- IU Bloomington
Since 1966 I have been at the Smithsonian Institution (SI), in Washington, D.C. working first in the anthropology archives and then as Anthropologist/Illustrations Researcher for the Handbook of North American Indians. I selected and wrote captions for non-artifact images in 14 of 15 volumes of the Handbook. As a result of my research I collected over 100,000 historical and contemporary photographs of Native Americans. These photographs are currently in the SI National Anthropological Archives, with the Handbook Papers. I retired in 2006, becoming a Research Associate.
Since 1986 I have been a member of the Society for Visual Anthropology, a unit of the American Anthropological Association, during 1986-2007 Board of Directors, 1991-1993 President, and 2010-2021 Historian.
Hunter College, City University of New York; M.A. Anthropology, 1968
Syracuse University, Syracuse, New York; B.A. Anthropology 1963.
2013 Life among the Indians: First Fieldwork among the Sioux and Omahas by Alice C. Fletcher. Edited and with an Introduction by Joanna C. Scherer and Raymond J. DeMallie. University of Nebraska Press.
2008 Edward Sheriff Curtis. Phaidon Press, London.
2006 A Danish Photographer of Idaho Indians: Benedicte Wrensted, University of Oklahoma Press, Norman. Awarded Idaho Book of the Year (2006) by the Idaho Library Association; Secretary’s Research Prize, Smithsonian Institution, 2008; and Collier Prize for Still Photography Research, Society for Visual Anthropology, 2008.
2017 Benedicte Wrensted: An Idaho Photographer in Focus. https://aisri.indiana.edu/scherer/Wrensted/ (accessed 3/1/21)
2017 Red Cloud’s Manikin and His Uncle’s Shirt: Historical Representation in the Museum as seen through photo analysis. https://aisri.indiana.edu/scherer/RedCloud/ (accessed 3/1/21)
2016 W.H. Boorne’s Photos of the Medicine Lodge Ceremony: The construction of an Icon. https://aisri.indiana.edu/scherer/Boorne/ (accessed 3/1/21)
2012 A Preponderance of Evidence: The 1852 Omaha Indian Delegation Daguerreotypes Recovered. American Indian Studies Research Institute at Indiana University, Bloomington. Web site: https://aisri.indiana.edu/scherer/Preponderance/ (accessed 3/1/21)