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University of Chicago Library

Guide to the University of Chicago Department of Anthropology Chiapas Project Records 1942-circa 1990s

© 2018 University of Chicago Library

Descriptive Summary

Title:

University of Chicago. Department of Anthropology. Chiapas Project. Records

Dates:

1942-circa 1990s

Size:

6 linear feet (10 boxes)

Repository:

Special Collections Research Center
University of Chicago Library
1100 East 57th Street
Chicago, Illinois 60637 U.S.A.

Abstract:

The Department of Anthropology Chiapas Project records document the University of Chicago Department of Anthropology’s research projects in the Mexican state of Chiapas in the late 1950s and early 1960s. The projects aimed to investigate the language, culture, environment, and history of local Maya communities. The first phase of research, known as the Man in Nature Project, ran from 1956-1959. The second phase, known as the Chiapas Project, began in 1960, and the final report was produced in 1964. The collection contains project applications and bibliographies; brochures, correspondence, and administrative documents related to project housing, personnel, finances, and equipment; notes; a small amount of research material; financial records; photographs and slide film depicting the project team, indigenous people, and field work locations; and bound copies of final project reports. The material ranges in date from 1942-circa 1990s, with the bulk dating from 1958-1962.

Information on Use

Access

The collection is open for research.

Citation

When quoting material from this collection, the preferred citation is: University of Chicago. Department of Anthropology. Chiapas Project. Records [Box #, Folder #], Special Collections Research Center, University of Chicago Library

Historical Note

In the late 1950s and early 1960s, the University of Chicago Department of Anthropology sponsored several grant-funded research projects in the southern Mexican state of Chiapas. The first, formally known as the Man in Nature Project, ran from 1956-1959 and was primarily funded by a grant from the National Science Foundation. It began as a two-year project with University of Chicago anthropologist Sol Tax as coordinator and was extended an additional year, for which Norman McQuown took over as coordinator. The project originally intended to make use of a multidisciplinary team to investigate land use, ecology, and agriculture among the Tzeltal and Tzotzil Maya people of Chiapas. According to the project report’s introduction, it aimed to put a “particular focus on the historical dimension and on the dynamics of relations between culture and environment.” However, the project evolved and investigators ultimately put less emphasis on “the ethnohistorical aspects” and more on using social anthropology and linguistics to investigate present-day Maya societies in Chiapas.

The second phase of the Department of Anthropology’s research in Chiapas was known as the Chiapas Project, and it built on the work of the Man in Nature Project. Work began in 1960 and the final report was produced in 1964. The project was led by University of Chicago anthropologists Norman McQuown and Julian Pitt-Rivers and was supported by two major grants and additional supplementary funding. The first grant, from the National Institute of Mental Health, supported work “to investigate the social organization, language, and values of the populations of the central highlands of Chiapas,” according to the project report. The second grant, from the National Science Foundation, proposed to make use of “archeology, documentary research, and historical linguistics” to investigate the origins and history of Chiapas’ Tzeltal and Tzotzil communities. In this phase, work of Chiapas Project team members remained more in line with their original project goals, and they ultimately produced numerous detailed linguistic and cultural studies of indigenous communities in Chiapas.

Scope Note

The Department of Anthropology Chiapas Project Records are organized into five series:

I. Administrative

II. Financial

III. Reports

IV. Audiovisual

V. Oversize

Series I, Administrative, contains grant applications and project bibliographies; brochures, correspondence, inventories, rental agreements, and other documents related to project housing, personnel, and equipment; notes; and a few miscellaneous research outlines, logs, instruction sheets and workbooks. The material ranges in date from 1954-circa 1990s, with the bulk dating from 1958-1962.

Series II, Financial, contains financial and budget records from the National Institute of Mental Health and National Science Foundation grants that provided funding for the University of Chicago’s work in Chiapas. It includes travel advance and expense vouchers, receipts, notes, correspondence related to financial matters, expense lists, ledgers, and budget statements. The material ranges in date from 1958-1983, with the bulk dating from 1958-1964.

Series III, Reports, contains bound volumes of the final reports on the Man in Nature Project and Chiapas Project as well as a roster of informants from both projects. The report on the Man in Nature Project is divided into three parts. The material ranges in date from 1959-1971.

Series IV, Audiovisual, contains photographs, negatives, and slide film that depict landscapes, indigenous people, and project staff in Mexico and Guatemala. The series ranges in date from 1942-1962, with some undated material.

Series V, Oversize, contains material that is too large to fit in standard legal-sized folders, such as ledgers and charts. It is all from the financial series and has been arranged in the same manner as that series, alphabetically. The material ranges in date from 1960-1963.

Related Resources

The following related resources are located in the Department of Special Collections:

http://www.lib.uchicago.edu/e/scrc/findingaids/topics.php

Norman A. McQuown. Papers [The McQuown Papers contain a significant amount of additional Chiapas Project material, so researchers interested in this topic should be sure to consult them as well.]

Department of Anthropology. Records

Sol Tax. Papers

Subject Headings

INVENTORY

Series I: Administrative

This series contains grant applications and project bibliographies; brochures, correspondence, inventories, rental agreements, and other documents related to project housing, personnel, and equipment; notes; and a few miscellaneous research outlines, logs, instruction sheets and workbooks. Much of the material appears to have been created by anthropologist Norman McQuown or Department of Anthropology staff member Norene G. Huntley. The material is arranged alphabetically and ranges in date from 1954-circa 1990s, with the bulk dating from 1958-1962.

Box 1   Folder 1

Applications to the National Institutes of Health, including “Tzeltal-Tzotzil Culture Change – A Sociolinguistic Controlled Comparison,” “Social and Linguistic Indices of Cultural Change,” and “Tzeltal-Tzotzil Sociolinguistic Data Processing,” 1959-1962 [includes related correspondence and project statements]

Box 1   Folder 2

Application to the National Science Foundation – “Highland Maya Ethnohistory – A Study in Documentary Evaluation,” copy 1, circa 1962

Box 1   Folder 3

Application to the National Science Foundation – “Highland Maya Ethnohistory – A Study in Documentary Evaluation,” copy 2 - stencils, circa 1962

Box 1   Folder 4

Bibliography of Chiapas project file, circa 1960s

Box 1   Folder 5

Bibliography, University of Chicago Chiapas Field Projects, 1956-1962, circa 1990s

Box 1   Folder 6

Casa Chicago / Chicago House (project housing and headquarters) – floorplan, correspondence (mostly Norman McQuown), equipment inventory, rental agreements, and miscellaneous documents, 1960-1962, undated

Box 1   Folder 7

Casa Chicago / Chicago House – informants’ work schedules, pay schedules, and assignments, undated

Box 1   Folder 8

Correspondence, mostly Norene Huntley and/or Norman McQuown regarding administrative, financial, and personnel matters, 1959-1963

Box 1   Folder 9

Equipment – Butoba and other tape recorders – correspondence and brochures, 1960-1962

Box 1   Folder 10

Equipment – tape and accessories, receipts and brochures, 1956-1962

Box 1   Folder 11

Equipment – vehicles, including license, Land Rover, and International Travel-All, 1957-1964

Box 1   Folder 12

Equipment – vehicles – Land Rover, 1956-1966

Box 1   Folder 13

Equipment – vehicles – International Travel-All, 1959-1962

Box 1   Folder 14

“Features of Spanish Intonation Patterns,” by J. Donald Bowen, outline with examples, 1954

Box 1   Folder 15

Informe del Segundo Seminario Chicago-Chiapas en San Cristóbal, 1960

Box 1   Folder 16

Madsen’s Photo Service, blank order form, undated

Box 1   Folder 17

“Microfilm collection – Items in the University of Chicago Project’s microfilm collection in Frans Blom’s Library,” circa 1960s

Box 1   Folder 18

Notebooks with budget and miscellaneous notes, circa 1958-1962, undated

Box 2   Folder 1

Notes – cards with notes on informants, field workers, students, and other contacts, undated

Box 2   Folder 2

Notes – miscellaneous, mostly Norman McQuown, 1961-1962, undated

Box 2   Folder 3

Project reports and instructions for coding and card punching, undated

Box 2   Folder 4

Project report table of contents and letter regarding printing service, 1962

Box 2   Folder 5

Research logs for Textos Tzeltales and Tzotziles, undated

Box 2   Folder 6

“Spoken Spanish,” Foreign Service Institute workbook, by Robert P. Stockwell et al., 1953 [1 of 3]

Box 2   Folder 7

“Spoken Spanish,” Foreign Service Institute workbook, by Robert P. Stockwell et al., 1953 [2 of 3]

Box 2   Folder 8

“Spoken Spanish,” Foreign Service Institute workbook, by Robert P. Stockwell et al., 1953 [3 of 3]

Box 2   Folder 9

Vocabulario Máximo/Medio/Mínimo, Weitlaner, undated

Series II: Financial

This series contains financial and budget records from the National Institute of Mental Health and National Science Foundation grants that provided funding for the University of Chicago’s work in Chiapas. It includes travel advance and expense vouchers, receipts, notes, correspondence related to financial matters, expense lists, ledgers, and budget statements. The material is arranged alphabetically and ranges in date from 1958-1983, with the bulk dating from 1958-1964.

Box 2   Folder 10

Budget – miscellaneous, including notes, receipts, and correspondence, including for National Science Foundation Chiapas, National Institute of Mental Health Ethnohistory sociolinguistics, and National Institute of Mental Health supplementary data processing, 1960-1962

  • [SEE ALSO Oversize Series]
Box 2   Folder 11

Closing of accounts, 1964, undated

Box 2   Folder 12

Informant salaries, 1961

Box 2   Folder 13

National Institute of Mental Health USPHS research grant no. 101 comptroller sheets and outstanding advance statements, 1960-1963

  • [SEE ALSO Oversize Series]
Box 2   Folder 14

National Institute of Mental Health USPHS research grant no. 101 expense vouchers, receipts, payment requests and invoices, 1960-1961

Box 2   Folder 15

National Institute of Mental Health USPHS research grant no. 101 travel vouchers, 1960-1962 [1 of 3]

  • [SEE ALSO Oversize Series]
Box 3   Folder 1

National Institute of Mental Health USPHS research grant no. 101 travel vouchers, 1960-1962 [2 of 3]

Box 3   Folder 2

National Institute of Mental Health USPHS research grant no. 101 travel vouchers, 1960-1962 [3 of 3]

Box 3   Folder 3

National Institute of Mental Health USPHS research grants no. 101 and 125 applications, budgets, and related correspondence, 1961-1964

Box 3   Folder 4

National Institute of Mental Health USPHS research grants no. 101 and 125 payroll forms, 1961-1962

Box 3   Folder 5

National Institute of Mental Health USPHS research grant no. 125 appropriation ledgers and budget transfer request, 1963-1964

  • [SEE ALSO Oversize Series]
Box 3   Folder 6

National Institute of Mental Health USPHS research grant no. 125 expense vouchers, receipts, payment requests, and invoices, 1961-1964

Box 3   Folder 7

National Institute of Mental Health USPHS research grant no. 125 travel advances and expense vouchers, 1961-1963 [1 of 3]

  • [SEE ALSO Oversize Series]
Box 3   Folder 8

National Institute of Mental Health USPHS research grant no. 125 travel advances and expense vouchers, 1961-1963 [2 of 3]

Box 3   Folder 9

National Institute of Mental Health USPHS research grant no. 125 travel advances and expense vouchers, 1961-1963 [3 of 3]

Box 3   Folder 10

National Science Foundation expenses, receipts, and notes for vegetation project, McQuown dialect survey, and Costa Rica trip, 1958-1961

  • [SEE ALSO Oversize Series]
Box 4   Folder 1

National Science Foundation – financial statements and related correspondence, mostly Norman McQuown and Albert Spaulding, 1959-1963

  • [SEE ALSO Oversize Series]
Box 4   Folder 2

National Science Foundation – travel expense vouchers and related documents, 1959-1962

Box 4   Folder 3

Personnel – lists and charts, appointment forms, salaries, reimbursements, and related correspondence, 1960-1962, 1983 [1 of 2]

  • [SEE ALSO Oversize Series]
Box 4   Folder 4

Personnel – lists and charts, appointment forms, salaries, reimbursements, and related correspondence, 1960-1962, 1983 [2 of 2]

Box 4   Folder 5

Receipts and expenses, 1961-1962

Box 4   Folder 6

Sarles, Harvey B. – grant and related correspondence, 1960-1962

  • [SEE ALSO Oversize Series]

Series III: Reports

This series contains bound volumes of the final reports on the Man in Nature Project and Chiapas Project as well as a roster of informants from both projects. The report on the Man in Nature Project is divided into three parts. There are two copies of each of the reports and one copy of the roster of informants. The material ranges in date from 1959-1971. All of the volumes are also part of the University of Chicago’s Microfilm Collection of Manuscripts on Cultural Anthropology (MCMCA), and their numbers and series in this collection are noted below.

Box 5

Department of Anthropology, University of Chicago, Report on the ‘Man-in-Nature’ Project of the Department of Anthropology of the University of Chicago in the Tzeltal-Tzotzil speaking region of the State of Chiapas, Mexico, Part I – The Findings, June 1959 [bound volume; copy 1 and 2] [MCMCA no. 92 Series XIV]

Box 6

Department of Anthropology, University of Chicago, Report on the ‘Man-in-Nature’ Project of the Department of Anthropology of the University of Chicago in the Tzeltal-Tzotzil speaking region of the State of Chiapas, Mexico, Part II – The Data, June 1959 [bound volume; copy 1 and 2] [MCMCA no. 93 Series XIV]

Box 7

Department of Anthropology, University of Chicago, Report on the ‘Man-in-Nature’ Project of the Department of Anthropology of the University of Chicago in the Tzeltal-Tzotzil speaking region of the State of Chiapas, Mexico, Part III – Supplemental Studies, June 1959 [bound volume; copy 1 and 2] [MCMCA no. 94 Series XIV]

Box 7

Department of Anthropology, University of Chicago, Social, Cultural, and Linguistic Change in the Highlands of Chiapas, July 1964 [bound volume; copy 1] [MCMCA no. 120 Series XXI]

Box 8

Department of Anthropology, University of Chicago, Social, Cultural, and Linguistic Change in the Highlands of Chiapas, July 1964 [bound volume; copy 2] [MCMCA no. 120 Series XXI]

Box 8

“University of Chicago Chiapas Projects Roster of Informants, 1956-1962,” 1971 [bound volume] [MCMCA no. 116 Series XXI]

Series IV: Audiovisual

This series contains photographs, negatives, and slide film that depict landscapes, indigenous people, and project staff in Mexico and Guatemala. In most cases, folder titles were taken from descriptions on the original images or their envelopes, which appear to have been created by Norman McQuown. The photographs and negatives were placed first in this series, followed by the slide film. Within both sets, the images are roughly in chronological order, with undated material at the end. The series ranges in date from 1942-1962, with some undated material.

Box 9   Folder 1

Photographs – Tuxtla Guitérez, with key identifying people, 1942

Box 9   Folder 2

Negatives – Tuxtla Guitérez, 1942

Box 9   Folder 3

Photographs and negatives – Cruz Obispo, Summer 1961

Box 9   Folder 4

Photographs – Teotihuacán and Acolman, including landscapes, Norman McQuown, and Andrés, March 1962

Box 9   Folder 5

Negatives – Teotihuacán and Acolman, including landscapes, Norman McQuown, and Andrés, March 1962

Box 9   Folder 6

Photographs – Andrés Medina portraits – indigenous people, undated

Box 9   Folder 7

Photographs – Andrés Medina portraits – indigenous people, with Norman McQuown captions on reverse, undated

Box 9   Folder 8

Photographs – Andrés Medina portraits – informants, undated

Box 9   Folder 9

Photographs – Andrés Medina portraits – project staff, individual portraits and group image, undated [individuals identified on reverse]

Box 9   Folder 10

Photographs – unlabeled group dinner?, undated

Box 9   Folder 11

Photograph – Norman McQuown and Roberto L.?, undated

Box 9   Folder 12

Photographs – Norman McQuown, Javier, and Marcelo, undated

Box 9   Folder 13

Photographs – portraits, labeled “Lacandon” and “San Bartolo,” undated

Box 9   Folder 14

Slide film – Mexico – party at Na Blom, cloud above Pinola, CMA (Gulf Coast), December 1960

Box 9   Folder 15

Slide film – Mexico – Casa Chicago, Equipo Chicago en Na Blom, Tuxtla Aeropuerto, and CMH (Comet), December 1960

Box 9   Folder 16

Slide film – Mexico – Ecatepec, party at Na Blom, December 1960

Box 9   Folder 17

Slide film – Mexico – Ecatepec, San Cristobal Valley, December 1960

Box 9   Folder 18

Slide film – Mexico – CMA (Tuxtla) and UNAM, March 1961

Box 9   Folder 19

Slide film – Mexico – Norman McQuown and Swadeshes at UNAM, UNAM buildings, and CMA (Comet), March 1961

Box 9   Folder 20

Slide film – Mexico – road to Chamula, July 1961

Box 9   Folder 21

Slide film – Mexico – Casa Chicago, Bechijtic, July 1961

Box 9   Folder 22

Slide film – Mexico – Bechijtic and Ichinton, July 1961 [including Norman McQuown working with informants]

Box 9   Folder 23

Slide film – Mexico – Tenejapa, including Norman McQuown, July 1961

Box 9   Folder 24

Slide film – Mexico – Tenejapa, July 1961

Box 9   Folder 25

Slide film – Guatemala – Guatemala City and Canal de Chiquimulilla, August 1961

Box 9   Folder 26

Slide film – Guatemala, August 1961

Box 9   Folder 27

Slide film – Guatemala – San Marcos and road to Jacaltenango, August 1961

Box 9   Folder 28

Slide film – Guatemala – road from San Mateo Ixtatán to Huehuetenango, August 1961

Box 9   Folder 29

Slide film – Guatemala – road to Huehuetenango, Zaculeu, August 1961

Box 9   Folder 30

Slide film – Guatemala, January 1962 [1 of 3]

Box 9   Folder 31

Slide film – Guatemala, January 1962 [2 of 3]

Box 9   Folder 32

Slide film – Guatemala, January 1962 [3 of 3]

Box 9   Folder 33

Slide film – Chamulas, undated [images of indigenous people labeled with locations] [1 of 2]

Box 9   Folder 34

Slide film – Chamulas, undated [images of indigenous people labeled with locations] [2 of 2]

Box 9   Folder 35

Slide film – San Mateo and San Francisco, undated

Series V: Oversize

This series contains material that is too large to fit in standard legal-sized folders, such as ledgers and charts. It is all from the financial series and has been arranged in the same manner as that series, alphabetically. The material ranges in date from 1960-1963.

Box 10   Folder 1

Budget – miscellaneous, including appropriation ledgers and staff salaries, including for National Science Foundation Chiapas, National Institute of Mental Health Ethnohistory sociolinguistics, and National Institute of Mental Health supplementary data processing, 1960-1962

Box 10   Folder 2

Income and expense charts, 1962, undated

Box 10   Folder 3

National Institute of Mental Health USPHS research grant M3847 appropriation ledgers, 1960-1962

Box 10   Folder 4

National Institute of Mental Health USPHS research grant no. 101 comptroller sheets [appropriation ledgers and distribution vouchers], 1960-1963

Box 10   Folder 5

National Institute of Mental Health USPHS research grant no. 101 research assistant salaries and travel, 1960-1961

Box 10   Folder 6

National Institute of Mental Health USPHS research grant no. 101 travel vouchers, 1960-1962

Box 10   Folder 7

National Institute of Mental Health USPHS research grant no. 125 appropriation ledgers, 1961-1963

Box 10   Folder 8

National Institute of Mental Health USPHS research grant no. 125 travel advances and expense vouchers, 1961-1963

Box 10   Folder 9

National Science Foundation comptroller’s appropriation ledgers, 1960-1962, undated

Box 10   Folder 10

National Science Foundation distribution registers, 1960

Box 10   Folder 11

National Science Foundation vegetation project comptroller’s appropriation ledger, 1960, undated

Box 10   Folder 12

Personnel – chart and payroll registers, 1960-1962

Box 10   Folder 13

Sarles, Harvey B. grant appropriation ledgers, 1962, undated