3D Digitization of Hominin Casts


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The Anthropology Department at Kenyon College owns a collection of old hominin plaster casts. The casts were ordered during the 1974-75 academic year from the University of Pennsylvania Museum by Professor Emeritus of Anthropology Ken Smail. The casts represent many fossil hominins from sites excavated in the first half of the 20th century that are no longer available for sale, and thus cannot be replaced. In many cases, the original fossils from which the casts were made are lost or no longer publicly available. The casts are made of plaster and are thus very fragile. As such, they remain behind glass for fear of breakage. We seek to digitize these irreplaceable casts with the ultimate goal of 3D printing them in media that students will be able to actively engage with. To broaden the value of this collection, we will also make these scans freely accessible to the global community of scholars through Digital Kenyon.