Renowned Researcher to Speak in Missoula to Commemorate Anniversary of King Tut’s Tomb Discovery

October 23, 2017

MISSOULA – Ninety-five years after the 1922 discovery in the Valley of the Kings, Egypt's ancient royal cemetery, the tomb of the young pharaoh, Tutankhamun, is still considered by many to be the greatest archaeological discovery of all time. Despite its fame, many intriguing questions remain about the tomb and its occupant. 

Donald Ryan, an archaeologist and faculty Fellow in the Division of Humanities at Pacific Lutheran University, will present the lecture “King Tut and His Fabulous Tomb: History, Mystery and Controversy” at 7 p.m. Friday, Oct. 27, at the Roxy Theater, located at 718 S. Higgins Ave.

Under Ryan’s guidance, the PLU Valley of the Kings Project has examined and documented several smaller, “lost” tombs and controversial mummies found in the Valley of the Kings, not far from Tut’s tomb. Recently, the PLU project focused on three curious tombs which when first encountered in 1906 were found to contain the mummies of animals, including monkeys and a dog. The exact locations of these tombs were subsequently lost.

Ryan will give a second lecture while in Missoula titled “Monkeys in the Valley of the Kings: The Search for Three Unusual Tombs in Egypt’s Ancient Royal Cemetery,” at 6 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 26, in Don Anderson Hall at the University of Montana. He will discuss what his recent research has revealed about these enigmatic burials.

Both events are free and open to the public. UM’s Department of Anthropology and the Montana Museum of Art & Culture are co-hosting Ryan’s visit.

Ryan has led many expeditions and is the author of several books and numerous scientific and popular articles on archaeological subjects. His work and expertise have been featured in several television documentaries.

For more information on Ryan, visit


Contact: Kelly Dixon, UM anthropology professor, 612-247-6414 (cell),