1000 East University Avenue, Department 3431
Laramie, Wyoming 82071
Fax (307) 766-3693
Guidelines and fee information
University of Wyoming Archaeological Repository And Curation Facility (UWAR)
Located on the campus of the University of Wyoming in Laramie, the UWAR functions jointly under the
Department of Anthropology
, University of Wyoming, and the Office of the Wyoming State Archaeologist, Wyoming Department of State Parks and Cultural Resources. The Department of Anthropology at the University of Wyoming has been an archaeological repository for over 50 years. Today the University Of Wyoming Archaeological Repository (UWAR) is estimated to contain more than two million items from at least 20,000 sites found throughout the state. This represents the single largest assembly of archaeological materials in Wyoming. The UWAR is a federally designated repository for archaeological collections recovered from Wyoming's public lands, which cover approximately half of the 97,014 square miles in the state. UWAR also houses extensive collections from state and private lands. These data have been, and continue to be, the basis for scholarly interpretations about human activity spanning over 11,500 years of occupation on the High Plains and Rocky Mountains.
Archaeological research on existing collections is most efficiently performed when assemblages are properly organized and maintained at academic institutions. These collections represent material remains from prehistoric and early historic sites which are fragile, nonrenewable resources. Once sites are excavated or otherwise destroyed, they are gone forever, except for the physical evidence (artifacts) and excavation records produced through formal, archaeological investigations. Artifacts, field notes, and provenience data must be kept in an organized manner ensure their long term survival. As archaeologists, we are stewards of these resources. It is our professional responsibility to provide the best collections management possible to enhance the availability of these materials for scientific research.
Collections Management Activities
The University of Wyoming Archaeological Repository only curates archaeological collections from Wyoming. A memorandum of understanding (MOU) establishes the relationship between the University of Wyoming and the State Archaeologist's Office. The MOU is a part of the curation agreement which has stipulations and requirements for each contractor wanting to curate materials at the repository. To obtain federal or state collecting permits (necessary before curation at UWAR), contact the following agencies:
Wyoming Bureau of Land Management in Cheyenne, Wyoming at (307) 775-6108.
Bureau of Reclamation in Casper, Wyoming at (307) 261-5671.
State of Wyoming in Cheyenne, Wyoming at (307) 777-6629.
United States Forest Service: contact the local District Ranger Office
The repository is conducting a box by box and item by item inventory of all archaeological collections stored at UWAR. It is estimated this project will take at least another 30 years. Once the project is completed, these data will be available on this web site for read only access with permission. We hope availability will help the researcher, and should reduce the time needed to look at the collections and associated records. Most, if not all, of the information will be available on the web page before the researcher contacts the curation staff.
Conservation of the material and associated records stored at UWAR and how we can best access the information is the ultimate goal of the inventory process.