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The NEW Home Page for Skelastic III / University of Pennsylvania Museum Casting Program is

Please update your bookmarks.


Visit the new website for Surviving: The Body of Evidence at






Janet M. Monge

  • Keeper of Physical Anthropology
  • Associate Director and Manager, Casting Program, University of Pennsylvania Museum
  • Adjunct Associate Professor, Department of Anthropology, University of Pennsylvania

Recent Projects

As co-curator, with Dr. Alan Mann, of the Museum's forthcoming traveling exhibition, "Surviving:  The Body of Evidence," I have been active in meeting with the exhibition planning and development team.  The project is funded by the largest exhibition grant ever awarded to The University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology: a three year, $1.7 million continuing grant from the National Science Foundation. The 3,000-square-foot exhibition will explore the process and consequences of human evolution in the context of its implications for our daily lives by using hands-on interactive devices, flexible exhibit designs with multimedia capabilities, and interactive "Web-chats" with an open community of scholars. It is scheduled to premiere at the Penn Museum in 2007, before traveling for three years to nine widely distributed institutions, ultimately serving a national audience of several million viewers.

I continue as Associate Director and Manager of the Casting Program (a non-profit small business venture with world-wide sales distribution to museums and universities for research and teaching) that stores over 3000 molds and casts representing every phase of human evolution.  During the summer of 2004, I traveled to France to mold the newest Neandertal fossils excavated to add to this expanding collection. 

With American Section curator (and former Museum director) Dr. Jeremy Sabloff, I received a prestigious National Science Foundation grant for the "Native Voices: Past and Present - University of Pennsylvania Research Experience for Undergraduates" project, which will enable us to work with Native American college students on collections here at the Penn Museum. Six students arrived in the Spring semester 2005 and joined the undergraduate student ranks taking a full series of classes. Each of the Native students partnered with a Penn undergraduate student in this research endeavor.  The project will extend for 3 years (2005-2008).

In 2002-2003, I concentrated on the establishment of a virtual archive of CT scans of many of the major skeletal collections at the Museum.  This work was done in collaboration with P.T. Schoenemann (Department of Anthropology) and with the assistance of the Department of Radiology at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania.  The research project was funded by a grant from the University Research Council.  To date, over 200 skulls, primarily from the Morton Collection of Crania (dated from circa 1830), have been scanned. In addition, many of the Museum's primate collections are part of the archived CT scans and arrangements have been made to scan 25 chimpanzee skulls curated at the American Museum of Natural History, New York.  All of these materials will be available for all interested scholars worldwide to download and study as part of their own research projects. A web site for the dissemination of the data is currently being constructed and is available at  Preliminary results of this endeavor have been presented at several professional meetings.  My own research interest in the project stems from the use of the scans for comparative purposes to the study of Human Evolution, specifically in the understanding of the cranial-facial morphology and dentition of Neandertals.




Casting Program

Penn Modern Primate and Human CT Database

Native American REU (Research Experience for Undergraduates) Project

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© 2005 Janet M. Monge.  All rights reserved.