Anthropologists Allard, Chiarulli, S. Neusius, Ford, and P. Neusius Present Research to Society for American Archaeology

Posted on 4/26/2012 10:14:54 AM

Francis Allard, Beverly Chiarulli, Sarah Neusius, Ben Ford, and Phillip Neusius, Department of Anthropology, presented papers and posters at the Society for American Archaeology (SAA) annual meeting in Memphis, Tenn., on April 18–22, 2012.

The presentations included:

Francis Allard: “The Nanyue Kingdom: Assimilation, Acculturation, and Inter-Regional Interaction”


Established in 204 BCE, the Nanyue kingdom occupied much of present-day Guangdong and Guangxi until its final defeat at the hands of the Han dynasty in 111 BCE. As revealed by research carried out over the past decades, Nanyue’s artifacts and architecture reveal a complex blend of elements of local and distant origins, including metropolitan Han China (to Nanyue’s north) and southeast Asia and beyond. This paper considers the nature and impact of these many instances of interaction, and in so doing comments on the different forms that interaction may take in the emergence and development of complex polities.

Beverly Chiarulli, Phillip Neusius, Ben Ford, and Sarah Neusius: “The IUP M.A. in Applied Archaeology: What We Planned, What We Have Learned So Far”

Presented in the electronic paper session “Lessons From The Trenches: The Pedagogy Of Archaeology And Heritage,” sponsored by Heritage Values Interest Group, Committee On Ethics


In Fall 2005, we began to develop an M.A. in Applied Archaeology. Our goal was to meet industry and government needs for professional archaeologists. We expected that most of the graduates would be employed in the fields of cultural and heritage management. The program was designed to balance recent SAA initiatives with institutional requirements and resources. We sought to develop critical skills through a set of integrated courses. This paper discusses our experience and changing perspectives on how to train applied archaeologists.

Sarah Neusius was also a discussant in the electronic paper session “Lessons From The Trenches: The Pedagogy Of Archaeology And Heritage.”

Sarah Neusius Presenting at the 2012 SAA

Sarah Neusius (right), co-authored with Beverly Chiarulli: “Dating the Late Pre-Contact Period in Central Western Pennsylvania”


As part of a long-term research project focused on Monongahela and related sites in the river drainages of central western Pennsylvania, we have obtained a series of standard radiocarbon and AMS dates that help establish the history of the region prior to European contact. These dates indicate that the area was occupied more or less continuously from the 11th through the 16th centuries, although individual villages were occupied, abandoned, and reoccupied. This program of radiometric dating underscores the importance of obtaining multiple dates from village sites and the preferability of AMS dates on botanical remains.

“Recent Investigations In Western And Central Pennsylvania.”

Beverly Chiarulli organized this poster session, presenting posters on research by IUP faculty members and undergraduate and graduate students.


During the past year, students from Indiana University of Pennsylvania have researched historic and pre-European archaeological sites in Western and Central Pennsylvania. This session presents the results of their investigations on a variety of archaeological projects. The topics range from ceramic, lithic, and faunal analyses to geophysical surveys and the investigation of historic roadways.

Ben Ford, Renate Beyer, and Michael Whitehead

Among the posters in the session were presentations by:

Ben Ford (photo, on left) and graduate students Renate Beyer and Michael Whitehead: “Digitizing Historic Hanna’s Town: Translating Legacy Data into Digital Data”


Historic Hanna’s Town (ca. 1770–1800) has been the site of intermittent archaeological investigations for more than four decades. These excavations, both professional and amateur, have produced nearly a million artifacts, approximately 15 linear feet of notes and artifact catalogs, and many maps. Recent efforts to make this data more accessible have included entering artifact information into a relational database and the construction of a GIS. While the project is in its early phase, this poster presents the initial methodology and challenges encountered and is intended to elicit comments while the methods are still flexible.

Lydia DeHaven and Beverly Chiarulli at the 2012 SAA Annual Meeting

Beverly Chiarulli (photo, on left), Lydia DeHaven (right), Meghan Pace, and Ryan Spittler: “Investigation of the Squirrel Hill Site and Other Late Prehistoric Sites in the Conemaugh Watershed in Western Pennsylvania”


While IUP archaeologists have investigated the Johnston Phase of the Monongahela culture since 2005, the focus of current research is to establish the occupation history and cultural affiliations of the Squirrel Hill site, a village not investigated since the 1950s. This investigation began with a geophysical survey designed to define the internal arrangement of the village and to identify areas for test excavations to collect samples for analysis and dating. While our results are not complete, we have a better understanding of the internal organization of this village as well as its relationship with nearby communities.

Sarah Neusius, co-author with graduate student Andrea Boon: “New Approaches to Interpreting Koster Faunal Assemblages”

Presented in the session “Koster At The Crossroads: Archaic Period Lifeways As Depicted By New Approaches To Old Collections.”


Abundant faunal remains were recovered from the various horizons at Koster. Currently additional analyses of materials from the Early Archaic Horizon Eleven are being conducted and incorporated with the work of earlier researchers. These analyses contribute to the debunking of old ideas about the simplicity and uniformity of Early Archaic peoples in the Midcontinent. Koster faunal remains also are being incorporated into efforts to build a large regional faunal data set from the interior Eastern Woodlands in conjunction with the Digital Archaeological Record. This dataset will allow rigorous explorations of changing human choices concerning animal usage across time and space.

The Society for American Archaeology is the largest conference of Americanist Archaeologists, with an attendance of approximately 3,000.