June 2, 2004 by

Evon Vogt

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Categories: Education, Medicine, Scientists, Writers/Editors

Evon Zartman Vogt Jr. studied the modern-day Maya Indians of Chiapas, Mexico for 40 years.
To immerse himself in the Maya culture, Vogt spent part of every year living in a small Mexican village with no running water. The anthropologist learned the local dialect and over time, became a leading authority of the indigenous tribe. He wrote 19 books and received numerous honors, including the Order of the Aztec Eagle, the highest award the Mexican government bestows on foreigners.
For an academic, Vogt lived an adventurous life. To pay for his education at the University of Chicago, the Gallup, N.M., native worked in the gold mines of Nevada and as a U.S. Forest Service ranger. During World War II, he served as a combat intelligence officer in the Navy. He also did research on the Navajo soldiers used by the military as “code talkers” in the South Pacific theatre.
After the war, Vogt returned to the University of Chicago, where he earned his master’s and doctoral degrees in anthropology. In 1948, he joined the faculty of Harvard University. By the time he retired four decades later, Vogt had held a variety of positions, including chairman, in the school’s anthropology department.
Vogt died on May 13 of pulmonary fibrosis. He was 85.

One Response to Evon Vogt

  1. Bethel Bilezikian Charkoudian

    Prof. Vogt taught the section on THE NAVAJO in our Soc Rel 10 class at Harvard Unviersity in 1958 while Prof. Kluckohn was on a leave of absence. He was a sweet and wonderful man and will always be remembered as such.

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