How to dress as an Archaeologist for Halloween

Are you considering dressing up as an archaeologist for Halloween this year? There is still time to pull together a costume, but there is more to it than a fedora and whip!

Not your standard issue archaeology uniform.


Though, this wins the award for cutest young Indiana Jones!

Cutest young Indiana Jones!


The folks at the Florida Public Archaeology Network give some advice on must-have accessories for your archaeologist costume. You can also see the fun costumes they sported last year! Share your favorite archaeology-themed costume on our Facebook page and tell us what you think is a must-have accessory for an archaeologist costume!

FPAN Archaeology costumes



Current Research in Tennessee Archaeology meeting

It was announced yesterday that January 23 and 24, 2015 will be the dates for the Current Research in Tennessee Archaeology (CRITA) meeting. This free event has been held annually since 1989, and includes research presentations and posters from professional archaeologists, students, and independent researchers on archaeological sites and topic related to Tennessee. Since 1992 the CRITA meeting has taken place at the Ed Jones Auditorium on the campus of the Ellington Agricultural Center in Nashville.

Each year the CRITA meeting hosts a fantastic assortment of papers and posters. The 26th annual meeting in January, 2014 included discussions of cave and rock art research, LiDAR and remote sensing techniques, the archaeology of ancient Native American tattooing, Mississippian period crystal production, glass trade beads, early African-American archaeologists, chert sourcing, examinations of marine shell gorgets, and investigations along the Cumberland Plateau, among other topics. Dr. Kevin Smith from MTSU has a compiled a complete list of past CRITA abstracts here.

Friday, January 23 will be the Tennessee Archaeological Advisory Council meeting (1:30 pm) and the annual business meeting for the Tennessee Council for Professional Archaeology (3:00 pm), both of which are also free and open to the public. These events are followed by a reception that begins at 4:15 pm. Research presentations will take place on Saturday, January 24 beginning at 8:25 am and last until the afternoon. For a complete schedule, see the announcement linked above or visit the CRITA web page.

Again, the CRITA meeting is free and open to the public, and we encourage all those interested in learning more about recent research in Tennessee to attend! If you are interested in presenting a paper or poster at the event, contact either Mike Moore ( or Kevin Smith (

TCPA gets a mention in Horizon and Tradition

The latest issue of the Southeastern Archaeological Conference’s newsletter Horizon and Tradition was just published online at the SEAC website (direct link to the PDF here). Page 19 of the newsletter is an interactive feature on the TCPA’s “30 Days of Tennessee Archaeology” blogfest, prepared by TCPA President-elect Phillip Hodge! Hyperlinks in the PDF of the newsletter allow readers to click on any image and visit the post for that day here at the TCPA site.

Page 19 of the Fall, 2014 issue of Horizon and Tradition. the complete issue can be found at:

Page 19 of the Fall, 2014 issue of Horizon and Tradition. the complete issue can be found at:

Slipping Through the Crevices at Mound Bottom

Tracy Brown over at Archaeology in Tennessee posts a fantastic reminiscence about Mound Bottom and Mace Bluff, along with some thoughts on the site layout and symbolism.

Archaeology in Tennessee

This is another one of my folksy but true stories about good old times in Tennessee archaeology. It involves a trip I made to Mound Bottom in 1973. Mound Bottom is a large Mississippian Period site located on the Harpeth River in Cheatham County, Tennessee. It is now preserved within Harpeth River State Park. If you need some detailed background information on this site, you can read about it here: and here:

I was an undergraduate geology student at Austin Peay State University in 1973. One of my best friends, who lived on my floor in the Ellington Hall dormitory, was Paul Pitt. At that time Paul’s older brother and sister were graduate students on campus, and he introduced me to them. The Pitt family home was in Ashland City, Cheatham County, Tennessee. One of the many things I respected about the Pitt family was their deep interest…

View original post 2,524 more words

PBS Antiques Roadshow Appraises Duck River Cache and Sandy

Interesting piece from the Archaeology in Tennessee blog about Antiques Roadshow visiting the McClung Museum in Knoxville.

Archaeology in Tennessee

This was an interesting and surprising evening! While the rest of my family was at a concert, I prepared some food in the kitchen at home, plopped my bottom into a den chair, munched on dinner, and watched some television. After Erin Burnett had regaled me with assorted Ebola horrors on CNN, I did some quick channel surfing and landed on the Public Broadcasting System (PBS) channel where The Antiques Roadshow was already underway―from Knoxville, Tennessee. After watching a few minutes, the camera suddenly cut away to a program emcee standing in front of the Frank H. McClung Museum of Natural History & Culture at The University of Tennessee. The primary subject of concern was the museum’s permanent exhibit called Archaeology and the Native Peoples of Tennessee.

Once inside the museum, the emcee was accompanied by a professional art appraiser with knowledge of Native American artifacts and their monetary…

View original post 515 more words

30 Days of Tennessee Archaeology 2014 – the Day After

Tanya M. Peres, PhD, RPA
President, TCPA
Associate Professor, Middle Tennessee State University

I think we can all agree that “30 Days of Tennessee Archaeology” Blogfest was an overwhelming success! The blogfest started out as the brainchild of TCPA Secretary/Treasurer Aaron Deter-Wolf, and the TCPA Board members quickly agreed this would be a fun way to raise the visibility of archaeology across the state. This endeavor was successful due to Aaron’s steadfast organization and scheduling of contributors and posts. However, we couldn’t have had a blogfest without the contributors and readers! Thanks to everyone that took the time to share with us a glimpse of their archaeological world. Thanks to the readers for their interest in the subject and their support for this project.

I thought it would interesting (and heck, a little geeky) to share some of the metrics for the success of the blogfest. After all, I am a scientist, and scientists like numbers! We actually have two sets of metrics to look at: those for the WordPress site, and those for Facebook.

  • The new TCPA website was launched in late January, 2014.
  • Between February and August 2014, we averaged 108 unique visitors and 299 views per month, with peak traffic in March (324 visitors / 560 views, which corresponded to the State Artifact bill being signed into law).
  • In September 2014, our site had nearly 3,300 unique visitors and a total of nearly 7,000 views.
  • The number of visitors peaked on September 12, with 639 visitors viewing or sharing the posts by TCPA President-Elect Phil Hodge and Executive Board Member Dr. Shannon Hodge.
  • The post on the Nashville Zoo cemetery by Shannon Hodge has had a total of 1,166 views since it went live on September 11.
WordPress statistics for January 1 - September 30

WordPress statistics for January 1 – September 30, 2014

As far as Facebook, the September 11 post by Shannon Hodge reached the news feed of 2,029 people, followed by the September 18 post by Larry McKee and Hannah Guidry (also on the Nashville Zoo) reached 1,933 people, the September 12 post by Phil Hodge (1,521 people), and the Day 29 (9/29) post by Paul Avery reached 1,220 people. The other posts during the month averaged 400-500 people reached.

During the month of September, the TCPA Facebook page increased in “Likes” by 15%. We also saw an increase of the number of people interacting with our posts on FB during the month of September.

Likes, Comments, Shares on FB, January 1, 2014 to September 30, 2014.

Likes, Comments, Shares on FaceBook, January 1, 2014 to September 30, 2014.

If you didn’t get a chance to contribute this year – not to worry – “30 Days of Tennessee Archaeology” will be back in September 2015!