Dr. Gordon C. Pollard
SUNY Distinguished Teaching Professor Emeritus of Anthropology
Gordon Pollard is an archaeologist who received his B.A. in Anthropology from Rice University in Houston, Texas, and his Ph.D. in Anthropology from Columbia University in New York City. His doctoral field research in the 1960s focused on pre-Hispanic cultural development in the Atacama Desert region of northern Chile, from the beginning of sedentary village life based on farming and llama herding, up to the arrival of the Spanish in the 16th century. He conducted subsequent fieldwork across the Andes in northwest Argentina where similar patterns of culture had emerged.
Desiring to involve students in fieldwork in addition to his classroom courses, Dr. Pollard’s research shifted to historical archaeology in the 1980s, and he conducted numerous field and laboratory courses related to local 19th century history. Over many years these included the Rickert-Allen farm house site in Peru (N.Y.), the Kent-Delord House in Plattsburgh, the Caldwell iron mine site at Clayburg in the Saranac Valley, and the large iron-making site at Clintonville in the Ausable Valley. When Dr. Pollard retired in 2010, the complete collection of his archaeological research materials, including photographs, were acquired by Special Collections in Feinberg Library. Links to the guides to the collection are provided in the section on publications, below.
Since his retirement from teaching, Dr. Pollard has continued research and publication on our region’s former iron industry. As well, he is serving as a part-time Special Collections assistant in Feinberg Library, helping to process and preserve the wide range of collections and materials that have been dedicated to that repository.