The R.B. Aker Collection As a boy growing up in Parkville, Missouri (a town just north of Kansas City in Platte County), R.B. Aker developed an interest in prehistoric Indian artifacts that he found in nearby farm fields. His interest grew over the years and he began to record the locations of archaeological sites, collect materials from the surfaces of recently plowed fields, and assist professionals from the Smithsonian Institution, the University of Missouri and the University of Kansas in excavations.
Mr. Aker’s persistence in learning professional standards and his diligence in collecting from the same site over a period of years, even during construction activities that subsequently destroyed the site, resulted in the accumulation of a sizeable and well documented collection from over 50 archaeological sites representative of 10,000 years of human occupation. Most of the artifacts were collected from sites recorded within an area about one mile wide and about 35 miles long on the east side of the Missouri River from Parkville to St. Joseph, Missouri. In 1988, Mr. Aker donated his extensive collection to the University of Kansas.