2016 Events

Events planned for Nebraska Archaeology Month 2016 have concluded! Keep up to date on plans for Nebraska Archaeology Month events in 2017 by continuing to visit nebraskaarchaeology.org and “Liking” us on Facebook!

10th Governor’s Proclamation of September 2016 as Nebraska Archaeology Month (Nebraska State Capitol Building – Lincoln)
12-14th Artifact Roadshow and Special Archaeology Junior Ranger Weekend (National Grasslands Visitor Center – Wall, SD)
20th 12th Annual Nebraska Artifact Show (Seward County Fairgrounds – Seward)
Through August 28th Odyssey’s Shipwreck! Pirates & Treasure Exhibit|Omaha’s Shipwreck: Remembering the Bertrand Exhibit (Durham Museum – Omaha)

2nd “The Franey Cache in Western Nebraska” – Friday Night Talk (Chadron State Park, Chadron)
2nd-5th Hudson Meng Education and Research Open House (Hudson Meng Research and Visitor Center, Harrison/Chadron)
3-4th Fort Atkinson Archaeology Walking Tour (Fort Atkinson State Historical Park, Fort Calhoun)
11th Archaeology Free Family Fun Day (Nebraska State Historical Society, Lincoln)
15th “Features of Fort Atkinson” – Brown Bag Lecture by NSHS Archeologist Nolan Johnson (Nebraska History Museum, Lincoln)
15th Archaeology Happy Hour (Blue Blood Brewery, Lincoln)
18th Sunday with a Scientist: Nebraska Archaeology and Stone Tool Technology (Morrill Hall/Nebraska State Museum, Lincoln)
20th “History and Archeology of Birdwood Creek” (Lincoln County Historical Museum, North Platte)
28th Archaeology Offices and Lab Open Houses (Nebraska State Historical Society Archeology Division, Lincoln)
29th AIA Lecture: Decoding Plant and Animal Symbolism in Mesopotamia (Joslyn Museum, Omaha)
September 6th through October 11th OLLI Class – Everyday Archaeology of Nebraska (University of Nebraska – Osher Lifelong Learning Institute, Lincoln)

1st-2nd Steamboat Bertrand Interpretive Talks (DeSoto National Wildlife Refuge, Blair, NE/Missouri Valley, IA)
2nd Girl Scouts Build Your Future: Full STEAM Ahead (Lincoln)
5th – Archaeology 101 and the Role of the National Park Service(Agate Fossil Beds, Harrison)
12-15th 74th Plains Anthropological Conference (Lincoln)
13th Alumni Reunion – UNL Anthropology Department(Lincoln)

Event Listings

Blair, NE/Missouri Valley, IA

The Story of the Steamboat Bertrand – Interpretive Talks

Date & Time: Saturday and Sunday, October 1-2, 1:30 pm
Location: DeSoto National Wildlife Refuge, 316th Lane
Information: http://www.fws.gov/refuge/Desoto/
Admission: $3/vehicle
Celebrate Nebraska Archaeology Month by learning about the history, recovery, and preservation of the Steamboat Bertrand!

Fort Calhoun

Archaeology at Fort Atkinson: A Walking Tour

Date & Time: Saturday and Sunday, September 3-4, 12:30 pm
Location: Fort Atkinson State Historical Park, 201 S. 7th Street
Information: Ft. Atkinson Living History Weekend Schedule
Admission: Nebraska Park Entry Permit Required (Daily Permit – $5, Annual Permit – $25). Visitor Center – Adults-$2, Children-$1
A walking tour by Nolan Johnson (Nebraska State Historical Society Archaeologist) of archaeological excavations at Fort Atkinson will take place at 12:30 pm on Saturday and Sunday. Tour starts at the Powder Magazine on the Parade Ground. Coincides with a living-history weekend at Fort Atkinson, featuring volunteers recreating the lives of the soldiers, artisans, and civilians that lived in and around the outpost. Be sure to also check out the Archaeology Room for kids in the Northeast Quadrant of the Fort!


Hudson Meng Bison Bone Bed – Labor Day Weekend Open House

Date & Time: Labor Day Weekend (September 3-5)
Location: Hudson Meng Bison Bone Bed Education and Research Center, Meng Dr, Harrison, NE 69346
Admission: Free to all events and admission fee waived!
Information: Hudson Meng Open House
Hudson Meng Bison Bone Bed – Labor Day Weekend Open House!
Enjoy guided tours of the site hourly, 9:00 am – 4:00 pm. From 10:00 am – 3:00 pm on Saturday and Sunday, visitors can watch and participate in a flint knapping demonstration to learn more about how stone tools are created. Practice your skill at throwing an atlatl, a tool used for hunting large game, and children can make their own atlatl to take home. Also on Saturday and Sunday, the Black Hills Parks & Forests Association will be providing free hotdogs, cake and drinks from 11:00 am to 3:00 pm at the research center.
Additional Events:
Friday, September 2, 7:00 pm – Presentation by Tawnya Waggle on “The Franey Cache in Western Nebraska” – a Paleoindian period cache found to contain unusual lithic artifacts and even a mollusk shell native to the Caribbean. This Friday Night Talk will take place in the Trading Post at Chadron State Park.
Saturday, September 3, 8:00 am – One-hour geology hike led by Eric Alt at Toadstool Park, followed by a guided tour at Hudson Meng!

Archaeology 101 and the Role of the National Park Service

Date: October 5
Location: Agate Fossil Beds, Harrison, NE 69346
Website: nps.gov/agfo/
Celebrate Nebraska Archaeology Month at Agate Fossil Beds! Mr. Chris Mather from the museum curatorial staff at the Fort Laramie National Historic Site will explain the basics of how we use science to learn about human cultures of the past. Hands-on activities will be provided to illustrate some of the concepts. Also included in the discussion will be examples from different national park sites in the area.


Governor’s Proclamation Ceremony

Date & Time: August 10th, 10:00 am
Location: Nebraska State Capitol Building
Admission: Free
Join Nebraska Archaeologists and Nebraska Govenor Pete Ricketts for the official Proclamation of September 2016 as Nebraska Archaeology Month!

Celebrate Archaeology Month at the Nebraska History Museum – Archaeology Free Family Fun Day

Date & Time: September 11th, 2:00-4:00 pm
Location: Nebraska State Historical Society
Information: Archaeology Month at NHM!
Admission: Free
Celebrate Archaeology Month at the Nebraska History Museum! Meet a NSHS Archeologist and help with a dig and watch a flint knapping demonstration! Have you dug up something interesting? Bring it and an archeologist will help you identify your treasure. While at the museum, visit the Nebraska Unwrapped exhibit and see the many artifacts that have been found via archeological excavations. No reservations necessary, just drop in!

“Features of Fort Atkinson” – Brown Bag Lecture by NSHS Archeologist Nolan Johnson

Date & Time: Thursday, September 15, 12:00 pm
Location: Nebraska History Museum
Information: NSHS Brownbag – Features of Ft. Atkinson
Admission: Free
Nebraska State Historical Brown Bag Lecture Series presents “Features of Fort Atkinson” by Nolan Johnson, NSHS Archeologist.

Archaeology Happy Hour

Date & Time: Thursday, September 15, 4:30-6:30 p.m.
Location: Blue Blood Brewery, 925 Robbers Cave Rd., Lincoln, NE
Archaeology Happy Hour/FAC – all are encouraged to join, archaeologist or otherwise! Come after work (festivities will begin around 4:30 pm), and stay for a tour of Robbers Cave at 5:45 pm! (Cave tour is $10 per person – visit bluebloodbrewing.com/brewery-cave-tours/
for more information!)

Sunday with a Scientist: Nebraska Archaeology and Stone Tool Technology

Date & Time: Sunday, September 18, 1:30-4:30 p.m.
Location: Morrill Hall (south of 14th and Vine Streets on the UNL City Campus)
Information: museum.unl.edu/sundaywithascientist
Admission: Members, UNL Faculty/Staff, UNL Students: Free. Non-Members: Regular Museum Admission
The University of Nebraska State Museum’s September Sunday with a Scientist program for children and families will explore Nebraska archaeology and stone tool technology with the Nebraska State Historical Society and the National Park Service’s Midwest Archeological Center. Families will get the chance to explore stone tools, including the excavation and identification of stone artifacts, demonstrations by archeologists on how these tools are made and how Native Americans used stone tools, and learn more about how museums and researchers preserve these tools and share them with the public! In addition to the activity stations, visitors are encouraged to explore Morrill Hall exhibits to learn more about Archaeology and how it relates to Paleontology and Geology!
(‘Sunday with a Scientist’ is a series of presentations that highlight the work of scientists, while educating kids and families on a variety of topics related to science and natural history. Presenters will share scientific information in a fun informal way through demonstrations, activities, or by conducting science on site.)

Archaeology Offices and Lab Open House – Nebraska State Historical Society

Date & Time: September 28, 3:00-5:00 pm
Location: NSHS Archeology Division Offices, 5050 N. 32nd, Lincoln, NE
Information: NSHS Archeology Open House
Admission: Free
The Nebraska State Historical Society will host an Open House at their newly constructed archaeology facility to celebrate Nebraska Archaeology Month. See where archaeologists spend their time working when they are not out in the field and get a behind-the-scenes tour of our collections storage space, including a display of some of our most notable and interesting artifacts! Stay tuned as more details become available!

OLLI Class – Everyday Archaeology of Nebraska

Dates and Times: Tuesdays, September 6-October 11, 1:00-2:30pm
Location: Unitarian Church, Lincoln, NE
Website: http://olli.unl.edu/membership
Admission: UNL OLLI membership required. Additional course fees ($30) apply.
Archaeology doesn’t happen “somewhere else,” when experts discover royal tombs and buried treasure. In this class, Dr. Peter Bleed will show that archaeology has lots to reveal about the history of Nebraska. Bleed will use archaeology to explore the settlement and Civil War in the state and see if it can be used to help understand why Lincoln looks the way it does. Archaeology involves collections and preservation so the class will also cover the value, significance, and appropriate treatment of both personal and public collections. In addition to class room meetings, one session will be a guided field trip to the Lincoln West Haymarket district. Bull whips and pith helmets will be optional!
NOTE: OLLI is a community of adult learners age 50 years plus – membership is required to register for this course.

Girl Scouts Build Your Future: Full STEAM Ahead

Date & Time: October 2, 1:00-4:00 PM
Location: Nebraska History Museum, Lincoln, NE
Website: girlscoutsnebraska.org/_build_your_future_f.html
Admission: $8 for girls and adults, includes activities, snack and patch.
During 2016-17, Girl Scouts Spirit of Nebraska will focus on the theme Build Your Future: Full STEAM Ahead. At this kick-off event you’ll participate in hands-on activities exploring STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math) principles, including those related to the field of Archaeology!! Adults must register with girls, using the adult-to-girl ratios noted on website. Registration closes September 14.

74th Plains Anthropological Conference

Dates: October 12-15
Location: Lincoln, NE
Website: plainsanthropologicalsociety.org/meeting

Alumni Reunion – UNL Anthropology Department

Date & Time: October 13, 6:00-8:00 pm
Location: Nebraska History Museum, Lincoln, NE
Reunite with your fellow UNL Anthropology Department classmates and professors at an Alumni Reunion! This event will be hosted in conjunction with the Thursday night reception of the 74th Plains Anthropological Conference, to be held at the newly renovated Nebraska History Museum. Invitations and additional details to follow at website (in progress) – be sure to RSVP!

North Platte

History and Archaeology of Birdwood Creek

Date & Time: Tuesday, September 20, 7:00 pm
Location: Lincoln County Historical Museum, 2403 N. Buffalo Bill Avenue.
Celebrate Nebraska Archaeology Month with a presentation by NSHS Archeologist Courtney Ziska on the History and Archeology of Birdwood Creek, including results of archeological field survey conducted along the Birdwood in the summer of 2016.


Odyssey’s Shipwreck! Pirates & Treasure Exhibit | Omaha’s Shipwreck: Remembering the Bertrand Exhibit

Dates & Times: Through August 28, 10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. most days
Location: The Durham Museum, 801 S. 10th Street, Omaha.
Website: durhammuseum.org/
Admission: Adults – $11, Children (3-12) – $7, [Chidren under 2 – Free]; Members – Free
The Shipwreck! exhibit showcases Odyssey Marine Exploration’s archaeological work in the deep ocean, containing over 500 artifacts from some of the world’s most fascinating shipwrecks, taking visitors on a voyage through more than 2,000 years of seafaring history.
As a companion exhibition to the Odyssey’s Shipwreck!, and in collaboration with the DeSoto National Wildlife Refuge, the Durham presents Omaha’s Shipwreck, the story of the Steamboat Bertrand that sank in the Missouri River on April 1, 1865, including a display of several objects recovered from the underwater salvage site!

AIA Lecture: Decoding Plant and Animal Symbolism in Mesopotamia

Date & Time: September 29, 5:00 pm
Location: Joslyn Museum, Abbott Lecture Hall
Website: joslyn.org/visit/calendar-of-events
Admission: Free
Presentation by Naomi F. Miller, hosted by the AIA Society: Lincoln/Omaha.

This talk presents recent work on plant and animal symbolism of objects found at the Mesopotamian sites of Ur (c. 2500 BC) and Uruk (c. 3000 BC), in present-day lowland Iraq. Identifying the animals is relatively straightforward. The plant representations, too, are unambiguous, though identification requires more detailed anatomical argument. The economic, political, cultural, and religious ideas embedded in the plant and animal symbolism, however, are less obvious and more debatable, because insofar as the imagery seems to relate to Mesopotamian myths, there is a 500–1000 gap between the artifacts and the written stories. (For complete abstract, visit https://www.archaeological.org/lectures/abstracts/21832).


12th Annual Nebraska Artifact Show

Date & Time: Saturday, August 20, 9:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m.
Location: Seward County Fairgrounds – Harvest Hall
Information: NAS Artifact Show 2016
Admission: Adults – $3, Children 12 & under – Free
World-Class Displays of Prehistoric Stone Artifacts from the Great Plains Region, Professional Identification of Artifacts and Bone, Atlatl Demonstration, Flint Knapping Demonstration. Dr. Phil R. Geib, Archaeologist with the Nebraska State Historical Society, will be giving a public presentation at 1:30 p.m.

Wall, SD

Special Archaeology Junior Ranger Weekend and Artifact Roadshow

Date & Time: Friday, August 12 – Sunday, August 14
Location: National Grasslands Visitor Center – Wall, SD
Take a trip to Wall, SD to participate in a Special Archaeology Junior Ranger Weekend with the Forest Service! On Saturday, August 13th, there will also be a Grasslands Artifact Roadshow, where the public is invited to bring in personal collections and have their artifacts identified and logged as a part of cultural history! For more information, call the visitor center at (605) 279-2125.