AWIARE / Levett Foundation Grants 2021

AWIARE / Levett Foundation Grant

AWIARE, in cooperation with the Levett Foundation, is again making available up to $10,000 in grant funds to provide assistance to college or university students conducting archaeological, historical, and paleoenvironmental research in the greater Tampa Bay region of Florida.

Deadline for Applications: December 15, 2020

The Alliance for Weedon Island Archaeological Research and Education, Inc. (AWIARE), in cooperation with the Levett Foundation, is making available up to $10,000 to be awarded annually to provide assistance to graduate students (MA, MS, Ph.D.) who are conducting archaeological, historical, and paleoenvironmental research in the greater Tampa Bay region of Florida. 

Types of projects that will be considered include field research, laboratory analyses, collections research, and documents research.  Priority will be given to applicants whose proposals include 1) field research at Weedon Island Preserve; 2) research using artifact, faunal, or documents collections at AWIARE; 3) field research at sites in the greater Tampa Bay area (Pinellas, Hillsborough, Manatee counties); 4) research using Tampa Bay area collections held elsewhere (e.g., Florida Museum of Natural History, Florida Bureau of Archaeological Research, Smithsonian Institution, universities, local museums, private collections).  

Research related to the Weeden Island culture and period is encouraged but not required.  Paleoenvironmental research must have applicability to archaeological or historical time periods (i.e., Late Pleistocene through the modern era) and interests (e.g., human-environment interaction; effects of sea level variation on human populations; climatic variability through time).

Individuals interested in applying must be currently enrolled in a university graduate program. 

The deadline for applying for the 2021 grant is December 15, 2020.  Individuals interested in submitting a proposal should contact Dr. Robert Austin, AWIARE, 1500 Weedon Drive NE, St. Petersburg, FL 33702 or by email to awiare1@gmail.com for application guidelines.

AWIARE / Friends of Weedon Island Grant 2021

AWIARE / Friends of Weedon Island Grant

The Friends of Weedon Island (FOWI) have contributed $2000 to AWIARE for undergraduate student grants in 2021.

Deadline for applications: December 15, 2020

The Alliance for Weedon Island Archaeological Research and Education, Inc. (AWIARE), in cooperation with the Friends of Weedon Island (FOWI), is making available up to $1,000 to provide assistance to budding scholars enrolled in an undergraduate (B.A., B.S.) program in a Florida college or university.  Undergraduate students conducting archaeological, historical, and paleoenvironmental research in the greater Tampa Bay region of Florida are eligible for the grant.  

Grant funds may be used to cover the costs associated with fieldwork, special analyses (e.g., radiocarbon dates, faunal or botanical analyses, soils analysis, etc.), collections research, documents research, travel expenses associated with research projects, and travel expenses associated with presenting a paper based on the student's research at a professional meeting. 

Priority will be given to applicants whose proposals include 1) field research at Weedon Island Preserve; 2) research using artifact, faunal, or documents collections at AWIARE; 3) field research at sites in the greater Tampa Bay area (Pinellas, Hillsborough, Manatee counties); 4) research using Tampa Bay area collections held elsewhere (e.g., Florida Museum of Natural History, Bureau of Archaeological Research, Smithsonian Institution, universities, local museums, private collections).  

Research related to the Weeden Island culture and period is encouraged but not required.  Paleoenvironmental research must have applicability to archaeological or historical time periods (i.e., Late Pleistocene through the modern era) and interests (e.g., human-environment interaction; effects of sea level variation on human populations; climatic variability through time).

Students interested in applying for the grant should submit a letter not to exceed two pages that describes the project for which the funds are being requested; what research question(s) or problem(s) are being addressed; how the funds will be applied to these problems; what, if any, additional funds will be used to accomplish the research; and how the research will contribute to Florida archaeology. The applicant should include a budget indicating the amount requested and describing how the money will be spent along with a letter(s) of support from faculty.

Applications for the 2021 award are now being accepted and can be sent to: Dr. Robert Austin, AWIARE/FOWI Student Grant, AWIARE, 1500 Weedon Drive NE, St. Petersburg, FL 33702 or by email to awiare1@gmail.com. The deadline for applications is December 15, 2020.

AWIARE/Friends of Weedon Island Grant

AWIARE/Friends of Weedon Island Undergraduate Student Grant

The AWIARE Student Grants Committee selected Morgan Grieg, USFSP undergraduate student in history, to receive the 2020 AWIARE/FOWI Student Grant.  Morgan will receive $1250.00 to help support an eight-week research trip to Spain to conduct original archival research in Badajoz, Zafra, and Seville on the Hernando de Soto expedition.  Morgan is working under the supervision of Dr. Michael Francis.  The central goal is to locate information related to the expedition's participants, and to assemble a detailed inventory of the supplies and provisions brought on the expedition. The new material will be integrated into the open-access digital database titled La Florida: The Interactive Digital Archive of the Americas.

AWIARE/Levett Foundation Grant

University of Georgia Student Receives AWIARE/Levett Grant

Lindsey Parsons, graduate student in geology at the University of Georgia, was selected to receive this year’s AWIARE/Levett Foundation student research grant.

Lindsey Parsons, graduate student in geology at the University of Georgia, was selected to receive this year’s AWIARE/Levett Foundation student research grant.  The $10,000 grant will  support her MS research to study how scallop harvesting practices of prehistoric Tampa Bay Native communities were affected by climate change between ~ A.D. 800 and 1850.  Lindsey will be conducting stable isotope analysis of bay scallops collected during previous excavations at the Weedon Island and Bayshore Homes archaeological sites to paleoenvironmental conditions during the time of scallop harvesting.  She previously conducted a similar analysis of scallop shells from the Pineland site in southwest Florida. Her results there indicated scallops collected by Native inhabitants were larger during the cooler Little Ice Age (~AD 1200-1850) when conditions for scallop growth were more favorable and smaller during the earlier Medieval Warm Period (~AD 800-1200).  She expects to see a similar difference in the Tampa Bay scallops.  In addition to providing information on how Native people adapted their harvesting practices, Lindsey’s study will have important implications for how climate change may affect modern marine shellfish populations.

AWIARE / Levett Foundation Grant

AWIARE / Levett Grant Recipient Studies Tampa Bay Wetlands

University of South Florida doctoral candidate, Kendal Jackson, is using radiocarbon dates to assist in dating relict estuarine flooding surfaces to determine how human-environmental interaction shaped the establishment and development of late-Holocene (ca. 6500 BP-present) estuarine ecosystems in Tampa Bay.

Over the course of the last couple of months, I have collected and analyzed surface reference soil samples from different types of intertidal wetlands in Tampa Bay. These modern reference data will be essential for understanding and characterizing ancient sediment beds that I plan to intersect with core samples. In addition, I’ve collected short cores (1-2 m depth) in areas of mangrove swamp within Tampa Bay and have analyzed their stratigraphy to chart changes in sediment and fossil compositions. So far, the records show that many of Tampa Bay wetlands have undergone dramatic conversions from salt prairie and salt marsh communities to mangrove forest. These changes seem to have unfolded only since the mid-20th century, and may represent ecological responses to industrial scale mosquito ditching that accompanied expansive residential development in the region, but preceded environmental research and regulation.

We have also been working at Safety Harbor site (8PI2), a site which will certainly play into my dissertation work. We have been able to map the spatial plan of the Pre-Columbian village there, and early radiocarbon assays which place major occupation across the 14th and 15th centuries. Work is ongoing on the soils, zoo-archaeological remains, and artifact assemblages.

Testing is being planned at other sites, including Ross and Good Islands, this coming winter. The primary goals of this future work is to understand the geochronology of Tampa Bay’s nearshore estuary basins and to research the role of coastal Pre-Columbian peoples in engineering the coastal strand.

Grant Recipient Studies Pottery Production

AWAIRE / Levitt Grant Recipient Studies Tampa Bay Pottery Production

University of Florida Ph.D. student, Trevor Duke, is analyzing pottery from the Tierra Verde mound (8PI51) in the Lyman Warren Collection curated at AWIARE.

University of Florida Ph.D. student, Trevor Duke, is analyzing pottery from the Tierra Verde mound (8PI51) in the Lyman Warren Collection curated at AWIARE.  This research is being funded in part by an AWIARE/Levett Foundation Grant.  According to Trevor, “Tierra Verde’s assemblage is unparalleled for a site in this region for its diversity in style, form, and surface treatment. My preliminary technological analyses of Weeden Island and Safety Harbor sherds housed at the AWIARE research lab indicates that a variety of potters of differing skill levels made mortuary pottery in and around Tampa Bay.”  Pottery samples from Tierra Verde and the Safford Mound (8PI3) in Tarpon Springs are being prepared for petrographic analysis and Laser Ablation-Inductively Coupled Plasma-Mass Spectrometry. These analyses allow archaeologists to assess the mineral and elemental content of clays used to make pottery, which ultimately can highlight pottery production hotspots in both Tampa Bay and across the Southeast. The most recent phase of Trevor’s project has involved the extraction of charred residue from potsherds for radiocarbon dating. Obtaining dates from sampled sites will help to identify the timing of specific changes in pottery production practices in the Tampa Bay region, which is paramount for understanding the development of social networks. 

AWIARE Provides Grants for Weeden Island Research

RESEARCH

Grants Awarded

To further our mission of facilitating archaeological research and educational opportunities, AWIARE, in cooperation with the Levett Foundation, is offering up to $10,000 in grant funds annually to support student research on Weedon Island and the Weeden Island culture.

This year the awards committee chose three worthy recipients to receive funding. University of South Florida doctoral candidate Kendal Jackson will receive funding for 12 radiocarbon dates to assist in dating relict estuarine flooding surfaces to determine how human-environmental interaction shaped the establishment and development of late-Holocene (ca. 6500 BP-present) estuarine ecosystems in Tampa Bay. Kendal’s project is a fine example of using an interdisciplinary approach (archaeology and geo-sciences) to address a topic that also has relevance for today.

Trevor Duke, from the University of Florida, will receive funding that will contribute to his petrographic and instrumental analysis of clays used to make pottery found in mortuary and domestic contexts at Weeden Island and Safety Harbor culture sites in Tampa Bay. Determining whether mortuary pottery was made with different or more restricted varieties of clay, would support the hypothesis of ceramic specialists and will contribute to his doctoral research topic of assessing the role of mortuary pottery specialization in creating, maintaining, and transforming social connections in the region during these periods.

The final recipient, Heather Draskovitch, is an MA student at USF who is currently surveying and testing the Weeden Island site to better understand its chronological development. Her grant funds will help obtain radiocarbon dates to document this development. Congratulations to all three recipients for submitting clear and well-developed proposals that are consistent with the overall mission of AWIARE.