Text and Image Collections

The Haffenreffer Museum Research Collections Center's photographic archive, in addition to collection record shots, contains photographs from the founder's archives, the Spinden collection of images of Central and South America, and field photographs that accompanied collections. The Center library has some 10,000 volumes. Highlights of the collection include the following:

  • Herbert Spinden Photographic Archive, with over 20,000 images and documents related to Central American archaeology and ethnography from the early 20th century, including many images of important archaeological sites that have since been altered or destroyed.
  • The Kensinger Collection has over 5000 photographs and related field notes and texts from Anthropologist Ken Kensingers research with the Cashinahua of Peru from 1960 - 1996
  • The Conti Collection has over 3000 photographs dating from the late 1950s through the early 1970s taken by Rhode Island photographer Gino Conti, primarily on the Hopi, Apache and Navaho reservations, and also in Mexico.
  • Photographs of Southwest prehistoric petroglyphs taken by Salvatore Mancini, many of which are published by the Museum in the book Terra Incognita.
  • Lithographs, serigraphs and two dimensional artwork by and about the Inuit, the Ainu, Plains Indians and many others.

While the Museum limits the number of objects on display at any one time, the collections are available to qualified researchers. The Museum has nearly completed entering the catalogue onto a computerized data base, allowing for easy search and reporting on the collection. For research access, please contact Kevin Smith at (401) 863-5700.