Summer 2021 Maine Archaeology Field School


University of Maine Catalog Description

ANT 477 – Field Research in Archaeology

Introduction to archaeological field techniques through excavation of an archaeological site. Intensive training in site survey, excavation techniques, recording, analysis and preliminary interpretation of archaeological materials. Admission is by application only.

General Information and Goals of the Course

The Anthropology Department at the University of Maine offers a Maine archaeology field school biennially (every other year). The field school is directed by Dr. Bonnie Newsom and is funded by a prestigious MAPI (Maine Academic Prominence Initiative) grant. Wabanaki community engagement is an integral part of the Maine archaeology field school.

Course Goals:

  • Develop in students an awareness of the richness of Wabanaki heritage and Maine’s history through a multi-vocal perspective that blends archaeology with Indigenous knowledges.
  • Provide training in archaeological field methods, excavation techniques and strategies, and archaeological professionalism through experiential learning.
  • Convey to students the value of Indigenous archaeology sites as important cultural and paleoenvironmental resources with relevance to contemporary issues and communities.
  • Develop in students an understanding of Indigenous archaeologies theory and methodologies.

Research Design:

The Maine archaeology field school is approached using an Indigenous archaeologies framework.  Indigenous archaeologies are archaeology projects conducted in support of Indigenous values and agendas. In addition to conventional archaeological field techniques, the course also includes a variety of experiential learning activities that may include Wabanaki language learning, visits to local museums and heritage places, and experimental archaeology.

Planning for the 2021 field school is underway and will proceed during the fall 2020 semester. COVID 19 restrictions may affect our ability to offer this course. Please check back often for additional details. Applications for the 2021 field school will be available by March 15th

Petroglyph of moose
Female moose under the winter snow.
The field school is directed by Dr. Bonnie Newsom, an Assistant Professor of Anthropology at UMaine. It is funded by a prestigious MAPI (Maine Academic Prominence Initiative) grant provided by UMaine and written by the late Dr. Brian Robinson and Dr. Lisa Neuman, an Anthropology faculty member jointly appointed in Native American Studies.

MAPI funding for the field school covers participant expenses and includes 3 credits of in-state undergraduate tuition (ANT 477), room and board, and transportation to the field site. Maximum course capacity: 12 students.

Photo of the sunrise at Machias Bay
Peters GommersThe sun has come up over a foggy Machias Bay. The sunlight reflects on the face of the rock where the petroglyphs are. The tide has just fallen, leaving the rock shiny