Museum of Anthropology

William S. Webb Museum of Anthropology

Founded in 1931, the William S. Webb Museum of Anthropology has three primary purposes: to acquire and maintain anthropological collections, support anthropological research, and disseminate anthropological knowledge. The extensive holdings serve to link the past, the present, and the future. The Museum is charged with several responsibilities: to serve a diverse audience, from the layperson to professionals; to preserve significant, irreplaceable objects; and to contribute to our understanding of past and present cultures, especially those of prehistoric Kentucky.

WPA excavations at the Wright Large Mound, Montgomery County, Kentucky, August, 1938. William S. Webb Museum of Anthropology, Neg. No. 2221.



The Museum maintains a small exhibition area in the foyer of Lafferty Hall.  Exhibits are designed and fabricated by anthropology students highlighting items in the museum's collection.  Currently on display:

  • The Rise of Modern Archaeology in Kentucky
  • Odisha: An Unbroken History of an Enduring People
  • Exploring the Northwest: The Collection of Anthropologist Margaret Lantis (1906-2006)


The museum encourages professionals, students, and other researches to conduct research on our extensive collections. Access to the collections for research purposes is by application. Contact the Museum Director, George Crothers, for more information.


Archaeological Curation

The Museum provides permanent curation for archaeological contract projects conducted within Kentucky, student thesis/dissertation or professional research projects, or other research involving archaeological excavation. Museum curation guidelines must be met before projects will be accepted. Curation fees are charged for all contract archaeology projects. Student projects do not require the payment of a curation fee. Fees are negotiable for other types of projects.

To curate collections with the Webb Museum:

For curation guidelines, click here.

For Historic Artifact Discard Policy (estabilshed by the Kentucky Heritage Council/State Historic Preservation Office), click here.

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