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COLLECTION Identifier: 995-6

Oric Bates papers


The collection consists primarily of British maps of North Africa, most with annotations.


  • 1911-1917 (bulk)

Conditions Governing Access

Restrictions on access: none

Conditions Governing Use

Restrictions on use: none


.5 linear feet
The collection includes British maps of North Africa, most with annotations (Tripoli, Mersa Matru, Ben-Ghazi, Cyrene, Dernah to Ras Bulau, and Ras Bulau to Alexandria) as well as several maps that were published in Harvard African Studies.

There are also related archaeological and ethnographic objects, and some human remains, collected or donated by Bates during several expeditions to Africa in 1902 and 1910-1917. Supporting documentation for objects can be found in the Museum accession files which include exhibition labels, lists of specimens, notes, correspondence, notebooks and financial records.

Biographical Sketch

Oric Bates (1883-1918) was the Peabody Museum's first scholar to work extensively in Africa. He received his A.B. from Harvard in 1905, and was subsequently involved with several Peabody expeditions, including those directed by George Reisner to Egypt, and others to Tripoli, Nubia, and the Libyan desert. He became Curator of African Archaeology and Ethnology at the Peabody in 1914, a position he held until his untimely death in 1918. In 1917, he began the Harvard African Studies publication series, of which he edited the first two volumes.

Physical Location

Peabody Museum Archives

Related Peabody Museum Collections:

  1. Accessions associated with Oric Bates (and any associated accession files): 11-7, 12-47, 14-12, 15-9, 15-28, 15-60, 16-43, 17-2, 17-41, 19-22, 24-24, 26-57, 27-40, 35-80, 37-60, 42-26

General note

Collections records may contain language, reflecting past collecting practices and methods of analysis, that is no longer acceptable. The Peabody Museum is committed to addressing the problem of offensive and discriminatory language present in its database. Our museum staff are continually updating these records, adding to and improving content. We welcome your feedback and any questions or concerns you may want to share.

Processing Information

Processed by: Victoria Swerdlow cataloguer; July 1987; edited by Patricia H. Kervick, Associate Archivist; January 2010
Link to catalog
Bates, Oric, 1883-1918, Papers, 1911-1917, bulk : A Finding Aid
Peabody Museum Archives

Repository Details

Part of the Peabody Museum Archives Repository

The Peabody Museum Archives contains primary source materials that reflect the Museum’s archaeological and ethnographic research and fieldwork since its founding in 1866. Archival collections contain photographs, documents, papers, and records of enduring value that were created or collected by the Museum, its individual affiliates, or other related entities. The collections also document the history or provenience, as well as the creation of many of the Museum’s artifact collections. To learn more about research visits at the Peabody Museum, please see

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