Bureau of American Ethnology

Courtesy of Jay Miller

Bureau of American Ethnology (BAE) was the US government office charged with the collection and publication of massive volumes (in drab green covers) concerned with the native peoples of North America.  Founded in 1879 and long directed by John Wesley Powell, it was staffed by dedicated amateurs like James Mooney, by the linguist JP Harrington, by natives like JNB Hewitt and Francis LaFleshe, by scientists who had shifted their focus, and by trained Boasians like John Swanton and TT Waterman.  Before he was ostracized for being a German and a Jew, Boas had a hand in some of its major projects and publications.