Archeologist to Lecture at UM on Thor Heyerdahl’s Life and ‘Kon-Tiki”

April 04, 2014

MISSOULA – The University of Montana’s Department of Anthropology and the Montana Museum of Art & Culture will host a lecture by Donald Ryan about the life of world-renowned Norwegian explorer, archaeologist and writer Thor Heyerdahl and Kon Tiki – a raft he used to traverse the Pacific Ocean. The lecture, which will provide an overview of Heyerdahl’s contributions as a global citizen and environmental activist, is slated for 7 p.m. Thursday, April 10, in Gallagher Business Building Room 106.

Ryan is an archaeologist and Faculty Fellow in the Division of Humanities at Pacific Lutheran University in Tacoma, Wash., a research associate at the Kon-Tiki Museum in Oslo, Norway, and a Fellow of both The Explorers Club and The Royal Geographical Society.

For several years, Ryan worked closely with the late Heyerdahl, whose open-minded approach to the topic of early human use of the ocean was a hallmark of his research, and who is recognized as one of the great explorers of the 20th century. His bold expeditions, including the famous Kon-Tiki experiment, often caused controversy within the scientific community, and his books inspired a sense of adventure for millions of readers.

The University of Montana’s Department of Anthropology is celebrating April as Montana Archaeology Month by presenting lectures on the remarkable historic and prehistoric past.






Contact: Kelly Dixon, associate professor, UM Department of Anthropology, 406-243-2450,; Barbara Koostra, director, Montana Museum of Art & Culture, 406-243-2020,