Skip to Main Content














You are in the main content
Cover Photo Image

Points of Contact: The Archaeology of Indian-Spanish Interaction During the Colonial Era


Telfair and Dougherty Counties, Georgia, USA

Program Description

The field school will entail archaeological exploration of two Native American Indian villages that experienced “contact” with Spanish explorers and colonizers during the 16th and 17th centuries, including the infamous conquistador, Hernando de Soto.

An overriding goal will be to build the competence of students in archaeological field methods including mapping, methods of excavation and documentation, and basic lab procedures. Students will also be exposed to the process of geophysical survey.

Four weeks will be spent at a large, pristine site near Albany, GA that probably served as the capital town of a Native province called Capachequi. Its importance is signified by the presence of three large, earthen mounds. Archaeological activity will involve documentation of the size and configuration of the town, as well as determining its history of occupation.

The final two weeks will involve exploration of specific details of an Indian community called the Glass Site near Jacksonville, GA. The field school will address new questions that have arisen, one about the possibility of a late 16th-century episode of European contact, and another about the function of a large subterranean pit.

Location Description

This archaeological field school will take place on two archaeological sites located in southern Georgia (USA). Each is located in a rural area featuring classic southern wetlands, pine forests, and lazy streams. Wildlife is abundant, including many species of birds, reptiles, and amphibians. Students will also be immersed in Deep South culture, lending a different kind of anthropological dimension to the experience.


Dennis Blanton | | Sociology & Anthropology


First four weeks: motel arrangements in Albany, GA

Final two weeks: camping on-site near Jacksonville, GA

The cost of all meals is included.

First four weeks: breakfast at motel, simple lunch provided in field, and dinners at local restaurants.

Final two weeks: all meals prepared and enjoyed by students, community style, in the field camp.

Additional Items to Consider

Field and living conditions will be demanding. Students must be prepared for physical activity in a hot, humid environment.

Working and living conditions require patience, respect, and full participation.

Applicant Criteria

Applicants must have a GPA minimum of 2.0

Application Process

This list serves as an application preview. To apply, students will need to complete the following:

  • Study Abroad Online Application ($25 fee)
  • Short essay 
  • Faculty Recommendation
  • Official transcript required for non-JMU and first semester transfer students.

Further details and instructions about these application requirements will be available upon log-in. 

apply now

Application Deadline


All dates are tentative and subject to change


ANTH 494: Field Techniques in Archaeology (6 credits)

Courses listed here are to be used as a general guideline for program curriculum. *All courses are considered pending until approved by the Academic Department, Program, and/or College.