The American Ethnological Society is the oldest professional anthropological organization in the United States. Founded in 1842 to encourage emerging anthropological research on human cultures.

Ethnology is the study and comparison of human cultures.

Today the AES, a section of the American Anthropological Association (AAA), is a thriving group of over 1,000 anthropologists who organize an annual meeting, publish the journal American Ethnologist, and produce engaging web content to promote scholarship and bring anthropology to a wider audience.

The emblem of the American Ethnological Society (left) is taken from the design of a silver medallion that was previously presented to winners of the AES’s Elsie Clews Parson prize, awarded annually for student papers. The medallions had been made by Emory Sekaquaptewa of Hopi Crafts, Arizona, utilizing a spider symbol common to Hopi pottery design.