Haffenreffer Museum of Anthropology

Circumpolar Laboratory

Archaeological Research Facility for the Circumpolar North.

The Circumpolar Laboratory (CPL) is an interdisciplinary research facility focused around projects and archaeological collections from many locations in the circumpolar north, including the United States, Sweden, Finland, Russia, Canada, Iceland, and Denmark. 

The CPL serves as a repository for archaeological collections made on federal lands in northwest Alaska. Two of these sites, Onion Portage and Cape Krusenstern are regarded as the most complete series of archaeological materials from the interior and coastal regions of the North American Arctic, respectively. The collections span ca. 13,000 years of life in Northwest Alaska, and represent the rich heritage of Indigenous Alaskans. These site complexes are in the traditional territories of the Inupiat, who have lived in those lands for time immemorial. 

As a steward of this collection, the CPL seeks to be an enthusiastic partner with the Inupiat, the National Park Service, the U.S. Bureau of Land Management, Brown University, researchers and interested people from other institutions. Anyone is welcome to utilize the federal collections for their own research.