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Guy E. Gibbon papers

Identifier: ua01308

Scope and Contents

The Guy Gibbon papers contain the professional and project material created and maintained by Gibbon during his time as a Professor within the Department of Anthropology. Material includes the Minnesota Archaeological Newsletters, working documents for his publications and course material. As well, a bulk of the material contains material related to his research, including the Projectile Point Project and annotated articles on archaeological topics.


  • Creation: 1937-2011


Conditions Governing Access

Open for use in the Elmer L. Andersen Library reading room.

Conditions Governing Use

This collection may be protected by the Copyright Law of the United States (Title 17, U.S. Code). It is the user's responsibility to verify copyright ownership and to obtain all necessary permissions prior to the reproduction, publication, or other use of any portion of these materials. Researchers may quote from the collection under the fair use provision of the copyright law.

Biographical Note

Guy E. Gibbon was born on April 19, 1939 in Madison, Wisconsin. He attended the University of Wisconsin Madison and received his Bachelor of Science degree in 1964, his Masters of Science degree in 1966 and his Ph.D. in 1969 (1). Gibbon began his career as a visiting assistant professor of Anthropology at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign from 1969-1970 and continued as an Assistant Professor through the summer of 1972 (1). He then began as an Assistant Professor at the University of Wisconsin - Milwaukee from 1972 to 1973 (1). In 1973, Gibbon became an Assistant Professor within the Department of Anthropology at the University of Minnesota and was soon promoted to Associate Professor in June of 1976 (1). In 1981, Gibbon was appointed as the Acting Director for the Center for Ancient Studies and in 1984 was appointed as the Director (1). On April 26, 1991, Gibbon was promoted to a full rank professor and in 1995 to 1997, he took on the MnMap project, a joint project between the University of Minnesota and the Minnesota Department of Transportation to develop a cultural resource management software, as the Research Director.

Gibbon took various sabbaticals to utilize time towards writing and research. Included in this was his time at Heidelberg University in Germany, where he completed his manuscript for his book, “Theory Construction in Archaeology” from 1977-1978 (2). He also studied Roman history and archaeology north of the Mediterranean at Tubingen University in West Germany between September of 1984 to June of 1985 (1). His final sabbatical was from September of 1994 to May of 1995, where he studied precontact Native American mortuary variability in Minnesota.

Gibbon also received significant funding through grants to perform surveys and archaeological excavations. Included in this was a 33,000 dollar funding through the National Park Service to perform a preliminary archaeological survey of Voyageurs National Park in 1976 and 15,000 dollar funding to perform an archeological survey of southwestern Minnesota through the Minnesota State Historical Society in 1979 (1).

Publications written by Gibbon include The Sheffield Site: An Oneota Site on the St. Croix River in 1973, The Mississippian Occupation of the Red Wing Area in 1979, Anthropological Archaeology in 1984, Explanation in Archaeology in 1989, The Sioux in 2003, Archaeology of Minnesota: The Prehistory of the Upper Mississippi River Region in 2012 and Critically Reading the Theory and Methods of Archaeology: An Introductory Guide in 2013.

Outside of his professional work at the University of Minnesota, Gibbon was also the President of the Council for Minnesota Archaeology from 1976 to 1978 and was awarded the Increase Lpham Award for distinguished service to Wisconsin archaeology in 1974 (1). Guy Gibbon retired from teaching on May 29, 2011 and passed away January 28, 2020 (1).


(1) Biographical File, Gibbon, Guy E., Information files collection, University Archives.

(2) Board of Regents Meeting Minutes, January 13, 1977


17.44 Cubic Feet (12 record boxes, 1 1/2 Hollinger box and 2 flat boxes)

Language of Materials



This collection contains the professional and project material created and utilized by Dr. Guy E. Gibbon as a Professor within the Department of Anthropology at the University of Minnesota.


  • Series 1: Professional and Personal Material, 1959-2011
    • Subseries 1.1: Council for Minnesota Archaeology, 1971-2004
    • Subseries 1.2: Course Material, 1984-2011
    • Subseries 1.3: Course Slides, 1959-2000
    • Subseries 1.4: Departmental Material and Correspondence, 1975-2008
    • Subseries 1.5: Minnesota Archaeological Newsletter, 1960-1983
    • Subseries 1.6: Personal Material, 1976
    • Subseries 1.7: Publications, 1979-2011
    • Subseries 1.8: Reading Anthropology, 2002-2003
  • Series 2: Project Material, 1937-2008
    • Subseries 2.1: Projectile Point Project, 1966-2004
    • Subseries 2.2: Research and Project Material, 1937-2008

Immediate Source of Acquisition

The Guy E. Gibbon papers were donated by Matt Edling to the University Archives in June of 2015.

Processing Information

Processing completed with funds from the State of Minnesota from the Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund through the Minnesota Historical Society (2021-2022).

Guy Gibbon papers
Zoltan Lohse; Katelyn Morken
April-June 2022
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Collecting Area Details

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