Welcome to the Archaeological Society of South Carolina, Inc.

The Archaeological Society of South Carolina has been in operation since 1968. Our goal is to share information about South Carolina’s archaeological heritage. We do this through our annual conference, which is held in the Spring, a Fall Field Day event, a quarterly newsletter, and via the internet with this website and our Facebook page.

Interested in becoming a member? Each membership includes:
  • an annual copy of the journal, South Carolina Antiquities
  • the quarterly newsletter, Features and Profile
Get involved in archaeology by joining the Archaeological Society of South Carolina. Head over to our “Become a Member” page and sign up now!

ASSC 2020 Conference – Select Photos

Thank you to everyone who came out to the conference in February! The following are a few select photos from the conference. We are grateful to all all the presenters who came from far and wide to provide wonderful discussions, and to Jodi Barnes for her excellent keynote presentation and participation in panel discussion on avocational archaeology.

2020 Grant-in-Aid Deadline – March 20

Graduate students working on archaeology projects in South Carolina: the deadline for the 2020 program is March 20, 2020. Please visit our How to Apply page for information on how to submit an application.

About the Program
The Archaeological Society of South Carolina sponsors a Graduate Student Grant-in-Aid program to provide assistance to deserving graduate students furthering the cause of South Carolina archaeology. The Executive Committee appoints a qualified person as Chair of the current year’s Grant-in-Aid Committee. It is the Chair’s duty to appoint a review committee of two other qualified individuals to review student applications. The results of the committee’s selection are presented to the Executive Committee for approval. The amount available to grant under this project will vary by year.

2020 Conference Schedule

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8:15-9:00              Registration

8:45-9:00              Administrative Announcements; Welcome and Introduction by President Keith Stephenson

Morning Session
“Avocational Archaeology: The Role and Contributions of Avocational Archaeologists”

9:00-9:20              The Fisher Has A Good Cache: After 10 Years of Excavations, the Fisher Site 38BR1373 Reveals its First Cache, by Lamar Nelson (Avocational Archaeologist, Foothills Chapter, Archaeological Society of South Carolina)

9:20-9:40              Unlocking the Locks, Phase II, by Drew Ruddy (Avocational Archaeologist, Archaeological Society of South Carolina)

9:40-10:00           The Kolb Site (38DA75) Experience, by Ernest Helms (Avocational Archaeologist, Archaeological Society of South Carolina)

10:00-10:20         The Joy of Avocational Archaeology in South Carolina: A Personal Odyssey, by Robert C. Costello (Avocational Archaeologist, Archaeological Society of South Carolina, and USC Sumter)

10:20-10:40        PreContact Native American Pottery in the Robert Costello Collection, Santee River, South Carolina, by Christopher Judge (Native American Studies Center USC Lancaster) and Robert C. Costello (Avocational Archaeologist, Archaeological Society of South Carolina, and USC Sumter)

10:40-1100          Break

Keynote Presentation

11:00-11:45         Public Archaeology 2020: Arkansas as a Case Study, by Jodi A. Barnes (Arkansas Archeological Survey, University of Arkansas)

11:45-12:00         Presentation of Awards

12:00–1:30          Lunch

Afternoon Session

1:30-2:15              Panel–Avocational Archaeology: Methods, Contributions, and Concerns for the Future
Moderator: Joseph E. Wilkinson
Panelists: Lamar Nelson, David Gordon, Jodi A. Barnes, Nate Fulmer, Christopher Judge

2:15-2:35              Geochemical Characterization of Charleston Brick Production with pXRF, by Carolyn Dillian (Coastal Carolina University), David Palmer (Coastal Carolina University), Eric Poplin (Brockington), and Charlie Philips (Brockington)

2:35-2:55              Studying the Early Archaic Period in South Carolina Using Existing Projectile Point Typologies, by Albert C. Goodyear (South Carolina Institute of Archaeology and Anthropology), Andrew A. White (South Carolina Institute of Archaeology and Anthropology), and Joseph E. Wilkinson (South Carolina Department of Archives and History)

2:55-3:15              SUBMERGED: Underwater Archaeology in South Carolina for 8th Graders, by Ryan Bradley (South Carolina Institute of Archaeology and Anthropology’s Maritime Research Division)

3:15-3:35             Break

3:35-3:55             Preliminary Modeling of Clandestine Liquor Distillation Sites in the Francis Marion National Forest, by Katherine Parker (University of Tennessee)

3:55-4:15              Jettisoned: Recovery, Discovery, and History of the CSS Pee Dee Armament, by Jim Spirek, (South Carolina Institute of Archaeology and Anthropology’s Maritime Research Division)

4:15-4:35              Archaeology in the Congaree Creek Locality, Lexington County, South Carolina, and the Early History of the Archaeological Society of South Carolina, by David G. Anderson (University of Tennessee)

4:35-4:55              From Slavery to Empowerment: Update on Pro-Social Archaeology at Historic Brattonsville and Beyond, by J. Christopher Gillam and Richard J. Chacon (Winthrop University)

4:55-5:15              ASSC Business Meeting

5:15-5:35             Concluding remarks by President Stephenson

2020 Conference Keynote Speaker: Jodi Barnes

We’re excited to announce that Dr. Jodi A. Barnes will be our keynote speaker for the 2020 Annual Conference!

Jodi A. Barnes is an Associate Research Professor and Research Station Archeologist with the Arkansas Archeological Survey, a unit of the University of Arkansas system. She earned a Ph.D. in Anthropology from American University in Washington, DC and a Graduate Certificate in Women and Gender Studies and B.A. in Anthropology from the University of South Carolina.


After completing a Post-Doctoral Fellowship at the University of South Carolina, she worked as the Staff Archaeologist for the South Carolina State Historic Preservation Office. Her current research focuses on the archaeologies of health and foodways at 19th century Hollywood Plantation and the material life of Camp Monticello, a World War II Italian prisoner of war camp. She is the editor of a thematic issue on the intimate archaeologies of World War II in the journal Historical Archaeology (2018) and The Materiality of Freedom (2011) and co-editor of Managing Cultural Resources: Global Context, National Programs, Local Actions (2008).

Presentation: Public Archaeology 2020: Arkansas as a Case Study
Jodi A. Barnes, Arkansas Archeological Survey

As the first formal public archaeology program in the United States, the Arkansas Archeological Survey “mutually assist[s] and cooperate[s] with the Arkansas Archeological Society in furthering the purposes of public archaeological education.” Founded in 1868, state legislation encourages the two organizations to work together. From the Annual Training Program, the certification and stewardship programs, the Endangered African-American Cemeteries Initiative, Archeology Month, and on-going programs at the ten regional offices, Arkansas archeologists involve the public in citizen science — collecting data, advancing scientific knowledge, and preserving the past. In this talk, Dr. Barnes will provide an overview of the history of Arkansas archeology and the ways advocationalist archaeologists have shaped the organization with recommendations for the future of public archaeology.

46th Annual Conference on South Carolina Archaeology – February 15, 2020

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WHEN: February 15, 2020
WHERE: Gambrell Hall, 817 Henderson Street
Columbia, S.C. 29208
TIME: 9 AM – 4 PM (time may be subject to change), Registration opens at 8:15 AM
COST: free for 2020 members, $10 for non-members. membership renewals/new applications will be taken at registration
The theme of this year’s conference is Avocational Archaeology. We will have presentations and discussions about avocational contributions to archaeology in the state of South Carolina. Including the conference theme, there will also be papers on historic and prehistoric archaeology in the state of South Carolina and across the Southeast.
Interested in presenting at the conference? Please email archaeologysocietysc@gmail.com with the name(s) of all contributors to the presentation, your paper title, and brief abstract by February 3, 2020.
Registration for the conference will be on site and free for current ASSC members, $10 for non-members. We will be signing up new members and taking membership renewals during the conference. For full membership details please visit https://archaeologysc.org/membership/

Call for Papers: 2020 ASSC Conference

We are currently accepting abstracts for the 46th Annual Conference on South Carolina Archaeology. The conference will be held on Saturday, February 15th, 2020 in Columbia, SC. 

Each year the society holds a conference on South Carolina archaeology, focusing on the archaeological work being done within the state. In past years, the conferences has included professional presentations from professors and students from various colleges and universities in the South, local cultural resource management firms, nonprofessional archaeological enthusiasts, and more. 

We welcome not only general conference presentations, but also panel discussions, video, talkbacks, or other alternatives that would fit within our conference. 

Please send your abstracts to archaeologysocietysc@gmail.com by January 20th, 2020. 

Fall Field Day Schedule!

tourPlan your day with us!

Event Schedule
Hourly Fire Demonstration with Fuz Sanderson
10:15 AM – Bobby McLeod Musket Fire Demo*
10:30 AM – 11:30 AM – Archaeological Tour of the Fort Congaree Site with Archaeologist James Stewart**
11:30 AM – 12:00 AM – 12,000 Years of History with Scott Jones
12:45 PM – Bobby McLeod Musket Fire Demo*
1:00 PM – 2:00 PM – Civil War Battlefield Tour**
2:00 PM – 2:30 PM – 12,000 Years of History with Scott Jones

*Musket demo will involve loud noise. Please exercise caution during these times at the event if any attendees or animals are sensitive to loud noises. There may be additional demonstrations added during the day.

**Tour begins at the back of the event. Please talk to a person on staff to help direct you to the starting area. The tour is approximately a little over two miles long for the Battlefield Tour and nearly three miles for the archaeological tour. Please bring comfortable walking shoes and water. The entire tour is on a shaded paved pathway.