Also located atop Museum Hill is the Museum of Indian Arts and Culture. Founded in 1909 by anthropologist Edgar Lee Hewett, its mission was to preserve the cultures of the Southwest Native American communities, in concert with members of those communities.Eighteen years later, John D. Rockefeller founded the "Laboratory of Anthropology" along similar lines. By 1947, the two institutions had merged, thus, creating "..the most inclusive and systematically acquired collection of New Mexican and Southwestern anthropological artifacts in the country." ( quoted from the museum's mission statement on its Web site). However, because of a lack of funding, an adequate building to house and display the collections of the two institutions was not available until 1987. This new combination included works of textiles, pottery, baskets, and contemporary art. In addition, the collections included artifacts that depicted New Mexico's everyday life. These collections number between an estimated 5 to 10 million items ("estimated" because many are stored as "bulk" collections). It probably comes as no surprise to many who know us, Lori and I have had a long-standing history of interest in Native American cultures. In light of that history, it was important for us to explore this interesting museum.
Perhaps one of the most important aspects of southwestern Pueblo life was the proximity of a general store, an example of which is recreated here.
David Bradley is a Chippewa Native American who had lived for a time with the Navajos of Arizona. Currently living in Santa Fe, Bradley no longer paints because of suffering from ALS.