Tennessee Archaeology Awareness Week :: Tennessee Archaeology Network

Tennessee Archaeology Network

The Central Information Source
for Tennessee Archaeology

First Place Award for TAAW 1996

Tennessee Archaeology Awareness Week

Humans have occupied the Tennessee landscape for more than 12,000 years, leaving behind a rich and diverse record of their lifestyles and cultures in archaeological sites. These archaeological sites are unique and irreplaceable resources providing educational, scientific, and economic benefits for all citizens.

In recognition of the importance of Tennessee's archaeological heritage, the state legislature created an official "Tennessee Archaeology Awareness Week (TAAW)" in 1995 (Acts 1995, ch. 91, Part 1). The legislation designated the special week to "promote the archaeological heritage of Tennessee."

From 1996-2006, the Tennessee Division of Archaeology, Department of Sociology and Anthropology at Middle Tennessee State University, and the Tennessee Historical Commission have cooperatively sponsored and coordinated events during one week in September.

Events and programs during the week are designed to bring our state's colorful past to life for all ages. By sponsoring an annual event like TAAW, we hope to stimulate pride in this heritage by increasing public understanding of the wealth of exciting information produced annually by Tennessee's archaeologists.

With our rapid urban and suburban growth, more and more of our archaeological sites are damaged or destroyed each year. Only through public awareness and involvement can we slow the pace of destruction and save some of our archaeological resources for future generations to appreciate. While we can replant a new tree for each one cut down, we can never recreate an ancient culture once the last site of that era has been destroyed.

Join us during this week to celebrate our rich heritage--attend a lecture, visit an exhibit, tour an archaeological site, learn how to identify archaeological objects, and discover ways to protect and preserve your local heritage.

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