Young scholar wins award for Arctic research

April 6, 2009

Young scholar wins award for Arctic research

Gatineau, Quebec, April 6, 2009 — A graduate student at the University of Western Ontario is this year’s recipient of the William E. Taylor Research Award, established by the Canadian Museum of Civilization to recognize and encourage excellence in human history research in the Canadian Arctic. John Moody, a master’s student in Western’s Department of Anthropology, is being recognized for his research into the early migration of ancestral Inuit from Alaska into Arctic Canada. 

First presented in 1999, the William E. Taylor Research Award is open exclusively to young or new scholars. It includes a cash prize of $5,000. The award is named in memory of William E. Taylor, Jr., a renowned archaeologist and Arctic scholar who had a long and distinguished career with the National Museum of Man, a forerunner of the Canadian Museum of Civilization. Dr. Taylor died in 1994.

Award-winner John Moody is conducting research on archaeological collections from a long-abandoned Inuit settlement — called the Tiktalik site — northeast of Inuvik, N.W.T. The site dates from about AD 1250. It was first identified in 1989 by the Taylor Award’s namesake, and later excavated by archaeologists from the Museum of Civilization.

Mr. Moody’s research will contribute to an on-going effort by scientists to better understand how, when and why early Inuit came to the Canadian Arctic. His project specifically seeks to identify and analyze animal bones found at the Tiktalik site, a valuable source of information about the people who once lived there. His thesis is titled “A Multiscalar Analysis of Subsistence Practices during the Thule Migration.”

Among the former recipients of the William E. Taylor Research Award is Dr. Matthew Betts, an archaeologist now with the Museum of Civilization and the curator of its current blockbuster exhibition Tombs of Eternity: The Afterlife in Ancient Egypt.

The Canadian Museum of Civilization is Canada’s national museum of human and social history and one of the country’s leading centres of research in the fields of archaeology, history, ethnology and cultural studies.

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Canadian Museum of Civilization
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