Robert Schuyler

Professor Emeritus, Anthropology

Former Associate Curator-In-Charge, Historical Archaeology Section, Penn Museum



Robert L. Schuyler is an anthropologist  with a specialization in Historical Archaeology which is the study of the Modern World (AD 1400 to the Present). He was educated at the University of Arizona and the Univesity of California, Santa Barbara and has taught at the University of Maryland, CCNY-City University Graduate Center, and the University of Pennsylvania. Educationally he has produced almost 40 PhDs in his specialization and in 2004 received the Dean's Award for Innovation in Undergraduate Education followed in 2008 by the Provost's Award for Distinguished PhD Teaching and Graduate Mentoring. Professionally in 1980 he served as the President (Executive Officer) of the Council for Northeast Historical Archaeology (CNEHA) and in 1982 as President of the Society for Historical Archaeology(SHA). In 2009 he was the recipient of the J.C. Harrington Medal in Historical Archaeology at the SHA Annual Conference in Toronto.

Schuyler is a long term advocate for Historical Archaeology as an integral part of general anthropology and for a cultural evolutionary approach to understanding human history including the formation (AD 1400-1600), establishment (AD 1600-1800) and transformation of the Modern World system (AD 1800 - the Present).

Courses Taught:

ANTH151/751 Archaeology of American History: Colonial Period

ANTH152/752 Archaeology of American History: National Period

ANTH219/719 Archaeology Field Project

ANTH220/720 Archaeology Field Project Laboratory

ANTH247/747 Archaeology Laboratory Field Project-Summer

ANTH451/751 Historical Archaeology

ANTH750/450 African American Archaeology

ANTH457/757 Themes in Historical Archaeology


Ph.D. University of California at Santa Barbara, 1975; MA UCSB 1968;   BA (Anthropology) University of Arizona 1964

CV (file)

Research Interests

Archaeology--North America and global; anthropological theory and history of anthropology and archaeology; evolutionism; historical archaeology, both colonial period and the 19th/20th centuries; East Coast and the historic American West. In 2001 initiated the South Jersey Project, a long-term investigation of Vineland, New Jersey (founded in 1861) and the region around this planned Victorian Period agricultural community. Project will equally explore both the 19th and the 20th centuries and involve not only archaeology but also archival, oral historic and ethnographic research. His Silver Reef Project (an archaeological study of a 19th century (1875-1895) abandoned ghost town in SW Utah) is also continuing with laboratory analysis, archival research, and a Public Archaeology program on the site.

Selected Publications




Editorial Experience

1973-1976 Editor for Archaeology, Absracts In Anthropology

1979-1982 Founding Editor, North American Archaeologist


1968 The Use of Historic Analogs in Archaeology, American Antiquity, Vol. 33, No. 3, pp. 390-392

1970 Historical and Historic Sites Archaeology as Anthropology: Basic Definitions and Relationships, Historical Archaeology, Vol. 4, pp 83-89

1971 The History of American Archaeology: An Examination of Procedure, American Antiquity, Vol. 36, No. 4, pp. 383-409

1974 Sandy Ground: Archaeological Sampling in a Black Community in Metropolitan New York, Papers of the Conference on Historic Sites Archaeology, Vol. 7, No. 2, PP. 12-52

1976 Images of America: the Contribution of Historical Archaeology to National Identity, Southwestern Lore, Vol. 42, No. 4, PP. 27-39

        The Supply Mill on Content Brook, an Example of the Excavation of Recent Historic Sites (with Christopher Mills), Journal of Field Archaeology, Vol. 3, pp. 61-95

         Historical Archaeology as an Integral Part of the Anthropology Curriculum, Chapter 13 (pp. 84-99) in Training in Archaeology Editor: William McHugh, Southern University Press

1977  The Written Word, The Spoken Word, Observed Behavior and Preserved Behavior: The Various Contexts Available to the Archaeologist, Papers of the Conferecne on Historic Sites Archaeology, Vol. 10, No. 2, pp. 99-120

         Archaeology of the New York Metropolis, Bulletin of the New York State Archaeological Association, Number 69, pp. 1-19

1978  Indian-Euroamerican Interaction: Archaeological Evidence from Non-Indian Sites, Chapter 7 in Volume 8 (California), pp. 69-80, Handbook of North American Indians, Volume Editor: Robert F. Heizer, Smithsonian Institution

1980  Sandy Ground: Archaeology of a 19th Century Oystering Village, Chapter 5, pp. 48-59, & Archaeology of Asian American Culture: An Annotated Bibliography, Chapter 13, pp. 124-132, in Archaeological Perspectives on Ethnicity in America, Baywood Publishing Company

1982  Urban Archaeology in America, Editor, Special Issue of North American Archaeologist, Vol. 3, No. 3

1988  Archaeological Remains, Documents and Anthropology: A Call for a New Cultue History, Historical Archaeology, Vol. 22, No. 1, PP. 36-42

         Silver Reef: Creation of a 'Historic Ethnography' for a 19th Century American Mining Town on the Western Frontier, Expedition, Vol. 30, No. 2, pp. 61-63

1990  Historical Archaeology in the American West: the View from Philadelphia, Historical Archaeology, Vol. 25, No. 3, pp. 7-17

1991  A 'Compleat' Curriculum: Historical Archaeology on the Undergraduate Level, pp. 33-40, Archaeology and Education: the Classroom and Beyond, Edited by K.C. Smith and Francis P. McManamon, National Park Serivce, Washington, D.C.

1993  The Society for Historical Archaeology 1967-1992, Historical Archaeology, Vol. 27, No. 1, pp. 35-43

1996  Frontier Sites of the American West, The Oxford Companion to Archaeology, pp. 241-243, Ed. Brian Fagan, Oxford University Press

1997  Culture Contact in Evolutionary Perspective, Chapter 4 (pp. 67-76), Studies in Culture Contact: Interaction, Culture Change and Archaeology, Ed. James G. Cusick, Southern Illinois Press

1998  History of Historical Archaeology, Bulletin of the History of Archaeology, Vol. 8, No. 2, 7-17

1999  The Centality of Post Medieval Studies ot General Historical Archaeology, Chapter 2, pp. 10-16, Old and New Wrolds, Eds. Geoff Egan and  R.L. Michael, Oxbow Books, London

2001  A Conversation With Edward B. Jelks, Historical Archaeology, Vol. 35, No. 4, pp. 8-37

2003  The Second Largest Ciity in the English Speaking World: John L. Cotter and the Historical Archaeology of Philadelphia 1960-1999, Chapter 8, pp. 156-164, Philadelphia and the Development of Americanist Archaeology, Eds. Don D. Fowler and David Wilcox, University of Alabama Press

2004  Vineland (p. 836), Charles K. Landis (pp. 453-455), Daily Journal (p. 189), Palace Depression (pp. 610-611), Encyclopedia of New Jersey, Eds. Maxine N. Lurie and Mark Mappen, Rutgers University Press

2011  The South Jersey Project: Historical Archaeology in the Largest City in New Jersey, The Vineland Magazine, Vol. 82, pp. 75-96, Vineland Historical and Antiquarian Society, Vineland, New Jersey




Former: Anthropology Department Faculty; Associate Curator in Charge, Historical Archaeology, University Museum; American Civilization Graduate Group.



Faculty Status