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any physical manifestation owing any of its attributes to human activity for managment purposes the definition is narrower and suggests that some cultural resources have more significance to the history of humankind. Cultural resources are unique and finite in number, i.e., a non-renewable resource. Thus important aspects of our cultural heritage must be preserved for the benefit of the people by utilizing managment skills such as planning and organizing resources, and evaluating the hostorical significance of cultural resources.
- United Nations Environmental Security Council
- - protection of temples Abu Simbel in Egypt from the banks of the Nile behind the Aswan High Dam (1950s) to a new site safe from rising waters
- -Serpent Mound of Ohio in 1886, Frederick Putnam of Harvards Peabody Museum went around collecting donations from wealthy women in Boston, purchased the site, then fenced it off to protect it. The site was eventually donated to the state.
History of Laws/Acts to protect Cultural Resources in the United States:
As Europeans colonized the Americas, they discovered that artifacts could be sold to museums in the Eastern US and in Europe. Many sites were looted and destroyed by these early "pot hunters".
1906, protected sites on federal land; however, it was subsequently shown to be too ambiguously worded to enable prosecution
Historic Sites Act
1935, gave the National Park Service a broad mandate to identify, protect and preserve cultural resources "fundamentally important" to Americans. Primarily geared toward the protection of historic sites and stressed permanent physical preservation in situ
Reservoir Salvage Act
1960, directeed the Secretary of the Interior to oversee the salvage of resources in river basins flooded by dam construction- basically a last ditch effort to save stuff
National Historic Preservation Act (NHPA) 1966
- 1. Required the federal govrnment to establish a nationwide system for identifying and protecting historic places, including archaeological sites.
- 2. Called for establishing a National Register of Historic Places3. Appropriated funds for historic preservation organizations to carry out surveys and cultural resource planning in each state; State Historic Preservation Office (SHPO).
- 4. Established a National Advisory Council to oversee compliance with the Act
Archaeological and Historic Preservation Act- 1974
1974, an ammendment to the Reservoir Salvage Act; provided funding for historic preservation. Up to 1% (!) of federal dollars allocated for a particular project (e.g., highway development, pipe line, etc.) must be devoted to archaeological and historic resource mitigation
Archaeological Resource Protection Act (ARPA) 1979
- 1979, a cultural resource must ne atleast 100 years old and on federal land to be protected; required that a permit must be obtained to remove cultural resources
- - ammnendment to the Act in 1990 established curational guidelines for cultural materials
Ethical Guidelines and Responsibilities for Conservation Archaeology
- 1. Archaeological record- conserve as much as possible, dig only if absolutely necessary
- 2. Colleagues- give credit where credit is due (hence the term collegiality)
- 3. Research and Scholarship- research reports and publications on a site must be produced since this is the only record left
- 4. Clients- need to be fair to the client in terms of cost, time, results, and deadlines (salvage archaeology is a business)
- 5. Law- must fulfill the terms of the contract following the legal guidelines (compliance with Acts)
- 6. Living- responsible to all non-archaeologists interested in or concerned about archaeological sites and data. Human history belongs to EVERYONE
American Indian Religious Freedom Act
1978, right of Native people to believe, express, and excercise their traditional religions and rituals; protection of access to religious archaeological sites and use of sacred objects
Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act
1990, provides for the protection of Native American marked and unmarked graves, which were NOT protected under the "Cemetary Act". Mandated that all skeletal material excavated before 1990 must be properly inventoried and curated (a set of standards was established for skeletal analysis), if the ethnic affiliation of the Native American skeleton is known, the the curation facility has the legal obligation to contact the closest federally recognized tribe
- ex.1 Native skeletal material from the Battle of Little Big Horn has been repatriated and buried on the Crow Reservation in Montana
- ex.2 Native skeletal material, from known historic Osage sites in Missouri, continues to be stored at the University of Missouri because the Osage of Oklahoma (closest federally recognized tribe) has requested they remain there for analysis