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Accepted Paper:

Establishing the Indigenous Voice in Museum Collections: An Analysis of collections associated with the Hudson's Bay Company.  
Darrell Racine (Brandon University)

Paper Short Abstract:

This work will examine early collecting practices in Canada that are associated with the Hudson's Day Company. This work will argue that by broadening our concept of provenance research that it is possible to find and reestablish the Indigenous voice in the historical record.

Paper Abstract:

This paper will discuss the anthropological theory and practice required to ensure Indigenous contributions to science and ethnology are recognized. It will be shown that by examining museum collections databases and then cross-referencing this data with expedition narratives and the Hudson’s Bay Company archive that hidden colonial objectives and previously unknown Indigenous contributions to Imperial science and the historical foundations of ethnology. I demonstrate that the collection of natural history specimens and data from a very early point in Hudson's Bay Company history led to some of the first systematically collected ethnological collections by western institutions. In conclusion, I will argue that by broadening our concept of provenance research and re-establishing the Indigenous voice in the historical narrative a strong foundation will be created for Canadian/Indigenous reconciliation.

Panel OP071
Doing provenance research otherwise. From undoing colonial epistemologies to pluralising knowledge with museum collections
  Session 2 Thursday 18 July, 2024, -