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.
1998 “Experimentation in 19th Century Bloomery Iron Production: Evidence from the
Adirondacks of New York.” The Journal of the Historical Metallurgy Society 28(1): 33–40, London.
1993 Bottles and Business in Plattsburgh, New York: 100 Years of Embossed Bottles as Historical
Artifacts. Clinton County Historical Association. A 16-page supplement to this book was produced
1991 “The Company Store of 'S.P. Bowen & Co.' at Clayburgh, New York, 1869.” The Antiquarian 7(1): 10–16, Clinton County Historical Association. Awarded a McMaster's Prize for
Excellent Writing on North Country History.
1985 “The Spanish League and Inca Sites: a Reassessment of the 1566 Itinerary of
Juan de Matienzo through N.W. Argentina.” in Recent Studies in Andean Prehistory and Protohistory, edited by D.P. Kvietok and D.H. Sandweiss, pp. 179–198, Cornell University Latin
American Studies Program, Ithaca.
1983 “The Prehistory of N.W. Argentina: the Calchaquí Valley Project 1977-1981.” Journal of Field Archaeology 10(1): 11–32.
1975 Prehistory and Desert Adaptation in Northern Chile: The Ceramic Stage of the Middle
Río Loa Region. State University of New York Press, Albany. [Dr. Pollard’s doctoral dissertation]
1975 “Llama herding and settlement in pre-Hispanic northern Chile: application of
an analysis for determining domestication.” co-authored with I.M. Drew. American Antiquity 40(3): 296–305.
1975 “Archaeological maize from northern Chile.” co-authored with Paul Mangelsdorf.
Botanical Museum Leaflets of Harvard University 24(3): 49–64.
1971 “Cultural change and adaptation in the central Atacama Desert of northern Chile.”
Ñawpa Pacha 9, pp. 41–64. Institute of Andean Studies, Berkeley.