Humans have lived in North America for more than 13,000 years, but the written history of the continent goes back fewer than 500. This leaves many questions for science to answer: What were people doing during those prehistoric years? How and where did they live? What parts of their environments did they use? How did they interpret their world?
Artifacts are often all that remains of these first inhabitants. Archaeologists recover these materials, then describe and analyze them to interpret how prehistoric people lived in the same areas where we live today.
Museum archaeologists focus their research primarily on Native American societies of the Ohio region prior to A.D. 1650. The department's collections contain more than 750,000 artifacts from more than 3,000 sites, mostly from the Ohio region. Collection highlights include:
Paleoindian stone tools from the 13,000-year-old Paleo Crossing site
The Hartley mastodon, a small adult female mastodon found preserved in a bog near Salem, Ohio
10,000 animal bones and artifacts from the late Ice Age Sheriden Cave site
Stone tools, pottery and food remains from the South Park, White Fort, and Heckelman village sites; radiocarbon dated to between 500 and 800 years ago
The Ringler Dugout, a Late Prehistoric watercraft carved from a 22-foot-long white oak log, which was discovered in Savannah Lake in Ashland County
To learn more about a real archaeological dig, read
about work at the Heckelman site in Erie county or watch a video of the excavation work.
If you are interested in participating in an Archaeological dig with the Museum please visit the Archaeology in Action page to learn more.
College students seeking a paid summer internship in the Archaeology department are encouraged to apply for the Kirtlandia Research Internship or the Cleveland Archaeological Society Internship Program.
Click here to visit Dr. Remond's Archaeology blog.
Curator of Archaeology: Dr. Brian Redmond
If you would like to contact the Archaeology department you may contact either; Dr. Redmond at firstname.lastname@example.org or (216) 231-4600, ext. 3301, or Ann DuFresne at email@example.com or (216) 231-4600, ext. 3243.