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Historical Archaeology
Historical archaeology is a part of archaeology which studies the material remains of past societies that also left behind some other form of historical record. This field of research takes a multi-disciplinary approach, embracing the interests of a diverse group of scholars representing the disciplines of anthropology, history, geography, and folklore. In the New World, historical archaeologists work on a broad range of sites preserved on land and underwater. In Oregon, historic archaeology sites document any changes that occurred in our area after the initial arrival of non-native peoples to our region (currently viewed as 1805 with the arrival of Lewis & Clark) and their interactions with Native Americans. Historic archaeology sites include sites related to early European contact and settlement (e.g., Fort Astoria, Hudson’s Bay sites, French Prairie settlement), impacts from later ethnic groups (e.g., Chinese miners, Hawaiian fur trappers, African American loggers), as well as sites relating to the subsequent spread of the frontier and later urbanization and industrialization of the west. By examining the physical and documentary record of these sites, historical archaeologists attempt to discover the fabric of common everyday life in the past and seek to understand the broader historical development of their own and other societies.

Historic Artifact Identification & Historic Archaeology Guidelines

Links to Other Oregon Historical Archaeology Websites