scholar who made significant contributions towards the study of the
in the early 20th century. He is particularly noted for his extensive excavations of the Maya site of
. He also published several large compilations and treatises on
Maya hieroglyphic writing
, and wrote popular accounts on the Maya for a general audience. To his contemporaries he was one of the leading
archaeologists of his day; although more recent developments in the field have resulted in a re-evaluation of his theories and works, his publications (particularly on
inscriptions) are still cited. Overall, his commitment and enthusiasm for Maya studies would generate the interest and win the necessary sponsorship and backing to finance projects which would ultimately reveal much about the Maya of former times. In his role as director of various projects sponsored by the Carnegie Institution, he oversaw and encouraged many others who later established notable careers in their own right. His involvement in clandestine
activities at the behest of the U.S.
Office of Naval Intelligence
was another, surprising, aspect of his career, which came to light only well after his death.