley Ethnohistory (GLOVE) Collection, an assemblage of documents collected for the Indian Claims Commission, including 19th century maps depicting Native American and EuroAmerican settlement in the midcontinent. A  museum exhibit in the lobby of the GBL is a collaboration with Native historians, scholars, and descendants of Native American peoples that once lived in Indiana. The exhibit juxtaposes images of examples of EuroAmerican made maps and images of Indigenous representations of the Indiana and Ohio Valley landscapes and problematize favoring western world views and ways of knowing.

On Friday, October 6th, a panel of tribal scholars, historians, and anthropologists discussed different perspectives on how “otherness” and sovereign identities of tribes for whom Indiana Territory is considered homeland have been constructed, negotiated, and deconstructed in the wake of colonial expansion.

Exploring Angel Mounds IQ Table

Exploring Angel Mounds is an interactive exhibit highlighting the Angel Mounds State Historic Site located in Evansville, IN and was a collaborative effort between the GBL and IU’s Advanced Visualization Lab (AVL). The exhibit consists of a high-resolution, multi-touch, tabletop display showing a map of the Angel Mounds site. By selecting different icons scattered across the site, visitors can view photographs, videos, and information on themes such as agriculture, protection and daily life as experienced by the Mississippian inhabitants of Angel Mounds.

The exhibit is installed in the Glenn Black Lab (GBL) on the IU Bloomington campus and is free/open to the public.

Past Exhibits

Glenn Black Memorabilia

 Recently donated memorabilia from Glenn Black's niece: includes his honoary degree from Wabash College, pictures, service cards, and trowel. This exhibit was on display Spring 2016-Summer 2018.

Containing Knowledge: Ceramics at the Glenn Black Lab

Exploring pottery as containers in both literal and metaphorical ways, this exhibit features a selection of whole pots as well as objects used to make and decorate ceramics. Technology, decoration, use, and cosmology are all touched on through the use of beautiful images and pieces.

A special section of the exhibit looks at the work of local archaeology students and their efforts to temper clay and build and fire pots in the ways that Mississippian people might have. This exhibit closed in Summer 2018.

The Beauty of Shawnee Pottery

Second Chief Ben Barnes of the Shawnee Tribe of Oklahoma has been leading an effort to rediscover and reclaim the beauty of traditional Shawnee Pottery. This collaboration with archaeologists and scholars has sought to learn more about ancient ceramic technologies that were disrupted by European colonization. From this knowledge, Barnes and other tribal members are working to recreate their ancestral arts.The pottery that has resulted from these efforts was on display in the Glenn Black Laboratory. This exhibit closed Summer of 2017.

Archaeologists @Work

As part of the Indiana University Themester “@Work: The Nature of Labor on a Changing Planet,” and in celebration of its 50th anniversary as an IU research center (1965-2015),The Glenn A. Black Laboratory of Archaeology is proud to open their new exhibit honoring the work conducted by Works Progress Administration crews at Angel Mounds State Historic Site in Evansville, Indiana. From 1939 to 1942, nearly 300 individuals were employed as archaeological surveyors, excavators, and laboratory technicians. This exhibit honors their contributions to Indiana archaeology, and reflects on advances made in the discipline over the last 75 years.

This exhibit was funded by Themester 2015, "@Work: The Nature of Labor on a Changing Planet,"an initiative of the College of Arts and Sciences.

Practicing our Craft: Archaeologists as Artists

The artist archaeologists in this unique exhibit were asked to think about their archaeological photographs as works of art in their own right. Please peruse the collection of photos and accompanying descriptions to find out a little more about archaeology as a discipline and archaeologists as creators. The collection of photographs is both aesthetically pleasing and deeply personal."

Picturing Archaeology

Described in their words and illustrated by their images, the research and fieldwork of 13 Indiana University archaeologists was presented in this exhibit in the Mentoria Headdy Exhibit Hall. The exhibit closed in January of 2014.

Ancient Stone Carving in the American Midwest

Ancient people of the Midwest have a 12,000 year history of shaping stone. See examples of some of the earliest stone artifacts from the region along with an array of utilitarian and ceremonial pieces from the collections of the Glenn A. Black Laboratory of Archaeology. Limestone figures prominently among the many stone types crafted in the past. The exhibit closed in September of 2014.