2021 TAS Archeology 101 Academy

Blended academy with virtual classroom instruction and fieldwork at San Felipe de Austin State Historic Site


Date: March 13-14, 2021 (Virtual Classroom) and March 20 *OR* 21, 2021 (Fieldwork)

Location: online and San Felipe de Austin State Historic Site

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Course Description and Details

Class instruction for this academy will be held VIRTUALLY via Zoom, with a hands-on field component scheduled to be held at San Felipe de Austin State Historic Site, located in the town of San Felipe, Texas. This academy provides background information on the archeology of the state and how to identify archeological sites, both pre-European and historic in nature.  Instructions are provided for accurate site recording that allows archeologists to assess the importance and significance of a site or sites, and contribute to the synthesis of the state’s cultural heritage.
The course’s primary goals are to provide each participant with the tools necessary to identify, properly record, and assess an archeological site.  The first step in managing archeological resources on private lands is to know the site is there, and learning something about that site.  One site, however, never tells the whole story.  It is the cumulative knowledge of the location of archeological sites in time and space that allow archeologists to piece together the larger puzzle.  A better understanding of the past 15,000+ years and better management of our archeological resources comes from understanding site locations across a broad area.


Course instructions will include basic knowledge needed 1) to identify archeological sites in various regions across the state; 2) how to properly investigate/document a site; 3) how to complete a standard TexSite survey form; 4) how to perform a test excavation if necessary; 5) how to establish horizontal and vertical controls; 6) what and how much to sample;  7) how to record provenience of artifacts recovered; 8) how to properly wash, catalogue, and inventory specimens; 9) how to sort and classify a collection; 10) how to organize the data and write a descriptive report.  Each of these topics will be covered in specific sections of this Academy. Finally, participants will have the opportunity to participate in a half day of excavations and other field investigations on the historic site of San Felipe de Austin on either Saturday or Sunday March 20 and 21, 2021 (your choice!).  


A good reference to field methods in archeology is Field Methods in Archaeology (7th edition), 1997, by Hester, Shafer, and Feder.



Lead Instructor: Dr. Jon Lohse

Principal Investigator for field excavations: Dr. Sarah Chesney



Registration deadline for the 2021 TAS Archeology 101 Academy is February 27, 2021

Registration for this academy is open to TAS members.  The registration fee for this academy is $100 and includes two days of virtual instruction and a half day of on-site field instruction.  Participants will also receive a digital course manual. A certificate of participation will be awarded to attendees. Continuing Professional Education (CPE) credit is available for teachers as approved by the Texas State Board of Education Certification (SBEC). No previous archeological experience is needed to enjoy these sessions.

Cancellations after the deadline are non-refundable. Cancellation vacancies will be filled from a waiting list.


For information about scholarship opportunities click here.

Site Information and Lodging

The Archeology 101 Academy will be held virtually via zoom on March 13-14, 2021. And participants will have the option to choose their half day of field excavations at San Felipe de Austin State Historic Site on either March 20 or 21, 2021. This will be an excellent opportunity for participants to enjoy the State Historic Site and also nearby Stephen F. Austin State Park for camping, hiking, and biking!

Lodging options available in nearby Sealy, Texas including hotels, motels, RV parks and camping, and can be found on the Sealy Convention and Visitors Bureau website: http://www.visitsealy.com/#