Central American archaeology may not be the first thing that comes to mind when you think of AAS, but check out this Facebook post from the Getty Research Institute about a new book called Past Presented: Archaeological Illustration and the Americas, edited by their Director of Scholarly Programs. The post features a photograph of AAS member Augustus Le Plongeon at work in Uxmal, an ancient Mayan City.
Augustus and his wife Alice Dixon Le Plongeon were, according to the post, “among the first to systematically photograph Maya sites.” Augustus was elected to AAS membership in 1878 and the couple’s work was featured prominently in the AAS Proceedings between 1877 and 1879. Stephen Salisbury III, AAS president during this period, had a strong interest in Central American history and archaeology and corresponded with Augustus as well as other scholars and archaeologists working in Central America. The AAS collection holds this correspondence in the Salisbury Family Papers manuscript collection (boxes 52 and 53).