Memorial Tributes for Dr. Richard “Doc” Daugherty

Richard Daugherty with the famous "whaling trophy" from the Ozette Site.  Source: Washington State University.

Richard Daugherty with the famous “whaling trophy” from the Ozette Site. Source: Washington State University.

Dale Croes sends along the following information: two tribute events for the late Dr. Richard Daugherty, who passed away February 22 at the age of 91. Daugherty was Professor of Archaeology at Washington State University, and is best known for two remarkable projects: the Marmes Rockshelter dig and the long-term Ozette wet site project, the latter being commonly referred to as the “Pompeii of North America” on the grounds of its incredible preservation of organic Makah material culture.

I only met Dr. Daugherty once a long time ago when I was privileged to speak about the Kilgii Gwaay wet site in Seattle, but there is an entire generation of NW Archaeologists who were his students, or were otherwise inspired or mentored by him. If you’re one of them (and count me amongst the inspired), then feel free to leave a comment below, and this can serve as an online repository of good memories and funny stories perhaps. It’s the NW Anthropology meetings starting tonight in Bellingham and I am sure there will be plenty of beer glasses clinked in his memory.  If you click “continue reading” then I’ve gathered together some of the obituaries and also the poster which Dale sent with details of the two tributes, the first of which is this coming Monday in Olympia.

Tribute events for Richard Daugherty.

Tribute events for Richard Daugherty. Poster courtesy of Dale Croes.

You can view the poster by clicking on the above – it leads to a PDF.  Among the obituaries I’ve seen are:

  • A fine one from Washington State University, which highlights his relationship with the Makah tribe – one of several examples of long-standing relationships between tribal organizations and archaeologists that were well ahead of their times.
  • The one from the Seattle Times notes in passing a previous life as a blimp pilot in WW2 – good to get that tricky item off your bucket list as soon as possible.
  • The Los Angeles Times has a tribute which also generously speaks of his efforts in promoting heritage protection laws in Washington State as well as significant national legislation for the United States as a whole.
  • The Olympian offers a more personal take, mourning a man “as treasured as the artifacts he dug.”

Dr. Daughtery is survived by Ruth Kirk, also well known to NW Archaeologists, not least for the excellent book she co-authored with Daugherty, Archaeology in Washington.  This is one of the finest introductions to NW Archaeology out there, beautifully illustrated, sensitively explained.

2 responses to “Memorial Tributes for Dr. Richard “Doc” Daugherty

  1. have you heard about the situation that arose from the drawdown of the wanapum dam on the columbia? I heard that some of the material/remains being found were thought to be the same age as the kennewick man.


  2. Pingback: Pompeiis Everywhere! | The Petrified Muse

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