THe Lone Apsara

THe Lone Apsara

Sunday, April 17, 2011

My Uncle George Reisner

The reason for this post is to just show some interesting information on my mother's family. When I was little I would look at some very old photos of my great grand parents with a Mary and George Reisner. This was before I got into genealogy. Later in life I would still look at this photo and wonder who they were. Then one day I found out about Author Elizabeth Peters and her character who was an archeologist Amelia Peabody. I was hooked and read everything by that author and devoured that series. I even wrote to the author and she was always gracious enough to answer me.
Then one day I received a email while living in Cambodia. It was from the current director of the Giza project at The Museum of Fine Arts in Boston and wondering if I was related to Walter Talcott Bronson since they found my name on a genealogy site? I wrote back and said "Yes, that was my grandfather."
They wrote back and said guess what, you are the niece to George Reisner, by marriage, but his niece non the less. His wife was my grandfather's only sister. She spent part her life in Germany but most of it in Egypt with her husband. Then it dawned on me the old photo... I can tell you I was doing a happy dance. I then wrote right away to Author Elizabeth Peters who I knew would enjoy hearing this. It was like winning the mega bucks lottery. He had been one of two of the most well known, respected and loved archeologist of his day.
Why did I put this article here? Because of him I have my main female character in my book as an archeologist and the grand niece to him, though her name is Anna Oldenburg. Oldenburg is from the other side of my mother's family .So it's kinda like 'all roads lead to Rome'. GIZA LIBRARY

George Andrew Reisner

Birth: Indianapolis, Indiana, November 5, 1867
Death: Giza, Egypt, June 6, 1942
One of the most prominent founding fathers of modern scientific archaeology, Egyptologist George Andrew Reisner was born in Indianapolis in 1867 to a German-American family originally from Worms. Reisner eventually made his way east to Harvard University for his B.A. (1889), M.A. (1891), and Ph.D. (1893) degrees. In 1893, one year after his marriage to Mary Bronson, he became a Travelling Fellow of Harvard and left for Berlin to study first Semitics and then ancient Egyptian under Adolf Erman and Kurt Sethe. Reisner returned to Harvard in 1896, where he obtained a post as Instructor in Semitics.

George Reisner, from The Rotarian
49, no. 1 (July 1936), p. 23
(Photo by Bob Davis of the
New York Sun); June 26, 1933
In 1897 he spent a year in Cairo working on the Catalogue Général Project for the Egyptian Museum, then received five years' funding for excavation from California-based Mrs. Phoebe Apperson Hearst, mother of the well-known newspaper publisher W. R. Hearst. Reisner concentrated on the great cemeteries of Naga ed-Deir, as well as the sites of Quft and Deir el-Ballas. He applied the methodical approach he had learned in Berlin to his excavation techniques, and began to develop a unique working system. He emphasized field photography as a fundamental element of the archaeological process, and established a wide range of expedition record books and numbering systems. Reisner attained his most important site concession in 1902: the Old Kingdom cemeteries surrounding the three great pyramids of Giza. From 1905 on, his expedition was supported by Harvard University and the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. By 1910 he was or had been Archaeological Director of the Nubian Archaeological Survey by the Egyptian Government (1907–9), Director of the Harvard Excavations at Samaria, Palestine (1909–10), assistant Professor of Semitic Archaeology (1905–10), Director of the Harvard–Boston Egyptian Expedition, Professor of Egyptology at Harvard University, and Curator of the Egyptian Department of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston.

Arthur Merton (London Times), Alfred Lucas, George Reisner, Dows Dunham, and Noel F. Wheeler, outside the magazine for G 7000 X, Hetepheres I; April 11, 1927 (B6205)

(Peter Der Manuelian)

This first photo was him on a work site there in the shadow of the pyramids at Giza.

The middle shot is of Uncle George Reisner with his wife seated next to him, The Princess Ileana of Romania, Queen Maria of Romania and their daughter Miss Mary Reisner.

The bottom photo is of him at his 70th Birthday celebration with friends, workers and family. My Grandfather's sister who was married to George is seated to his right with white shoes, Mary Bronson Reisner. Their daughter Miss Mary Reisner is to his left.

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