State Archaeologist of Iowa logo

The mission of the Office of the State Archaeologist is to develop, disseminate, and preserve knowledge of Iowa's human past through Midwestern and Plains archaeological research, scientific discovery, public stewardship, service, and education.

FAQ & Common Inquiries

Frequently Asked Questions

Answers to some of the Office of the State Archaeologist's most common inquiries.

Artifact Identification

Assistance, guidance, and resources regarding the identification of archaeological artifacts from Iowa.
A student takes notes on an old foundation in the woods

Education and Interpretation

OSA offers statewide public programs, resources, and opportunities for people of all ages to understand and appreciate Iowa’s archaeological heritage and preserve it for the future.
photo of a student taking notes with a tray of artifacts sorted in front of her

Volunteer, Intern, Learn

Learn about volunteer, internship, or student research opportunities at the OSA.
An aerial photo of a large excavation block with archaeological tools scattered about

31,700 +

archaeological sites as of FY23

ancient pottery vessels displayed on a shelf

300 +

infrastructure projects
completed annually

A man in a neon yellow shirt digging a hole in a field

4 Million +

Objects in Curation


photo collage

OSA Fiscal Year 2023 Annual Report

Friday, November 3, 2023
One student crouched in an excavation unit, one laying on his stomach next to the unit

Updates from the 2023 Iowa Lakeside Laboratory Archaeological Field School

Tuesday, August 29, 2023


Iowa Archeological Society Annual Spring Meeting in Marquette, IA promotional image

Iowa Archeological Society Annual Spring Meeting in Marquette, IA

Saturday, April 27, 2024 8:00am
Driftless Area Wetlands Centre
Save the date for April 27, 2024, for the Iowa Archeological Society annual spring meeting! This year’s events will take place in northeast Iowa. We will hold morning presentations at the Driftless Area Wetlands Centre in Marquette, Iowa. IAS is partnering with Effigy Mounds National Monument for an afternoon field trip—stay tuned for details!
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Support the OSA

There are many ways to show your support for the OSA and its nationally-recognized outreach initiatives.