Sheila J. McNally

After an extensive and rewarding career in academic scholarship, Professor McNally passed peacefully at the University of Minnesota Hospitals on 25 September. Sheila leaves a wide circle of dedicated friends, colleagues, students and acquaintances. They will miss her dearly. Pursuing a broad range of interests in the arts, she was an unrelenting traveler, worldwide, but concentrating on the Roman Mediterranean. Dr. McNally's academic preparations included Vassar College, Radcliffe College, and Harvard University where she received her Ph.D. in Art History. She served on the faculties at Mt. Holyoke College and The University of Ohio. To our benefit in Minnesota, Sheila arrived in 1965, where she served for more than 40 years in the Departments of Art History and Classical and Near Eastern Studies. It was here that Sheila developed her reputation for energetic research and creative teaching methodologies, and it was here that her interest in Roman antiquities, architecture, decoration and textiles matured, along with a broader range of related subject areas spanning over 3000 years of history. Sheila's emersion into archaeology blossomed with a long-term role as director of an urban excavation, in collaboration with Jerko Marasovic at the Urban Planning Institute of Dalmatia, in Split, Croatia. The excavations lasted over six years, at a World Heritage Site, the Retirement Palace of the Roman Emperor Diocletian. These excavations generated publications and numerous articles in several categories. Another significant excavation, an ancient urban site at Akhmim, Egypt explored early structures, churches and their influence on pre-Islamic urban aggregations. Sheila's writings include: "The Architectural Ornament of Diocletian's Palace", "Shaping Communities: The Art and Archaeology of Monasticism", "The Excavation of Akhmim, Egypt", and many other research articles. Her most recent book explores the continuing influence of the Palace of Diocletian's in post-Roman urban cores. The topicality and regional diversity of Sheila's research reflects her energetic curiosity and characterizes our admiration for her intellectual contributions. Sheila is survived by Mrs. Alexandra McNally Smith of Connecticut and Family, and was the daughter of John R. McNally and Ruth T. McNally. Memorial service will be at St. Olaf Church in Minneapolis, Saturday at Ten, with burial in Fitchburg, Massachusetts. For those of us who were fortunate to have enjoyed a sustained friendship with her, we will always value the enduring qualities, intellectual strength and generous warmth which Sheila McNally offered.