Heritage, Volume 13, Number 1, Winter 1995 Page: 8
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TEXAS ARCHAEOLOGY AWARENESS WEEK
Celebrating and Preserving Texas' Cultural Diversity
The rich cultural diversity of Texas is
represented by hundreds of thousands of
archaeological and historic sites spread
across the state. Texas Archaeology Awareness
Week, this year being celebrated April
22-29, is a time to save our state's history by
making all Texans aware of this rich heritage
and the need for its preservation. Many
events and programs are currently being
The Texas Historical Commission, in
conjunction with the Texas Archaeological
Society, the Council of Texas Archaeologists,
the Texas Historical Foundation,
and numerous other organizations and agencies
is working to promote public awareness
and education encouraging the support
and protection of archaeological sites
in Texas. As part of the education and
awareness campaign, free materials are
available to those who respond quickly.
Information packets are available free
of charge to teachers, county historical
commissions, archaeological societies, museums,
libraries, and preservation groups
across Texas. Elementary and middle school
packets are available to teachers. The elementary
school packets contain bookmarks,
a coloring book, and a brochure on
the Indians of Texas and the plants they
used, among other items. The middle school
guide also has posters, bookmarks, and fliers
on archaeology and the Indians of Texas
and another on becoming a professional
Museums and county historical commissions
may also order packets that contain
publications, a list of audiovisual resources,
and a pamphlet telling how to
promote your area's archaeological awareness
All quantities are limited, and everyone
is encouraged to respond quickly and early.
For more information on the information
packets that are available, contact the Office
of the State Archaeologist, Texas Historical
Commission, at (512) 463-6090.
The Historical Commission suggests that
county historical commissions become involved
in Archaeology Awareness Week
since they are in a unique position to help
local communities become aware of the
need to preserve their archaeological past.
However a group chooses to celebrate
TAAW, it is vital that all events convey
these important points:
1) Important information can be obtained
from prehistoric Native American
and historic archaeological sites through
2) Archaeology is not the casual collecting
of artifacts. Artifacts that are carelessly
removed from sites by collectors cannot
help to expand our knowledge of the
3) Our state's heritage is irreversibly
harmed by uncontrolled digging and destruction
of archaeological sites for fun and
Some ways that county historical commissions
can celebrate TAAW include:
* Have TAAW officially proclaimed
throughout your county by city and county
officials. Arrange for local newspaper coverage
of the proclamation signing ceremonies
and run news releases in area publications.
* Purchase and present archaeology
books to public and/or school libraries in
your county. Book presentations also offer
photo opportunities that can be promoted
in regional publications.
* Distribute TAAW teacher packets to
educators in your county.
* Organize a Texas Archaeological
Awareness Week bus tour or caravan to
visit historical sites of archaeological interest,
or retrace historic trails.
* Sponsor a lecture or lecture series
during TAAW. The Texas Historical
Commission's Office of the State Archaeologist
can provide assistance in finding
* Have local television and/or radio
stations run a brief public service announcement
with an appropriate preservation
message during Texas Archaeological
For those interested in learning more
about Texas' Native American heritage,the
Texas Historical Commission has compiled
the following brief guide, which
includes some of the places, sites, and collections
associated with the Indians of Texas
from prehistoric to modern times.
* Alabama-Coushatta Indian Reservation,
in Polk County (accessible from
Livingston). The Alabama-Coushatta are
one of only three tribal groups living in
Texas. The reservation was established in
1854. The story of the Alabama-Coushatta
typifies the disruption of American Indian
groups in the 19th century, as Anglo settlement
forced the Indians from their traditional
* Alibates Flint Quarries National
Monument, accessible from Canyon or
Fritch. Also called Alibates agate, the stone
from this locale has a distinctive purple
striping. Alibates was a major stone quarry
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Reference the current page of this Periodical.
Texas Historical Foundation. Heritage, Volume 13, Number 1, Winter 1995, periodical, Winter 1995; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth45408/m1/8/: accessed January 18, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas Historical Foundation.