Private property, public archaeology: resident communities as stakeholders in American archaeology

Bibliographic Information

Article Title

Private property, public archaeology: resident communities as stakeholders in American archaeology

Journal Title

World Archaeology

Author(s)

Wright, Alice P.

Year of Publication

2015

Volume Number

47

Issue Number

2

Article Pages

212-224

Web Address (URL)

http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/00438243.2015.1025911

Additional Information

Available Through

Taylor & Francis Online

Language

English

Notes

Abstract: In the United States, archaeological sites on private lands have few legal protections, and are thus at risk of damage or destruction. To alleviate these risks, archaeologists must engage thoughtfully with private property owners and develop strategies to promote site stewardship. In this article, I identify the resident community – those people who live on archaeological sites, regardless of their ancestral ties to those sites – as an important stakeholder in archaeology. Based on recent fieldwork experiences on a privately owned site in the south-eastern US, I discuss the unique challenges of engaging a resident community in archaeological research, and the potential of such engagement for fostering archaeological stewardship. Specifically, I use theories of place attachment derived from environmental psychology to explore how resident communities may be encouraged to empathize with and protect the archaeological records of past people.

Additional tags: private property; archaeological site preservation; resident communities

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