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Special Collections and University Archives

Finding Aid

June Helm Papers
RG 99.0018
Collection Dates: 1941-2002
1.5 ft.

Access and Restrictions: This collection is open for research.

Digital Surrogates: Except where indicated, this document describes but does not reproduce the actual text, images and objects which make up this collection. Materials are available only in the Special Collections Department.

Copyright: Please read The University of Iowa Libraries' statement on Property Rights, Copyright Law, and Permissions to Use Unpublished Materials.

Use of Collections: The University of Iowa Libraries supports access to the materials, published and unpublished, in its collections. Nonetheless, access to some items may be restricted by their fragile condition or by contractual agreement with donors, and it may not be possible at all times to provide appropriate machinery for reading, viewing or accessing non-paper-based materials. Please read our Use of Manuscripts Statement.

Acquisition and Processing Information: These materials were donated to the University Archives by Pierce King in July 2004. Guide created by Denise Anderson, August 2007.

Photographs: None

Portrait of June Helm, University of Iowa Dept. of Anthropology, 1985.

June Helm, 1985

Scope and Contents

These papers relate to the professional research and teaching of professor June Helm while on the faculty of the University of Iowa between 1960 and 1999.  Series include professional correspondence, speeches, biographical material, awards, drafts, an unpublished manuscript, manuscript notes, reviews, and committee work.  These papers are not organized within series.  A collection inventory in box one, folder one, provides additional detail.

Biographical Note

June Helm was born in Twin Falls, Idaho, September 13, 1924.  Her family moved to Kansas when she was six years old.  She attended the University of Kansas City, and transferred to the University of Chicago, earning her Ph.B. in 1944, M.A. in 1949, and Ph.D. in 1958.  Helm married Richard MacNeish in 1945, and the couple moved to Ottawa, Canada in 1949.  Her research there along the Mackenzie River became the basis of her Ph.D. thesis at the University of Chicago.

According to the University of Iowa Press, Dr. Helm served as president of the American Anthropological Association and adviser to the Indian Brotherhood.  She served as consultant to Canada's Mackenzie Valley Pipeline Inquiry.

Helm joined the faculty at the University of Iowa in 1960 as assistant professor of Sociology and Anthropology, and was promoted to full professor in 1966.  Helm worked to establish the Department of Anthropology at the University of Iowa in 1969.  She married Pierce King in 1968.  She was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in March 1994.  At the time of this award, Dr. Helm was head of American Indian and Native Studies at the University of Iowa.  She retired in 1999.  June Helm died February 5, 2004.

[D. Anderson; 08/2007]

Related Materials

Folder, "Helm, June," Faculty and Staff Vertical Files collection (RG 01.15.03)

Records of the Department of Anthropology and Archaeology (RG06.06.01)

Records of the Department of Geoscience (RG06.15)

Papers of Marshall B. McKusick (RG99.028)

Papers of Vilhjalmur Stefansson (RG99.0013)

Helm, June. The People of Denendeh: Ethnohistory of the Indians of Canada's Northwest Territories. Iowa City, Iowa: University of Iowa Press, 2000.

Box Contents List

Box 1

Collection inventory


Box 2

Correspondence (regarding Vilhjalmur Stefansson biography, folder 22)


---. University of Iowa Presidential Lecture, February 3, 1987

---. University of Iowa convocation, May 16, 1985

---. American Academy of Arts and Sciences, president's address, 1985


---. Iowa Alumni Quarterly, Fall 1996

---. Education

---. Employment


---. American Academy of Arts and Sciences Fellow, March 9, 1994

---. Faculty Excellence, July 18, 1995

---. Appointment as F. Wendell Miller Distinguished Professor of Anthropology, 1996

---. June Helm Award for Service and Excellence in Anthropology, 2000

Box 3


Manuscript, "Woman," unpublished

Manuscript notes, International Conference on Hunter-Gatherers


Committee work, Centennial Executive and Advisory Committee, 2002