March 25, 2023 @ 2pm – Dr. Michael Francis

FAM Presentation featuring Dr. J. Michael Francis: Lost Voices from St. Augustine's Parish Archive

Join us for the final event in our celebration of Florida Archaeology Month with a talk from Dr. J. Michael Francis. Dr. Francis will introduce attendees to the oldest surviving parish records in the United States which come from St. Augustine, FL. He will highlight the early history of colonial Florida, focusing on the rich corpus of baptism, confirmation, marriage, and death records housed in St. Augustine's Diocesan Archive. He will share some of the remarkable stories that emerge from the badly damaged pages, and he will introduce a new digital archive that provides unparalleled public access to this unique collection. This presentation will be available for in-person attendance

(Register today) or for virtual attendance through a live stream over Zoom (Register to watch online). This program is proudly presented in partnership with the Tampa Bay History Center's Florida Conversations series.

This lecture series is located at the Weedon Island Preserve, 1800 Weedon Island Dr, St Petersburg, FL 33702

Florida Conversations is free and open to the public. It is underwritten by the Tampa Bay History Center Endowment Fund at the University of South Florida with media sponsorship from WUSF Public Broadcasting. The series is co-sponsored by USF Libraries and the Tampa Bay History Center. Online reservations are encouraged.

March 9, 2023: Kendal Jackson

Shell Mounds, Coastal Evolution, and Indigenous Engineering of Tampa Bay’s Inshore Bayous
Kendal Jackson
In this talk, Kendal Jackson discusses key findings from recent geological and archaeological investigations at several of Tampa Bay’s inshore bayous, including Double Branch Bay, Papy’s Bayou, Cockroach Bay, and Bishop Harbor. Drawing on data from 65 estuarine sediment cores and 38 excavations at Native shell-mound sites—including more than 100 new radiocarbon dates— Jackson outlines a new history of environmental transformation extending back ca. 30,000 years, including detailed sequences of estuary formation and transformation from ca. 6,500 years ago to the present. The new work reveals that millennia of shell-mound construction by ancestral Indigenous peoples substantially influenced the trajectory of inshore estuary development and continues to structure the character and distribution of tidal wetland habitats.

Kendal Jackson is a PhD candidate at the University of South Florida in Tampa. He works in both academic and applied settings, studying historical and ancient environments and how they have been altered and managed by past human societies. He received undergraduate and master’s degrees from USF and has worked at numerous archaeological sites throughout Florida.

HERE'S THE REGISTRATION LINK! Event to be held at New World Tampa Beer Garden, 810 Skagway Ave Tampa, FL 33604

This monthly CGCAS Archaeology Lecture series is sponsored by the Alliance for Weedon Island Archaeological Research and Education (AWIARE).

February 9, 2023: Theodora Light

Indian Slavery and Maronnage in Early Modern Florida
Theodora Light

This presentation analyses instances of Indian maronnage across La Florida and the circum-Caribbean during the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. As Indian slavery spread across the Spanish and English territories, distinct communities of displaced peoples appear across the historical record. Using the frameworks of maronnage, this presentation examines the role of these communities in the early colonial south.

Theodora Light is a PhD student in History at the University of Georgia. Her research centers on Indigenous Florida, particularly how Indian slavery affected Florida and the wider South during the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. She currently works as a graduate teaching assistant but has experience and training in the field of public history.

This monthly CGCAS Archaeology Lecture series is sponsored by the Alliance for Weedon Island Archaeological Research and Education (AWIARE).

January 12, 2023: Dr. John Arthur, Ph.D.

Beer - A Global Journey Through the Past and Present
Dr. John Arthur, Ph.D., USF, St. Petersburg

Ancient and contemporary beers from the Near East, Asia, Africa, Europe, and the Americas document the remarkable influence Indigenous beers have had in shaping the development of food production, state level societies, and is an essential food for contemporary Indigenous societies inspiring their social and economic actions. In the past and present beer was and is more than an intoxicating substance, it was and is an essential food integral to maintaining good health. Control over the technological knowledge and resources to produce beer created space for status differentiation and its use as capital motivated laborers. Beer also serves to unite people and connects the living with their ancestral past. This talk explores present and past non-industrial beers highlighting its significance in peoples’ lives through four themes: innovating new technologies, ensuring health and well-being, building economic and political statuses, and imbuing life with ritual and religious connections.

Dr. John W. Arthur is Professor of Anthropology at the University of South Florida St. Petersburg. Dr. Arthur was awarded the USF St. Petersburg Frank E. Duckwall Florida Studies Professorship (2020-2022) and was named a fellow in the illustrious Explorers Club. Dr. Arthur is a citizen of the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma. He has worked in Ethiopia since 1995 conducting ceramic ethnoarchaeological and Holocene archaeological research. Recently, he was part of a NSF sponsored research project that discovered a human burial dating to 4,500 years ago and led to the extraction of ancient DNA, sequencing for the first time an African ancient genome. This discovery was published in the premier journal Science (2015), with subsequent publications in the journals PNAS (2021) and Nature (2022). Dr. Arthur also has worked with the Gamo community in southern Ethiopia understanding the importance of beer in their daily and ritual lives. While investigating household ceramic assemblages in Gamo, he discovered how to interpret beer production in the ancient past, which has been documented in places such as Ethiopia, Sudan, United Kingdom, France and Mexico. Dr. Arthur has been invited to give talks in Japan, France, and Germany as well as prominent American institutions such as Rice University, Stanford University, and New York University. His new book, Beer – A Global Journey Through the Past and Present (2022) has been published by Oxford University Press. In addition to his Ethiopian research, Dr. Arthur has been excavating the shell mound at the Weeden Island site in Pinellas County, Florida. Dr. Arthur also serves as the President of the non-profit organization, Alliance for Weedon Island Archaeological Research and Education.

This monthly CGCAS Archaeology Lecture series is sponsored by the Alliance for Weedon Island Archaeological Research and Education (AWIARE).

December 2022: Martin Menz, M.A.

Hunter-Gatherer Settlement and Subsistence at Letchworth Mounds (8JE337)
Martin Menz, M.A., Doctoral Candidate, University of Michigan

The Letchworth site (8JE337) near Tallahassee is one of the largest Woodland period ceremonial centers in Florida. The site includes a 15-meter tall platform mound and several other low mounds, as well as a habitation area roughly 500-meters across. Despite its great size, Letchworth has received relatively little attention from archaeologists, in part due to the site’s low artifact density and poor preservation. In this presentation, I discuss the results from recent excavations in Letchworth’s habitation area, including evidence for domestic architecture and subsistence practices. I conclude by comparing the occupation at Letchworth with other hunter-gatherer ceremonial centers throughout the Eastern Woodlands.

Martin Menz is a University of Michigan graduate student studying domestic life at hunter-gatherer ceremonial centers during the Woodland period. He received his undergraduate and master's degrees from the University of South Florida and has worked at numerous sites throughout Florida and Georgia, including Crystal River, Kolomoki, and now Letchworth Mounds.

This monthly CGCAS Archaeology Lecture series is sponsored by the Alliance for Weedon Island Archaeological Research and Education (AWIARE).

November 17, 2022: Dr. Isabelle Holland-Lulewicz

Localized Histories of Calusa Ecology and Economy, Southwestern Florida, AD 1000 — 1500

Dr. Isabelle Holland-Lulewicz, Assistant Professor of Anthropology and Climate Science, Penn State University

Dr. Isabelle Holland-Lulewicz is an Assistant Professor of Anthropology and Climate Science at Penn State University. She is the director for the Socio-Ecological Histories of Estuarine Landscapes (SHEL) Lab with her primary research program focusing on human-environment dynamics in the US Southeast by way of paleoenvironmental reconstruction via zooarchaeological analyses of vertebrates and invertebrates, stable isotope analysis of marine shell, and chronological modeling of anthropogenic exploitations of estuarine environments.

Humans experience climate effects on scales that directly affect the availability of key subsistence resources, such as the location and abundance of fish populations. This is especially true for those populations that reside near and depend upon estuarine ecosystems where sea level change and/or changes in salinity can act as primary driving forces in the distribution and configuration of these ecosystems. The research presented here explores the local manifestations of global climate trends related to the Little Ice Age from AD 1000 — 1500 within two distinct estuarine systems in Florida, Charlotte Harbor/Pine Island Sound/San Carlos Bay and Estero Bay in Southwest Florida. It also combines this with an examination of the consequences of environmental change on economic strategies that in turn influence Indigenous sociopolitical and socioeconomic organization among the Calusa. This research utilizes high-resolution Bayesian chronological modeling, oxygen isotope geochemistry of incremental marine shell growth bands, and zooarchaeological analysis of vertebrate and invertebrate refuse at Mound Key (8LL2) and the Pineland Site Complex (8LL33, etc.), to examine local environmental conditions and evidence for deeply rooted ecological knowledge that supported complex socio-economic organization. Lastly, this presentation will examine evidence of a unique assemblage of burrfish remains recovered from archaeological deposits at Mound Key.

This monthly CGCAS Archaeology Lecture series is sponsored by the Alliance for Weedon Island Archaeological Research and Education (AWIARE).

October 2022: Dr. Neil Duncan

Fire and Water: Pre-Columbian landscape management in the Southwestern Amazon

Dr. Neil Duncan, Associate Professor, University of Central Florida

Recent investigations reveal that peoples of the Llanos de Mojos of Bolivia utilized hydrological engineering in the seasonally flooded savanna to modify the landscape for farming, fishing, and hunting. For thousands of years, people significantly transformed the landscape through raised fields, fish weirs, and inhabited forest islands that spread across some 100,000 km2 rivalling in scale and scope to contemporary Andean civilizations such as Chavín, Moche, Tiwanaku, and Inka. This presentation will explore the paleoethnobotanical (pollen, phytoliths, and diatoms) results of sediment coring in wetlands adjacent to these earthworks that document their early construction. In addition, we will explore recent findings about foodways from ceramics residues of foods from inhabited forest islands.

Dr. Neil Duncan is an associate professor at the University of Central Florida and directs the Paleoethnobotanical and Environmental Archaeology Laboratory. Dr. Duncan studies the interrelationships of food, culture, and environment in the past. His current work focuses on the Llanos de Mojos of Bolivia and Cape Canaveral, Florida, but has worked in Peru, Ecuador, Mexico, Colombia, and China.

This monthly CGCAS Archaeology Lecture series is sponsored by the Alliance for Weedon Island Archaeological Research and Education (AWIARE).

September 2022: Lori Lee

The Archaeology of Colonialism at Fort Mose: Forging Freedom Through Practice

Lori Lee, PhD, Associate Professor of Anthropology, Flagler College

Fort Mose was the first legally sanctioned free black community in North America. The Spanish governor of Florida guaranteed the legal freedom of self-emancipated Africans and African Americans if they converted to Catholicism, built and occupied a fort on the frontier of St. Augustine, and fought against Spanish enemies.

These soldiers created a multicultural community of African, African American, and indigenous families. This paper analyzes archaeological evidence and historical documents to investigate the daily practices people used to enact their freedoms in a location and time where those freedoms were contested.

Dr. Lori Lee is Kenan Distinguished Associate Professor of Anthropology at Flagler College. Her research examines the materiality of migration, health practices, and identity among African Diaspora populations.

This monthly CGCAS Archaeology Lecture series is sponsored by the Alliance for Weedon Island Archaeological Research and Education (AWIARE).

April 21, 2022 Speaker: Juliana Waters

Black Cemeteries Matter: Erasure of historic Black Cemeteries in Polk County, Florida
Juliana Waters, CRM archaeologist and master’s student in the Department of Applied Anthropology at the University of South Florida

In the past several years, the Tampa Bay area has experienced a reckoning with regard to the intentional erasure, destruction, and abandonment of historic African American cemeteries such as Zion Cemetery in Tampa or St. Matthews Baptist Church Cemetery in Clearwater. Scholars, journalists, community members, archaeologists, and others have contributed to a growing movement that aims to identify and document these sacred sites in an effort to prevent further destruction.

In this vein, this project aimed to identify and record cemeteries in Polk County, examine the processes leading to the erasure of historic Black cemeteries, the history surrounding erasure on a county scale, and to provide a framework for researching and documenting historic Black cemeteries in the Jim Crow South. Prior to this project, only four historic Black cemeteries were documented in the Florida Master Site File for Polk County, which records cultural resources and sites throughout Florida. The resulting efforts of this project produced documentation for an additional 60 historic cemeteries, 13 of which are historic African American cemeteries. Identification was completed through extensive archival research, property records, pedestrian survey, and community outreach.

Of the 13 newly documented burial grounds, three were determined to be unmarked and five were determined to have been erased or destroyed between the late 19th and mid-20th centuries resulting in their erasure from the modern landscape. Juliana's research suggests that the destruction of these sites is connected to industrial development throughout the county and these instances of erasure are representative of larger structural inequalities present throughout the Jim Crow South.

Juliana Waters (she/her) is a CRM archaeologist and master’s student in the Department of Applied Anthropology at the University of South Florida. Her research focuses on documenting Historic Black cemeteries in Polk County and exploring the socioeconomic and political factors that have contributed to their erasure from the modern landscape.

This program is sponsored by the Central Gulf Coast Archaeological Society, and the Alliance for Weedon Island Archaeological Research and Education.

March 17, 2022 Speakers: Sinibaldi and Trappmann

Ice Age Florida in Story and Art

Robert Sinibaldi, PhD (author) and Hermann Trappman (artist)

Florida’s Ice Age was vastly different from what the North experienced. Ice Age Florida: In Story and Art investigates the fascinating fossil record and prehistory of the Gulf Coast compared to what most envision when the term Ice Age comes up. The book opens with the logistics of the last ice age, then proceeds through the stories of over 25 animals, beginning with Titanis walleri at the beginning of the Ice Age and ending with Florida’s First Paleo-Peoples as the Ice Age comes to a close. Accompanying the dialog is the incredible illustrations and artwork of Hermann Trappman.

Robert Sinibaldi is an amateur paleontologist and the author of four books on paleontology. In 2012 he was the recipient of the prestigious Howard Converse Award from the University of Florida’s Paleontology Department for his contributions to the field of paleontology in Florida. In 2001 he was elected President of the Tampa Bay Fossil club, the world’s largest amateur paleontological association at the time, he remains on their board of directors to this time.

In the late 70’s Hermann Trappman studied art at the Haus der Kunst (House of Arts) in Munich Germany. His varied background includes work as a forensic artist for the medical examiner’s office in Pinellas County, graphic illustrator for the Florida Frontier Gazette, and artist for the Trail of Florida Indian Heritage brochures. His illustrations of Florida’s First Peoples have been exhibited throughout the southeast. Recently he created a series of illustrations for "TUSKS! Ice Age Florida Mammoths and Mastodons".

This program is sponsored by the Central Gulf Coast Archaeological Society, and the Alliance for Weedon Island Archaeological Research and Education.