Mission and Scope

Mission Statement

The Anthropology and Archaeology Laboratory (AAL), established in 1985, is a research facility of the Department of Sociol and Cultural Analysis at Stephen F. Austin State University (SFASU). As an organized research unit of the Department, the AAL's main objectives are: (1) to provide student training and teaching opportunities in archaeology and anthropology through field and laboratory work on ongoing projects and to conduct archaeological research in Texas and adjacent regions using existing collections and through public outreach; (2) to provide outreach services that educate the general public about anthropology and archaeology; (3) to provide cultural resource management (CRM) services to federal, state, local, and private agencies as required by legislation and executive order; and (4) to furnish long-term care for collections that are "Held-in-Trust" for the people of Texas and the United States. The AAL houses complete facilities for processing artifact collections. The repository accommodates extensive collections of artifacts from prehistoric and historic sites in Texas.

Scope of Collections

The role of the AAL as an archaeological repository is one of many facets of its mission. Although originally designed to curate records and collections from the AAL's own projects, facilities now include the records and collections from other institutions, agencies, and individuals on a contracted basis. The AAL is primarily interested in collections from historic and prehistoric sites falling into regional or thematic areas already exemplified by our collections, such as historic Washington Square, Mission Dolores, and prehistoric hunter-gatherers and proto-historic Indians of greater east Texas. The AAL staff is in favor of consolidation of materials from sites previously curated in multiple repositories when these collections fit established thematic or regional areas. Records and artifacts are accepted with the understanding that primary usage is research by students, scholars, and other authorized persons. Acceptance of collections is primarily limited to greater east Texas, but the AAL will consider accepting collections from other areas when these collections benefit the overall research goals of students and faculty of SFASU.

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