Demitri Boris Shimkin was a professor of Anthropology and Geography at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (1960-1985). He completed his Bachelor's degree in Anthropology in 1936 and in 1939 received a Ph.D. in Anthropology, both from the University of California at Berkeley. Shimkin served in the U.S. Army on the War Department General Staff, the Military Intelligence Division (1941-1947) and he taught at the National War College, the Army War College and the Navy War College (1946-1947). Shimkin worked as a Research Associate at Harvard University's Russian Research Center (1948-1953). He also served as a Social Science Analyst to the U.S. Bureau of the Census (1953-1960). Professor Shimkin primarily researched diverse groups in Russia, Siberia, the Americas, and Africa. He served as an American Anthropological Association Representative for the National Research Council (1964-1967). Additionally, he was a Senior Fulbright Lecturer at Kemerovo State University (Soviet Union, 1984), and a Fellow for the Center for Advanced Study in Behavioral Sciences at Stanford University (1970-1971). After his retirement in 1985, he was a Professor Emeritus of Anthropology at UIUC.
Papers includes personal materials, correspondence, meeting minutes, publications, speeches, course materials, student recommendations, manuscripts, research notes and proposals, reports, reprints, maps, photos, computer data tape, and audiotapes; his research and scholarly ties with the Soviet Union and Siberia; African-Americans, Native Americans (Shoshone); military service activities, including teaching and consulting for the U. S. Army War College, the National War College, and the Industrial College of the Armed Forces. The collection includes notes, papers and publications of Edith Shimkin, and Helen Tauby Shimkin. Also included is a guide to Demitri B. Shimkin papers at the University of Wyoming. The additional Holmes County Health Research Program materials from the March 2016 accession are restricted for use until.
Materials sent to the archives in 1990s were organized by subject and chronological or alphabetically thereunder. The final accession from March 2016 is organized into three series (boxes 33-44): Series 1, Personal Materials, 1937-2001, arranged chronologically with one undated item listed at the beginning of the series; Series 2, Research Materials, 1956-1992, organized into two groups: research materials, arranged alphabetically, and Holmes County Health Research Program, arranged by report cards, interview surveys, and statistical analysis printouts; and Series 3: Publications, 1938-1993, arranged chronologically with undated publications listed at the beginning of the series.