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SIUE has a rich history of scholarship in Native American studies. Dr. Fred Voget, founder of the SIUE Anthropology Department, studied among the Crow, Osage, Wind River Shoshone, Cheyenne, Blackfeet, Flathead, Mohawks, and Iroquois; but he was best known as known as an ethnologist of the Crow. Dr. Voget and his wife Mary Kay met while teaching on the Crow reservation, and Fred was ultimately adopted by the Crow Tribe. In his academic career, Emeritus Professor of Anthropology Dr. Ernest Schusky's research included ethnohistory of the Sioux. Dr. Schusky has turned to fiction writing in his retirement, having recently published novels about ancient Cahokia as well as Native Americans of the Southwest.

Dr. Charlotte Frisbie, Emerita Professor of Anthropology, is the author of multiple books and an internationally acclaimed scholar of Navajo studies. Dr. Theodore Frisbie, also Emeritus Professor of the Anthropology Department, conducted research on the archaeology of the Southwest throughout his career and is currently completing his "magnum opus" on Chaco culture. Emeritus Professor of Anthropology Dr. Sidney Denny conducted research on the archaeology of the Cahokia area, and Dr. William Woods also conducted pioneering research on Cahokia while a member of SIUE's Department of Geography.
Dr. Ted Frisbie, c. 1989