The Life and Paradoxical Leadership of Archaeologist William S. Webb

Douglas W. Schwartz, President Emeritus and Senior Scholar, SAR

Colloquium, SAR Boardroom

Wednesday, November 28, 2012, 12:00–1:00 pm, Free

To initiate the Depression-motivated Tennessee Valley Authority archaeology program, one of the world’s largest archaeological projects ever undertaken, a strong leader of this vast enterprise was required. After a search of available talent, the government officials chose W. S. Webb, a professor of physics at the University of Kentucky who had done some archaeological survey work. The choice of Webb for this important position said a great deal about the status of Southeastern archaeology at the time and of Webb’s unusual professional development. Considering the course of his life and his administrative success raises issues regarding what constitutes good leadership.