St. Catherines: An Island in Time

By David Hurst Thomas | Go to book overview

About the Author

Since 1972, David Hurst Thomas has served as curator of anthropology at the American Museum of Natural History in New York; for seven years, he was chairman of the Department of Anthropology. He has taught at Columbia University; New York University; the University of California, Davis; the University of Florida; the University of Nevada; and the City College of New York, and he has lectured in more than forty countries.

A specialist in Native American archaeology, he holds four degrees from the University of California, Davis (PhD, 1971) and a doctor of science (honoris causa) from the University of the South (conferred 1995). In 1970, he discovered Gatecliff Shelter (Nevada), the deepest archaeological rockshelter in the Americas. Thomas also discovered and systematically excavated the sixteenthand seventeenth-century Franciscan mission Santa Catalina de Guale (St. Catherines Island, Georgia). In recognition of this research, Thomas received the Franciscan Institute Medal for 1992; he is the only non-Franciscan ever to be so honored. Since 1998, he has led excavations at Mission San Marcos near Santa Fe, New Mexico.

Thomas has written thirty books, edited ninety additional volumes, and written more than one hundred scientific papers. His most recent book is the best-selling Skull Wars: Kennewick Man, Archaeology, and the Battle for Native American Identity (Basic Books, 2000, 2001). A member of the Writer’s Guild of America, he wrote the first six chapters for the award-winning The Native Americans (Turner Publishing), the book accompanying the documentary The Native Americans: Behind the Legends, Beyond the Myths produced by Turner Broadcasting. Thomas is listed in Who’s Who in America, Who’s Who in Social Science, Who’s Who of American Writers, International Who’s Who of Professionals, Who’s Who Reference Encyclopedia of the American Indian, International Authors and Writers Who’s Who, and The Writers Directory. Thomas served as the U.S. editor for The Illustrated History of Humankind, a trailblazing five-volume set (Harper, San Francisco). Publishers Weekly called the first volume of The Illustrated History “a stunning achievement and a book

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