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Robert S. Neitzel Collection

Collection 147

Neitzel, Robert S. (1911–1980). Collection, 1954–1983, n.d.

2.5 feet

Robert Stuart Neitzel contributed to archaeology in the Lower Mississippi Valley and the southeastern United States for 30 productive years. He was born in Falls City, Neb., on May 6, 1911. He attended the University of Nebraska, and went to graduate school at the University of Chicago. His first professional jobs were with WPA archaeology teams in Tennessee and Louisiana. His work took him to Marksville where he chose to settle. He met Gwen Thomas, married her in 1941 and they had two children. After running a farm for around 10 years Neitzel returned to archaeology in the 1950s. He made major contributions to archaeological work in Louisiana, Mississippi, and Georgia. He is best known for his work with Indian sites, especially those connected with the Marksville culture, and the Tunica and Natchez tribes. (For more biographical information see Brain and Brown, eds., "Robert S. Neitzel - The Great Sun," Lower Mississippi Survey Bulletin No. 9 (1982) [5-12]

The collection dates almost entirely from the 1970s. One major exception is a series of photocopied correspondence from the 1950s involving the Prehistoric Indian Museum Neitzel founded and directed in Marksville. The collection is organized into series. The first contains general correspondence. The Subject Series is arranged in alphabetical order and contains correspondence, work papers, maps, notes, newsletters, etc. The next two series are Publication and Writings. The latter includes both draft and published material. Finally, the notebooks contain notes Neitzel kept which relate to several of his publications. Most of the oversized maps in the last series came from the subject files.

This collection was donated by Mrs. Robert S. Neitzel.


  1. General Correspondence 1-1 through 2-9
  2. Subject Files 2-10 through 5-1
  3. Publications
    1. General 5-2 through 5-7
    2. About Neitzel (or where he worked) 5-8 through 5-12
  4. Writings 5-13 through 6-7
  5. Notes 7-1 through 7-4
  6. Maps Map Case 24-8


I. General Correspondence

1-1 Commonworth Associates, 1977-1978

1-2 Haag, Hadleigh, West, 1978-1980 re: Haag Festschrift. See 6-1 for drafts of Neitzel's contribution

1-3 Louisiana Department of Culture, Recreation, and Tourism, 1977-1980

1-4 Marksville Prehistoric Indian Museum, 1956 (photocopies)

1-5 Same, 1955: July - December

1-6 Same, 1955: January - June

1-7 Same, 1954

1-8 Mississippi Department of Archives and History, 1976-1980

1-9 Same: September, 1974 - December, 1975

1-10 Same: September, 1973 - August, 1974

1-11 Penman, John, 1973-1974

1-12 Professional correspondence: 1979-1980 Includes: much personal material, draft for Quimby Festschrift

1-13 Same: 1978

1-14 Same: 1977. Includes William Morgan and Associates

1-15 Same: 1976

1-16 Same: 1975

2-1 Same: 1974

2-2 Same: 1973

2-3 Same: 1960-1972

2-4 Same: miscellaneous. Includes: clippings; obituaries; laws; newsletters of Louisiana Environmental Professionals Association, 1977-1978 (4 issues)

2-5 Sam, Archie, 1971-1978. Includes articles on Natchez tribe culture. See 4-10 for more Archie Sam correspondence

2-6 South, Stanley, 1972-1980

2-7 Southeastern Archaeology Conference, 1974-1980. Includes: membership list (4/1979); some records

2-8 Sunbelt Research Corporation, 1980

2-9 Webb, Dr. Clarence H., 1973-1980

II. Subject Files

2-10 Arkansas Archaeological Society, 1972, 1974 (2 items)

2-11 Contract archaeology: Louis J. Daigre Associates, Inc., 1977-1979

2-12 Same: Meyer, Meyer, LaCroix, and Hixon, Inc., 1976-1978

2-13 Same: other companies, 1976-1977

2-14 Same: same, 1978-1980

3-1 Same: Southern Archaeological Research

3-2 Same: C. L. Jack Stelly and Associates, Inc., 1979

3-3 Same: U. S. Corps of engineers, 1976-1980. Includes site report by Jon Gibson

3-4 Same: U. S. D. A. Soil Conservation Service, 1979-1980 (Mississippi) [2-11 through 3-4 includes many site reports as part of environmental impact surveys for sites in Louisiana and Mississippi - Maps removed to Map Case 24-8]

3-5 Grand Village of the Natchez: July 1971 - March 1972 mainly correspondence; some field personnel records

3-6 Same: 1972: April-June

3-7 Same: July 1972 - March 1973

3-8 Same: 1973, April - December

3-9 Same: 1974-1979

3-10 Same: miscellaneous. Notes; writings; photos; transparencies; field reports; etc.

3-11 Louisiana Archaeological Society, 1974-1976

3-12 Same: 1977-1980

4-1 Same: drafts of articles

4-2 Louisiana Delta Plantation: Cowpen Slough Site, 1977-1978

4-3 Lower Mississippi Survey Conference: Avery Island, 1978: May 11-14

4-4 Same: correspondence of personnel, 1972-1977

4-5 Mississippi Department of Archives and History: Fort St. Peter Study, 1974-1975. includes report

4-6 Mississippi River Flood Control System (2 items) newspaper articles: 1972, 1979

4-7 Natchez Tribe: language, kinship. correspondence, 1977-1980; photocopies of articles

4-8 Natchez bones, 1972-1977 correspondence concerning laboratory work, etc.

4-9 Smithsonian Handbook: notes

4-10 Same: correspondence, 1971-1977

4-11 Same: stylesheets and directions

4-12 Society of Professional Archaeologists, 1977-1980 correspondence, memos, etc.

4-13 Same: newsletters

4-14 "The Teocenti" (annual publication): 1968-1979

4-15 University of Chicago: class notes: "Material Culture of Malaysia"

5-1 Winterville State Park, Mississippi, 1974 material on restoration project: correspondence; surveys; etc.

III. Publications

A. General

5-2 Penman, John: articles

5-3 Articles:

  • Bradford, A. L. and T. N. Campbell, eds. "Journal of Lincecum's Travels in Texas, 1837," reprint

  • from Southwestern Historical Quarterly, v.53, #2 (October, 1949).

  • Bonham, Milledge L., Jr. "Man and Nature at Port Hudson, 1863, 1917." Published by Committee for the Preservation of the Port Hudson Battlefield, 1965.

  • Russell, Margaret C. "Lamar to Creek," speech, 1973.

5-4 Saturday Evening Post series on Western Thought, 1960

5-5 Journal of Mississippi History, v.45, # 3 (August, 1983) has article on mission to Natchez tribe

5-6 McMichael, Edward V. "The Anatomy of a Tradition: A Study of Southeastern Stamped Pottery," dissertation, Indiana University, 1960 photocopy

5-7 Miscellaneous notes, published drawings, etc.

B. About Neitzel (or where he worked)

5-8 Mississippi Magic, v. 16, # 3 (May, 1961) contains article about Mississippi State Museum

5-9 Natchez Ink Pad, v.11 # 2 (April, 1965) contains article on Neitzel's work at Grand Village of the Natchez

5-10 Merci, July, 1978: program journal of WYES TV. article about "On The Tunica Trail" production

5-11 Brain, Jeffery P., ed. "Tunica Treasure," Papers of the Peabody Museum of Archaeology and Ethnology, v. 71, 1979

5-12 Brain, Jeffery P. and Ian W. Brown, eds. "Robert S. Neitzel - The Great Sun," Lower Mississippi Survey Bulletin No. 9 (1982)

IV. Writings

5-13 Articles for Tunale Mosaic, 1977. Festschrift for Robert Wauchope. Includes correspondence

6-1 Article for Festschrift for Bill Haag, 1979. Includes draft, notes, illustrations, and research materials

6-2 Neitzel, Robert S. "A Suggested Technique for Measuring Landscape Changes Through Archaeology," Geoscience and Man, v. 22 (May, 1981): 57-70

6-3 Neitzel, Robert S. and J. Stephen Perry. "A Prehistory of Central and North Louisiana Submitted to the Research Institute of Northeast Louisiana University," July, 1977

6-5 ("The Natchez Grand Village"), n.d., draft

6-6 "The Grand Village of the Natchez Revisited," n.d., typescript

6-7 Neitzel, Robert S. "The Grand Village of the Natchez Revisited," Mississippi Department of Archives and History Archaeological Report No. 12, 1983 (2 copies)

See 1-12, 2-10 through 3-4, 4-1, 4-5, 4-15 for other writings

V. Notes

7-1 Grand Village Report, 1974

7-2 Fatherland notes

7-3 Fatherland manuscript project notes

7-4 Same

VI. Maps

Map Case 24-8

  • Marksville, Louisiana: site plan prepared by W. Morgan, October, 1977

  • South, Stanley, "The Function of Observation in the Archeological Process," in The Conference on Historic Site Archaeology Papers, 1972, v. 7 (August, 1974) published; illustrations

  • Engineering drawings, maps, etc., connected with survey work: Moreauville, Lake Bruin

  • Grand Village of the Natchez: site plan for historic park

  • Winterville: material on development of park