Current Archaeological Field Schools

Archaeology at Swan Creek, May 22-June 9, 2017

The Center for Archaeological Research (CAR) in cooperation with the Department of Sociology and Anthropology, Missouri State University (MSU) is offering a summer intersession course in field archaeology and laboratory analysis. Students will receive training in archaeological field methods of survey, mapping, excavation, and basic laboratory analysis. Students will also learn how archaeologists preserve and interpret archaeological materials.

This 3-week session will take place at an historic Osage Indian hunting camp in Swan Creek valley in Christian County, Missouri. The goal of the field school will be to expand the test excavations from the 2016 field school in an attempt to confirm site 23CN2100 as one of three Osage sites that Henry Rowe Schoolcraft observed almost 200 years ago. The study area is located a short drive from Springfield and MSU. Daily transportation from and to MSU is included.

Course:  ANT 351 Field Archaeology (3 credits)
Time:  8:00 A.M. – 4:30 P.M., Monday through Friday
Instructor:   Mr. Jack Ray
Prerequisites:  ANT 125 or ANT 240;  AND instructor permission
Enrollment Limit:  12 students
Tuition:  Missouri residents: $615.00; non-residents: $1,320 (first-time MSU applicants pay $35 University admissions fee)
Additional fee:  $300 to cover supplies, equipment, and transportation
Application:  Application and release forms must be completed as soon as possible (admission is on a first-come first-served basis). Application and release forms can be obtained from the Department of Sociology and Anthropology (contact the department secretary) or from the Center for Archaeological Research (contact Jack Ray), or by clicking here: download application form, download release form.
Contact:  Jack Ray,, Center for Archaeological Research, Missouri State University, 901 S. National Ave., Springfield, MO 65897, 417-836-4888

Historical Archaeology in Ash Grove, Missouri, June 12-July 6, 2017

This field school is part of a larger archaeological study of daily life among African Americans and Euro Americans from the 1870s through the 1940s in Ash Grove, MO. In 2017, field work will focus on two sites. We will continue excavations at the Reeves site, where members of the African American community established a home and raised their children. We will also conduct archaeological survey and shovel-testing at the nearby Ash Grove Company Town site, where white laborers and their families lived. A comparison of these sites will yield insight into daily life among working class Euro and African Americans in this area during the decades following the Civil War.

This field school is in collaboration with the Ozarks Afro-American Heritage Museum, and Reeves and Berry Families. Students will have a chance to meet descendants of the people who once lived and worked at these sites.

Course:  ANT 351 Field Archaeology (4 credits)
Instructor:  Dr. Elizabeth Sobel
Prerequisites:  Acceptance is based on the applicant’s level of interest, degree of commitment, and previous coursework. Interest and commitment are most important.
Enrollment Limit:   12 students
Tuition:  $820 in-state tuition
Additional fee:  $300 for supplies.
Application:  Download the course flyer and application here.  Scan and email the completed form to Dr. Sobel at or drop off a hard copy in the Department of Sociology & Anthropology, Suite 451, Strong Hall.  We recommend that you apply by March 31, 2017.
Contact:  Dr. Elizabeth Sobel at, Department of Sociology and Anthropology, Missouri State University, 901 S. National Ave., Springfield, MO 65897, 417-836-5145.