The Ancient Egyptian Collection
As part of its mission of outreach and community education, as well as to support
the research and teaching missions of University of Memphis, the Institute of Egyptian
Art & Archaeology, (hereafter IEAA), maintains a collection of over fourteen hundred
ancient Egyptian antiquities. These artifacts are housed in the Art Museum of the University of Memphis. Approximately 200 of those objects, most ranging in
date from 3800 B.C.E. to 700 C.E., are on permanent exhibition in the Egyptian Gallery
of the Art Museum of the University of Memphis.
Image courtesy the Art Museum of the University of Memphis, Bryan Blankenship photographer.
History of the Collection
In 1975 a collection of forty-four (44) ancient Egyptian objects was obtained for
the University of Memphis (then Memphis State University) from the Museum of Fine
Arts in Boston through the generosity of Mr. E.H. Little, a prominent Memphis businessman.
Since that time, and mostly through the generosity of private donors, the collection
has grown steadily to its present size of over 1,400 objects. The collection spans
the entire range of ancient Egyptian history and prehistory (ca. 100,000 B.C.E. through
700 C.E.). There are mummies, religious and funerary items, jewelry, sculpture, and
objects from everyday life.
From its inception, the collection has served as an important teaching resource for
students and faculty at the University of Memphis and throughout the Mid-South region.
Students in such diverse disciplines as art, anthropology, history, classics, art
history and education make use of the collection during their coursework. As part
of the Master's Program in Egyptology at the University of Memphis, students may choose an item from the collection as
the subject of their Master's thesis. In addition, scholars from all over the world
contact the IEAA regarding objects in the collection.
Click here for additional information about the history of the IEAA.
Approximately 200 ancient Egyptian objects from the permanent collection of the IEAA
are on display in the Egyptian Gallery of the Art Museum of the University of Memphis.
The museum is open to the public, free of charge, Monday through Saturday 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
The Art Museum is closed University holidays and between temporary exhibits.
The most frequent visitors to the Egyptian Gallery are students from public and private
schools in the City of Memphis and Shelby county. School children from Mississippi
and Arkansas are also drawn to Memphis to view the ancient Egyptian collection.
Scholars and other individuals interested in obtaining access to the collection or
images of objects in the collection should contact the Director or the Curator.
For information about collection access and permission to reproduce images of collection
materials, please review the Research and Reproduction policies. The links are given
- Obtaining access to the collection
- Photographic permissions, rights and reproductions, etc.