August 20, 1918–May 13, 2004
BY JOYCE MARCUS
EVON ZARTMAN VOGT, JR.—“Vogtie” to his friends and countless generations of students—was a modest and unassuming scholar who nevertheless managed to transform the entire field of Maya ethnography, altering our views of both the ancient and modern Maya in the process. Vogt did so by spending 35 years among the Tzotzil Maya of Zinacantan in Chiapas, Mexico. His enormous dataset led him to generate new insights about how communities change over time while conserving and maintaining many traditions. His comprehensive analyses of Maya ritual, religion, kinship, social organization, and settlement pattern will link his name forever to Zinacantan and the Tzotzil.
Vogtie was a mentor and role model for me, and for many other students, during his 41 years of teaching at Harvard. In retirement (1989-2004) he remained generous, gregarious, gracious, and more prolific than most scholars half his age.
Vogt’s father, Evon Z. Vogt, Sr., was born into an American family of Swiss and German descent in Upper Sandusky, Ohio, in 1880. In 1892 the family moved to Dayton, Ohio. Vogt Sr. attended the University of Chicago until his senior