Integrating Research, Outreach, and Education at the Gipson Site

Greg Pierce


In the Fall of 2015 the Office of the Wyoming State Archaeologist (OWSA) conducted archaeological investigations at the Gipson site, a historic campsite located in the Laramie Mountains of Wyoming. This project was undertaken at the request of the property owners and successfully synthesized research, outreach, and education. During the field session twelve students and volunteers ranging in age from 10 to 60 conducted survey, metal detecting, and test excavations. Data collected from this work has the ability to give clarity to the nature of the 19th century occupation and will add to the understanding of railroad building activities in the West. However, the benefits of this project extend beyond the informational value the collected data provide. Through the integration of students from the University of Wyoming and local volunteers, including the property owners, the Gipson site investigations proved to be a successful public outreach and archaeological educational tool. This paper will provide background on the project and discuss the challenges and benefits of incorporating outreach and education into a standard research project.


Public Archaeology; American West; Archaeological Education

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Copyright (c) 2018 Greg Pierce

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ISSN: 2171-6315

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