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Anthropologist to speak at P.C.


Olympic National Park anthropologist Jacilee Wray will be the featured speaker at Peninsula College’s Studium Generale program at 12:35 p.m. Oct. 31 in the Little Theater.

 

Wray will talk about the park’s Native American basket collection and the book, "From the Hands of a Weaver: Olympic Peninsula Basketry through Time," which she edited.

 

Baskets from the park’s collection are on display in the Peninsula College Longhouse Art Gallery. A reception will be held in the Longhouse immediately following the conclusion of Wray’s Studium Generale program.

 

The public is invited to both events, which are free. The basket exhibit will be on display through the end of the year.

 

Wray says the driving force behind her book was “to make the public aware of the area’s rich art form of basketry.”

 

The park’s basket collection dates back to 1941, when donations were first made to the park, Wray notes. The oldest basket in the collection is 2,800 years old, while the newest comes from the 1960s-era.

 

Wray has been the anthropologist at Olympic National Park for 23 years. She has a master's degree from Northern Arizona University in Flagstaff and a bachelor's degree from Western Washington University. Both are in cultural anthropology.

 

Wray has worked with the Olympic Peninsula Intertribal Cultural Advisory Committee (OPICAC) to write "Native Peoples of the Olympic Peninsula: Who We Are"

 

and "From the Hands of a Weaver: Olympic Peninsula Basketry through Time." She also has written the park's Ethnographic Overview and Assessment and the book "Postmistress, Mora, Wash.: Journal Entries and Photographs of Fannie Taylor."

 

She is working on a super-sized ethnohistory study of the Queets watershed.

 

For information on other upcoming events, visit the college website at www.pencol.edu or www.facebook.com/PeninsulaCollege.

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