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Resources: A Starting Point

The potential list of resources that could support archaeology work and the archaeological community in Colorado is vast and varied. For a field as diverse as archaeology, any list of resources can only serve as a starting point. This section provides such a starting point with resources for communities, non-profit groups, volunteers, government agencies, property owners, or anyone else looking to get involved in preserving cultural landscapes and archaeological sites. The resources are divided into three categories: 

Primary  Resources  and  Technical  Assistance. Where can you learn more about the programs featured in this report? Who can you contact for technical assistance related to archaeology and cultural resource management?


Grants and Funding.  Where can you find more information about available grants and other sources of funding to support archaeological work?


Other Potential Collaborators.  Beyond the main organizations discussed in this report, what other entities are good potential collaborators on efforts to preserve cultural  landscapes  and  sites? 



History Colorado

The State Historic Preservation Office (SHPO) at History Colorado administers state and federal rehabilitation tax credits, the National Register of Historic Places, the State Register of Historic Places, and programs in Colorado related to Section 106, Section 110, NAGPRA, the Certified Local Government (CLG) program, and other regulatory processes.


State Historical Fund (SHF) 

The Grant Guidebook (updated January 2020) provides information and guidance regarding SHF grants, funding cycles, and related information. The guide details the types of grants available, the types of efforts they fund, and tips for a successful application. Commonly, archaeology projects can be awarded grants under the Archaeology competitive grant and the Archaeological Assessments non-competitive grant, although archaeology work may be completed as part of another grant type.


Colorado Commission of Indian Affairs (CCIA)

The CCIA is the official liaison between the State of Colorado and the Southern Ute Indian Tribe and the Ute Mountain Ute Tribe and is charged with facilitating communication, developing strong government-to-government relationships, and working with Colorado’s two resident Ute tribes. 

Ute Mountain Ute Tribe and Southern Ute Indian Tribe

The Ute Mountain Ute Tribe has a Tribal Preservation Officer (THPO) to preserve, promote, sustain, and document the cultural heritage of the Ute people on all Ute Ancestral Lands. The Southern Ute Indian Tribe has a dedicated NAGPRA office, with staff who perform many of the same functions as a THPO.  Both tribes are heavily involved with education, events, and consultation on management of historic properties and cultural resources, including through the National Registers of Historic Places, Section 106 reviews, and repatriation of ancestral remains.

Colorado Preservation, Inc. (CPI).  

The state’s largest nonprofit promoting historic preservation, including the preservation of cultural resources, through advocacy, education, outreach, and preservation services to communities and individuals. Key programs include Colorado’s Most Endangered Places, the Saving Places Conference, and resources on tax credits and key organizations in historic preservation and archaeology. The CPI website contains links to dozens of resources. 


Colorado  Archaeological  Society  (CAS)

The CAS is a non-profit organization committed to the stewardship of archaeological resources in Colorado through education, research, conservation, advocacy, and enhanced opportunities for responsible participation in archaeology for interested individuals and organizations. CAS has nine official local chapters and two affiliated local chapters, is central to History Colorado’s PAAC Program, and supports public education of professionals, avocationalists, and the public of topics in archaeology. 


Colorado Council of Professional Archaeologists (CCPA)

The CCPA is a professional organization for people concerned with the preservation, recovery, and interpretation of Colorado’s prehistoric and historic archaeological resources. The professional archaeologists, college professors, and students that make up the organization collaborate on research, supporting scholarships, and providing educational and professional development opportunities to members. A prominent example of research conducted by the group was the creation of six context documents that summarize the state of Colorado’s prehistoric and historic archaeology.


Colorado Historical Foundation (CHF)

The CHF is a private, nonprofit organization that supports history and preservation projects statewide. The Foundation carries out the historic preservation Revolving Loan Fund for Colorado and an active statewide preservation easements  program.


Crow  Canyon  Archaeological  Center

The Research Institute at Crow Canyon is an interdisciplinary network of scholars working on long-term archaeological research, education about humans past and present, research partnerships with Native Americans, and other big questions and topics. The collaborative team of archaeologists, economists, geographers, sociologists, educators, indigenous culture specialists, and others leverage more than three decades of archaeological inquiry—and an extensive database—in support of research of the human past and its impact on society’s path forward. 


Paleocultural Research Group (PCRG)

PCRG is a non-profit research and education organization that conducts research, trains students, and educates the public on archaeology. PCRG also hosts the Online Resources for Colorado Archaeology (ORCA) – a clearinghouse of resources, information, and tools for archaeological research, cultural resources management, and heritage education in Colorado. 


Dominquez Archaeological Research Group (DARG)

DARG is a non-profit consortium for anthropological and archaeological research, preservation, and education in the Upper Colorado River Basin. National Trust for Historic Preservation.  The organization maintains a comprehensive, up-to date website with a wide range of resources relating to technical support, funding, advocacy, and more.


American  Anthropological  Association  (AAA)

The AAA is the world’s largest organization of scholarly and professional anthropologists – with roughly 75 percent of members being either students or employees in higher education and roughly 25 percent of members working in the public, private, and non-governmental sectors. The AAA has 40 sections, each reflecting specialized domains of knowledge, and publishes 22 journals. The AAA provides support and services in professional development, education, prizes and fellowships, internships, conferences, and collaborative research with other professional organizations.


Society for American Archaeology (SAA)

The SAA is an international organization dedicated to the research, interpretation, and protection of the archaeological heritage of the Americas. With about 7,500 professional, student, and avocational archaeologist members, the SAA supports research, resource conservation efforts, and ethical education and standards for the archaeological community. The SAA produces publications, advocates for government policies, produces materials for education and public outreach, and supports member research and professional development.

Society for Historical Archaeology (SHA)

The SHA promotes scholarly research and the dissemination of knowledge concerning historical archaeology – archaeology of the modern world (A.D. 1400 to present). The SHA produces publications, hosts professional development opportunities, produces research and resources for professionals, educators, and students.

Plains Anthropological Society (PAS)

The PAS is a nonprofit organization and professional society that promotes the study of the peoples and cultures of the North American Great Plains. The PAS focuses on research and dissemination of information about the physical, cultural, archaeological, and linguistic variation, and evolution of Plains societies. The PAS actively encourages and recognizes excellence in scholarship, service to the anthropological community, and the maintenance of research collections.


Local governments and non-profit organizations

Even communities without an archaeologist on staff or a dedicated historic preservation program have knowledgeable staff that can often answer questions about local programs, funding sources, and regulations. Many towns, cities, and regions in Colorado have nonprofit organizations that offer technical assistance, funding, and advocate for historic preservation, which may include preservation of archaeological sites and cultural landscapes. 

Grants and Funding
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Government agencies and organizations are major supporters of archaeology and cultural resource management efforts. The list below shows some of the most prominent sources for grant-funding:


  • State Historical Fund (SHF)  

  • Colorado Historical Foundation Revolving Loan Fund

  • Certified Local Government Grants

  • Colorado’s  Cultural  and  Heritage  and  Agritourism Program (CHAMP)  

  • Colorado Department of Local Affairs (DOLA)

  • Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (Brownfields  Program)

  • Colorado Brownfields Partnership

  • Colorado Division of Reclamation and Mining Safety

Private Organizations (such as):

  • Archaeological Institute of America (AIA)   

  • Andrew W. Mellon Foundation  

  • Colorado Plateau Cooperative Ecosystem Studies Unit (CPCESU)

  • Curtiss T. and Mary G. Brennan Foundation

  • Earthwatch

  • Henry Luce Foundation

  • National Trust for Historic Preservation (NTHP)

  • Rocky Mountain Cooperative Ecosystem Studies Unit (RMCESU)

  • Rust Family Foundation

  • Wenner-Gren Foundation

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Beyond the main organizations discussed above, the following agencies and organizations are potential collaborators on archaeology and cultural resource management efforts:

Other Potential Collaborators

Economic Development and Tourism

  • Advisory Council on Historic Preservation (ACHP)

  • Colorado Scenic and Historic Byways Commission (CDOT)

  • Colorado Tourism Office (CTO)

  • National Heritage Areas (supported by NPS)

  • National Scenic Byways Program (supported by FHA)

  • National Trust for Historic Preservation (NTHP)

  • Local and regional community foundations (e.g., Yampa Valley Community Foundation, Alma Foundation, Summit Foundation)



Resources Highlighted Projects

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