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Bill_BassDuring his fifty-year career as an anthropologist, Professor Emeritus William M. Bass excavated ancient skeletons and recovered the remains of murder victims. He also headed UT’s anthropology department for more than twenty years and trained many of the nation’s current leading forensic anthropologists.

The University of Tennessee Libraries will honor Bass and celebrate the Dr. William M. Bass III Collection during a reception and lecture on Thursday, October 30, at John C. Hodges Library.

The public is invited to the reception, which begins at 5:30 p.m. in the Jack E. Reese Galleria. A 6:30 p.m. lecture by Bass will follow in the Lindsay Young Auditorium. Guests also may visit Special Collections to view items from the Dr. William M. Bass III Collection.

The UT Libraries holds the research and teaching materials documenting Bass’s career.

Bass is perhaps best known as the creator of the “Body Farm”—officially the Anthropology Research Facility. The Body Farm was the world’s first laboratory for researching the processes and timetable of decomposition of human remains.

Bass has recounted the story of the Body Farm to many audiences. His talk at the UT library will focus on his more traditional pursuits in the field of anthropology, including excavating human skeletal remains in the Great Plains in cooperation with the Smithsonian Institution. His field study notebooks from these excavations are among the materials Bass donated to the UT Libraries to create the Dr. William M. Bass III Collection.

For information about parking for the event, visit the library’s website.



Lola Alapo (865-974-3993,

Erin Horeni-Ogle (865-974-0055,

Alesha Shumar (865-974-4480,