Kenneth Murray (archaeologist)

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Kenneth Murray
Born 1903
Died 21 April 1972
Nationality English
Occupation Archaeologist

Kenneth C. Murray (1903 – 21 April 1972) was an English archaeologist and teacher.

The second son of the chess historian H. J. R. Murray and his suffragette wife, Murray was an elder brother of educationalist and biographer Betty Murray, and a grandson of Sir James Murray, editor of the Oxford English Dictionary.[1]

He left Balliol College, Oxford without a degree in order to study art. He left for Nigeria in 1927 and worked there as an art teacher. One of his students was Ben Enwonwu. Prompted by the discovery of Nok Head artefacts during tin mining, on 28 July 1943, Murray became Nigeria's first surveyor of antiquities in the newly created Nigeria Antiquities Service (which became the Nigerian National Commission for Museums and Monuments in 1979). During his tenure as the director of the Department of Antiquities of the colonial administration he founded the Nigerian Museum in Lagos in 1957. He was succeeded as Director by Bernard Fagg.

Having spent the majority of his adult life in Nigeria, Kenneth Murray died there on 21 April 1972.[2]


  1. ^ Brewer, Charlotte. "Katherine Maud Elisabeth Murray (1909-98)". Examining the OED. Hertford College, Oxford: Charlotte Brewer. Retrieved 30 May 2011. 
  2. ^