Western Australian Museum Anthropology and Archaeology Department collections



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The Anthropology and Archaeology department's collections chiefly focus on objects collected from Western Australian Aboriginal cultures, including stone tools from locations throughout WA and other parts of the world, as well as objects from other parts of the world such as Papua New Guinea, Melanesia and Africa.

15,000 objects described as 'ethnographic' and 15,000 register entries in the Archaeology collections; indigenous cultures and the ancient world, archaeology. The representation of Western Australian Aboriginal cultures has been a significant focus of the Museum since its inception in 1892. The early collections reflect hunting and gathering lifestyles, and personal adornment of the peoples of the South West, Pilbara, Desert and Kimberley regions. The collection traces the impact and influence of Europeans on the Aboriginal peoples of Western Australia and includes objects representing the innovative use of introduced materials and the continuity of Aboriginal traditional knowledge and skills. Working with the Western Australian Museum's Aboriginal Advisory Committee and communities around Western Australia, the Anthropology and Archaeology department currently focuses on collecting material that reflect issues of identity, connection to country, sustainable community and cultural maintenance. The collection grows through donation, purchase, and fieldwork with Aboriginal communities.


Aboriginal artefacts; Aboriginal culture; Aboriginal peoples (Australians); Ancient history; Anthropologists; Archaeology; Hunting; Indigenous artefacts; Photography

Aboriginal material culture; Anthropology; Archaeology; Indigenous peoples; Museum; Perth; Photographs; Western Australia

Aboriginal peoples; Ancient history; Antiquities; Archaeology; Hunting; Indigenous Australian peoples; Indigenous peoples; Photography; Tools

Anthropological specimens; Hunting and gathering tools; Personal adornments; Photographs; Tools

Coverage Spatial

Papua New Guinea; Perth, Western Australia; Melanesia; Western Australia; Africa

Related Collections


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2011-03-24 10:45