Our High School Field School is your opportunity to be an archaeologist. Join our summer field crew and participate in real archaeological research alongside professional archaeologists. With our staff, you will learn how to do fieldwork, laboratory work, identify artifacts, and more as we investigate the Golden Eagle site.
HSFS 2015 students excavating at Golden Eagle.
In 2018, we will continue fieldwork at the Golden Eagle site, the only prehistoric site in the Illinois River Valley with a geometric enclosure. In 2013 and 2014, CAA archaeologists conducted large-scale remote sensing surveys across the site, revealing intact archaeological deposits, as well as geophysical evidence of the ditch-and-embankment structure enclosing the site. Excavations of Golden Eagle began in 2014 with initial testing of the ditch-and-embankment, revealing evidence of building sequences. Excavation in 2016 tested mound 2 and the surrounding area. By participating in High School Field School, you will help archaeologists understand what people were doing at this site thousands of years ago and how the site was formed.
Check the results from our 2015 and 2016 field seasons.
Students 13-17 may enroll for one to four weeks. Weeks enrolled need not be consecutive. No experience is necessary. High school seniors may enroll, but graduated seniors should enroll in Adult Field School.
High School Field School 2017 students washing artifacts.
While in Kampsville, students participate in field and laboratory work with CAA archaeologists. Students learn excavation techniques, including shoveling, troweling, mapping, measuring, soil description, and flotation sampling. Lab work includes artifact washing, identification, and flotation. These activities are supplemented by occasional evening lectures by CAA archaeologists and guest archaeologists on various archaeological topics. Evening activities may include hikes and activities related to prehistoric lifeways. The day usually begins at 7 am with breakfast and ends by 9 pm.
Please see the High School Field School Schedule and Gear List for program details.
Students staying for more than one week can do laundry, visit local cultural sites, and relax on the weekends. Weekends are fully supervised. While we do not have regular food service on the weekends, breakfast and lunch foods are available. We cook out or eat at a local restaurant for dinner. Students should bring spending money.
HSFS 2017 students screening soil.
Students should arrive on the Sunday and depart the Saturday after their program ends.
Parents are responsible for arranging their child’s transportation to and from Kampsville. Shuttle service from Lambert-St. Louis International Airport (St. Louis, MO) or the Alton, Illinois Amtrak station is available for an additional cost
Tuition includes room; all meals Monday through Friday; supplies, and instruction. Students may enroll for any number and combination of weeks.
Scholarship support for girls is available through our Women in Archeology Scholarship program.
Scholarships are also available to all through our Kampsville Legacy Scholarship program.