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COLLECTION Identifier: 72-23

"The Ethnology of the Valley of the Amazon," Brazil Expedition


The records consist of one unbound, handwritten manuscript by Hartt entitled, The Ethnology of the Valley of the Amazon.


  • 1871

Conditions Governing Access

Restrictions on access: Researchers may access the xerox copy of the manuscript found in accession file #72-23A.


.5 linear feet
In 1871 while conducting geological exploration in Brazil, Hartt was funded by the Peabody Museum to make collections of archaeological and ethnographic artifacts for the Museum. Hartt excavated in two areas: on the island of Pacoval Marajo, and along the Rio Tapajos, at Taperhina. The collections sent to the Peabody Museum by Hartt are also accessioned under #72-23. The Records consist of one unbound, longhand manuscript by Hartt entitled, "The Ethnology of the Valley of the Amazon." There is less than one linear foot of records in one box and they may be viewed as an extension of accession file #72-23. The manuscript was transferred to Archives in 1986 due to its fragility. A Portuguese translation of the manuscript was published in Archivos de Museu Nacional de Rio de Janeiro, vol. VI, 1883. There are no English published references.

Biographical Sketch

Charles Frederic Hartt was born in Fredericton, New Brunswick on August 23, 1840. Hartt's father, Jarvis William Hart, was an educator, and it was under his supervision that Hartt received his early education. Later Hartt entered Horton Academy, Wolfville, and graduated from Acadia College with honor in 1860. Hartt's strong interest in natural history dates from his boyhood. While a student at Acadia College, he conducted extensive research into the geology of Nova Scotia. Some of Hartt's early discoveries came to the attention of Harvard's Louis Agassiz who invited him to study in Cambridge in 1861. In 1865, Hartt was appointed one of the geologists on Agassiz's Thayer Expedition to Brazil. In 1867 Hartt returned to Brazil alone, exploring the reefs of the coast of Brazil and the Abroholhos Islands, as well as the geology of Bahia and Sergipe. While a professor of geology at Cornell University, Hartt headed his own expeditions to Brazil, the Morgan Expedition of 1870 and 1871. In 1874, Hartt was asked by the Brazilian Minister of Agriculutre to submit his plans for the organization of a Geological Commission of Brazil. On the reorganization of the National Museum at Rio in 1876, Hartt became director of geology, a position which enhanced his research and collecting opportunities. Hartt's greatest accomplishment in Brazil was his solution of the structure of the Amazonian Valley. His also remembered for his contributions to Brazilian Natural History Museums and his work combining ethnographical studies with his geological explorations. Hartt passed away in Rio de Janeiro in 1878 from yellow fever.

  1. Rathbun, Richard.Sketch of ProfessorC.F. Hartt, originally published in Popular Science Monthly, June 13,1878.
  2. Lopes, MariaMargaret. C.F. Hartt's Contribution to Brazilian Museums of Natural History.Earth Sciences History. vol. 13, number 2 / 1994, pp. 174-179.

Physical Location

Peabody Museum Archives

Immediate Source of Acquisition


These papers were originally in accession file #72-23A and were removed to the Peabody Museum Archives November 1986 because of fragility.

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.
Brazil Expedition Records, 1871 : 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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