Smithsonian director to speak at Augustana College

Staff Writer
Aledo Times Record

Dr. William W. Fitzhugh, director of the Smithsonian’s Arctic Studies Center in the Department of Anthropology at the National Museum of Natural History, Washington, D.C., will speak at Augustana College at 7:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Nov. 1. Free and open to the public, the lecture will be given in Robert A. and Patricia K. Hanson Hall of Science (726 35th St.), Room 102.

 “He will shed new light on the well-known Viking culture,” said Dr. Emil A. Kramer, associate professor of the classics, English and history at Augustana.

From the rise of the Scandinavian kingdoms during the Viking Age (A.D. 750 to 1050) to the demise of the Greenland colonies around A.D. 1500, Dr. Fitzhugh will examine the history of the western expansion by the Vikings. “Through his presentation, titled ‘Vikings: The North Atlantic Saga,’ Dr. Fitzhugh will explore the origins and impacts of the Vikings’ pivotal moment in history,” said Dr. Kramer.

Dr. Fitzhugh is an anthropologist specializing in circumpolar archaeology, ethnology and environmental studies. He has spent more than 40 years studying and publishing on Arctic peoples and cultures in northern Canada, Alaska, Russia, Scandinavia and Mongolia. Dr. Fitzhugh earned a bachelor’s from Dartmouth College and a master’s and doctorate from Harvard University.

The lecture is sponsored by the Western Illinois Society of the Archaeological Institute of America, and funding is provided by Augustana's classics department and the H.S.B. Johnson Foundation for the Classics.    

  For more information or to arrange an interview, please contact Keri Rursch, director of public relations, at or (309) 794-7721.

About Augustana: Founded in 1860 and situated on a 115-acre campus near the Mississippi River, Augustana College is a private, liberal arts institution affiliated with the Evangelical Church in America (ELCA). The college enrolls nearly 2,500 students from diverse geographic, social, ethnic and religious backgrounds and offers more than 70 majors and related areas of study. Augustana employs 287 faculty members and has a student-faculty ratio of 11:1. Augustana continues to do what it has always done: challenge and prepare students for lives of leadership and service in our complex, ever-changing world.