Year of Award


Document Type


Degree Type

Master of Arts (MA)

Degree Name

Anthropology (Cultural Heritage Option)

Department or School/College

Department of Anthropology

Committee Chair

Douglas H. MacDonald

Commitee Members

Anna M. Prentiss, Steven D. Sheriff


The Anzick Site, Anzick Reburial, Anzick Clovis, Kennewick, Samuel Stockton White V, Genome of a Late Pleistocene Human


University of Montana


The history of the post-discovery Anzick Clovis Site has been questioned as to its proper handling for decades regarding the dynamics of law, tribal position, public position, scientific and academic position and the interactions of the Anzick family as the owners of the real property. In this thesis, I present my findings that the Anzick remains and artifact assemblage were indeed handled appropriately through the years, considering the longitudinal changes in law and continual contribution from other legal cases to the concepts of proper handling of ancient remains. Reflecting on theoretical concepts such as individual human agency, socio-cultural construct and cultural diversity, it is possible to fill the void of cultural misunderstanding pertaining to many anthropological issues. The application of anthropological thought to cultural topics is critical to provide an informed basis from which we may study a specific issue. The anthropological community must consider the potential corollaries of their findings, focusing on respectful and collaborative interaction with a subject society and its peoples. While anthropology is the “the study of humankind”, the definition itself may be misconstrued to suggest or reflect an overtly ethnocentric and hegemonic arrogance. To achieve a collaborative objective, the anthropologist must consider aspects of the study and its cultural implications, with an emphasis on the emic perspective. In this paper, I evaluate specific archaeological case studies which elucidate the importance of respectful collaboration and understanding between the public, anthropologists and Native Americans. As an example of system failure, I discuss the case of the Kennewick Man, comparing and contrasting it with the facts pertaining to the handling of the Anzick Clovis remains which were in fact reburied in June, 2014. My personal involvement with the Anzick reburial, included in-depth personal correspondence and discussion with the family regarding viable options as well as actually hand-digging the grave for the reburial. This close connection with the Anzick reburial activities provides a first-hand accounting of real-life issues encountered during such a process. It is incumbent upon everyone involved to understand our mutual perspectives, from individual agent to the highest level of a cultural entirety. With the help of balanced collaborative interactions we may successfully implement a much needed trans-cultural healing. As the importance of these collaborative interactions cannot be overstated, I will utilize this thesis as the foundation from which I will build my doctoral dissertation. This dissertation will be presented in the form of a comprehensive study of the Anzick Site.



© Copyright 2015 Samuel S. White V