People often ask us how they can become involved in local archaeology, and we always recommend getting involved with your local Florida Anthropological Society (FAS) (http://fasweb.org/) chapter. FAS provides those interested in archaeology and professional archaeologists a formal means to come together in a way that is mutually beneficial. FAS is open to anyone willing to abide by the FAS statement of ethics. The organization promotes the study of Florida’s past and brings attention to the general public and to appropriate governmental agencies the need for preservation of archaeological and historical sites within Florida. Members of FAS also receive the quarterly publication, The Florida Anthropologist, which provides readers with a great variety of articles detailing various aspects of Florida archaeology. It is always a great read!
FAS currently has sixteen Chapters in the state. Chapters generally meet about once a month to conduct society business, to socialize, and to hear a presentation about archaeology or history. Every year in early May, one chapter hosts the Florida Anthropological Society’s Annual Meeting, which includes paper and poster sessions on topics related to Florida archaeology, various workshops, behind-the-scenes tours of museums and archaeological sites, and fieldtrips.
Each March is Florida Archaeology Month (FAM) (www.flpublicarchaeology.org/FAM/index.php). Every year has a different theme which is reflected in a poster, bookmarks, and other educational material. Archaeology Month a great time to get out and learn about Florida’s history and archaeology! FAM has become an important program for school children in Florida and many educators take advantage of FAM information to teach about the history and prehistory of Florida. Some FAM events are specifically designed for school children or field trip groups. The Florida Park Service is a great supporter of FAM, displaying the posters in park entrance stations and other high-traffic areas. State Parks throughout Florida also host a wide variety of events during FAM. Various private museums and public libraries display the posters and make bookmarks available for students of all ages to promote stewardship. An interactive FAM website provides the public with even more information about Florida archaeology!
So there you have it, a rundown of some of the more common archaeology acronyms in Florida (in addition to FPAN of course)! Many professions are full of acronyms, and unless you are in that field it can be somewhat confusing. As a member of the public with an interest in Florida archaeology, these acronyms, or what they represent, may be of great importance to you. If you are interested in becoming more involved and taking advantage of the archaeological opportunities in your community, FAS might be the answer you have been looking for!
FPAN North Central Region