July 23, 2021
Last December, it looked like the Oklahoma City Society was no more. All of the Society Officers had resigned because of health issues and no one had taken up the helm. When Dr. Joey Williams, a Lecturer at the University of Central Oklahoma, heard about this, he couldn’t let it happen. Together with his students, who had recently created their own archaeological group on campus, they worked together to revive the Oklahoma City Society. Joey tells us the full story below:
“Last year, my students at the University of Central Oklahoma expressed an interest in starting a campus organization related to archaeology since our university doesn’t have a formal archaeology program. The Archaeology Society at UCO started strong, despite the pandemic, and we hosted three visiting scholars on topics as diverse as Roman pottery from Oplontis, the ongoing investigation of the Tulsa Race Massacre, and the archaeology of anarchism in the American Southwest.
When we heard from the AIA that the local Oklahoma City Society was becoming dormant, we thought that reviving it represented a great opportunity to bring more archaeology to UCO and central Oklahoma. Support from the Department of Humanities and Philosophy and the UCO administration means that we can sponsor 15 new student memberships to the AIA, and our outreach to other local organizations (like the Oklahoma Anthropological Society, the Oklahoma Archeological Survey, and the Oklahoma Public Archaeology Network) means that our revived local Society can be immediately tied into the academic, avocational, and professional archaeological communities here in the state.
We’re planning several events for the fall, including hands-on artifact analysis workshops at UCO and nearby senior centers, more public lectures from visiting and local scholars, and a robust presence at the upcoming Oklahoma Archaeology Conference in the spring. My students are all excited to see what this new year brings for the AIA in Oklahoma.”
We’re extremely grateful to Joey and his students for resurrecting the Oklahoma City Society and are excited to see all that they accomplish in the next year!