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Indigenous Peoples in Pennsylvania History

Finding Books

Searching Terminology
Library catalogs use standard Library of Congress Subject Headings.  A few examples of the structure - you can modify terms (e.g. instread of Indians of North America-Pennsylvania-Antiquities you could look for a specific location or community)

  • Archaeology -- Moral and ethical aspects
  • Archaeology -- Northeastern States -- Methodology.
  • Cultural property -- Repatriation -- Northeastern States.
  • Excavations (Archaeology)—Pennsylvania
  • Excavations (Archaeology)—Susquehanna River Valley
  • Glacial epoch—Pennsylvania
  • Human remains (Archaeology) -- Repatriation -- Northeastern States.
  • Indians of North America—Pennsylvania—Antiquities
  • Indians of North America -- Pennsylvania -- Antiquities
  • Indians of North America -- Material culture
  • Indians of North America—Pennsylvania—History
  • Indians of North America—Pennsylvania—Social conditions
  • Northeastern States -- Antiquities.
  • Paleo-Indians—Pennsylvania
  • Pennsylvania—Antiquities
  • Pennsylvania -- History -- Colonial period, ca. 1600-1775.
  • United States. -- Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act

Articles and databases

Library Databases
Other Databases

Research Reports

Much archaeological research in the United States is produced within the field of Cultural Resource Management, not academic institutions. Documentation, research, and reporting is governed by regulations including but not limited to the National Historic Preservation Act (NHPA), the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act (NAGPRA). For more information see Cultural resource laws and practice (Thomas King, 2013).

Cultural Resource Management reports and site records are archived by each state. Archaeological site locations are restricted for a variety of reasons, including vulnerability to looting. In order to view Pennsylvania archaeological records individuals must meet certain criteria and apply to PA-SHARE: Pennsylvania Historical & Museum Commission PA-SHARE: Pennsylvania’s Historic & Archaeological Resource Exchange.

tDAR is an international digital repository for the digital records of archaeological investigations

Notes on Search Terminology:

- Many government sources spell archaeology without the second “a” (“archeology”), while academic and all other sources typically spell archaeology with the second “a” (archaeology). Searching for both spellings may produce more results.

- Problematically within the study of North American archaeology, indigenous archaeology has been historically referred to as “pre-historic” archaeology (as opposed to “historical archaeology”). This is problematic because it implied that indigenous people had no history or ceased to be indigenous or ceased to exist after the arrival of Europeans. Recently, scholars have begun using other terms such as “pre-contact” instead of “pre-historic”. However, the terms “prehistoric”/ “pre-historic” continue to be widely used. For a more detailed discussion see Panich and Schneider 2019.

- Archaeological sites in the US are assigned numbers called “trinomials” based on a system designed by the Smithsonian institution in the 1930s. For an explanation of this numbering system, and other numbering systems used for archaeological reporting see:

Initial content created by Alyssa Scott, 2022.