Biographies of Objects

Join us for conversations with two highly sought after Indigenous authors: 

David A. Robertson, an award-winning author of numerous books for children, YA and adults, and a member of Norway House Cree Nation. David has long been an advocate for educating youth on Indigenous history and contemporary issues.

David Robertson: More information, Buy Books or Register for 7th June

Jesse Thistle, a Métis-Cree and Assistant Professor at York University in Toronto, where he is  working on theories of intergenerational and historic trauma of the Métis people. His award-winning memoir, From the Ashes, is a #1 national bestseller in Canada.

Jesse Thistle: More information, Buy Books or Register for 21st June

These events continue the series Creative Conversations with indigenous Canada, organised in partnership with the University of Glasgow's Creative Writing Programme.

The Project

Among the many holdings of The Hunterian collections can be found items such as a pair of mittens from the Huron-Wendat from the Great Lakes region in North America and a parka from the Inuit from Baffin Island, Canada. The online catalogue provides us with information regarding the objects’ materials and their possible geographical origins. However, it does not provide us with any information of their makers or who brought them to The Hunterian. The catalogue leaves the following questions unanswered: Who made the objects and why? How did they come the long way from North America to Scotland? Who brought these objects to Scotland and why?

This project will explore the histories of Indigenous objects from North America and the changing stories and narratives of objects from the past to the present. Many objects came to Scotland in the nineteenth century. I will analyse the British perceptions of North American Indigenous peoples during the nineteenth century. This project will further examine how museums deal with the colonial past and acquirement of Indigenous objects. In addition, it will demonstrate how contemporary museum practices are changing and begin to include Indigenous viewpoints and de-centring Eurocentric views.

Past Events

If you missed or want to re-visit our fantastic event with Dr Renae Watchman (Mount Royal University) on Indigenous literary arts, you'll love this blog from American Studies at Glasgow.

Browse the collections

The following links allow you to browse the records of the Indigenous Collections at The Hunterian

Inuit Objects

Objects from the Wendat

Objects from the Dine: GLAHM:112366 & GLAHM:112367

Objects from the Tlingit


Follow the project on Twitter: @HAP_ObjectBios

Alexandra Abletshauser, Doctoral Candidate in Canadian Literature.
Alexandra is working on Canadian prose writing from 1880 to 1914. She explores how English-Canadian and French-Canadian women writers used to emotions to engage in contemporary discussions on social and political issues.



Mittens - GLAHM:E.105, mitten, Huron-Wendat
Parka - GLAHM:E.1984.5/1, parka, Inuit