Bryan Gordon


Curator Emeritus, Research Division


Canadian Museum of Civilization

bryan.gordon [at]


100 Laurier Street
Ottawa, ON J8X 4H2

Brief Biography

Gordon's research interests include arctic and sub-arctic archaeology; the relationships between ancient reindeer, caribou, and bison followers and their herds. For 7 years he has been heading a project of about 87 correspondents involving a whole new look at Early Palaeoindian 1st peoples of eastern North America who hunted caribou, not megafauna. This project presents a deglaciation model of change in climate, herd ranges and hunting territories. toolstone sources and fluted points .

Gordon earned a B.Sc. degree in biology and chemistry from the University of British Columbia, a B.A. in anthropology from the University of Washington, and a Ph.D. in archaeology from the University of Calgary. From 1972-1976, he was Arctic Archaeologist at the National Museum of Man, from 1977-1998 Curator of Arctic Archaeology (Keewatin) at the then Canadian Museum of Civilization, and from 1999 on as Curator Emeritus at the (now) Canadian Museum of History, maintaining an office with students. He is a Fellow of the Arctic Institute of North America, and has been an Adjunct Professor in the Department of Sociology and Anthropology at Carleton University for many years. He speaks some Russian, French, and Spanish, has three years of training in Mandarin, and 2 years of Arabic. He had hoped his training in Chinese, Russian, and Arabic would allow him to explore aspects of the pre-Silk Road in Central Asia but other projects got in the way. For the past several years he has been applying his rock art dating methods in several countries ( and ResearchGate,net) His Carleton website is

Gordon is interested in speaking to academic audiences, graduate seminars, and the general public. His public speaking experience includes lecturing at many professional meetings, some schools, and guiding tourists in the north. Representative lecture titles include:

People and Rangifer: An Ancient Bond

Barrenland Archaeology

Herd Followers in Ice-Age France and Mesolithic Russia

Rise of Chinese Civilization

Solving Palimpsest Problems in Archaeological Site

Dating and revealing poorly preserved rock art.

Science Specialties

archaeology, caribou, human/environment interaction.

Current Research

From my arctic experience I'm now working on Early Palaeoindian caribou hunters of eastern North America following the herds during deglaciation from Mississippi through a continuous line of States and Provinces (all with caribou remains) to northern Labrador.