Presentation suggests archeology as a force for social change

Sarah E. Miller, director of the Florida Public Archeology Network for Northeast Florida and East Central regions, will discuss the power of archeology in activism, on Tuesday, March 21st.

Her presentation is part of Flagler College’s Community Lecture Series and will take place in the historic Solarium in Ponce Hall. Flagler has hosted the Florida Public Archeology Network on its campus since 2006.

“We often think of archaeology as something that happened hundreds or thousands of years ago, but really archaeologists are interested in how cultures change over time, how they adapt, and how we living today can take that knowledge and apply it to contemporary issues,” Miller told Historic City News.

Miller’s lecture will specifically address the impacts of climate change on heritage sites and racism in the form of neglected African-American cemeteries.

Two programs in place aimed at applying archeological knowledge are the Heritage Monitoring Scout and Cemetery Resource Protection Training programs. While HMS engages volunteers to track changes to archeological sites at risk, CRPT creates a baseline for talking about historic cemetery issues and has developed an alliance of skilled cemetery stewards.

“Our end goal for both of these programs is to help living communities make informed decisions and to promote positive social change,” Miller said.

Miller received her master’s degree in Anthropology from East Carolina University in 2001 where she developed archaeology education programs at Tryon Palace in New Bern, North Carolina. Upon graduation from ECU, Miller supervised field and lab projects with public involvement for the Kentucky Archaeological Survey, as well as reviewed compliance projects for the Kentucky Heritage Council. In addition to serving as an FPAN director, she now also serves as national Leadership Team member and statewide coordinator for Project Archaeology, and as Board member for the Journal of Archaeology Education and Society for Historical Archaeology. Her specialties include public archaeology, historical archaeology, municipal archaeology and historic cemeteries.

The programs take place monthly. Tickets are $5 per person for a single lecture, or $15 for four lectures. Active military personnel may attend at no charge. Lectures begin at 10 a.m. in the Ponce Hall Solarium at Flagler College, 74 King St. Reservations are not required. The lecture will last approximately one hour and will be followed by a coffee and pastry reception. During the 2016-2017 season, Flagler celebrates the 10th anniversary of the Community Lecture Series, which was founded in 2007 to offer the local community an opportunity to explore topics covering arts, religion, politics, culture, history, economics and more with experts on the college faculty. The theme of the series this year is “Challenges at the Crossroads: Finding Solutions to Local Issues.”

Share your thoughts with our readers >>