“Sunken Treasures from Ancient Egypt” – VMFA exhibition opening lecture, July 9

Photo: Jérôme Delafosse © Franck Goddio/Hilti Foundation

On Thursday, July 9 at 5 pm, Franck Goddio, Founder and President of the European Institute for Underwater Archaeology, will present (online) the opening lecture for the Treasures of Ancient Egypt: Sunken Cities exhibition at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts.

Register here: https://www.vmfa.museum/calendar/events/opening-talk-sunken-treasures/.

Business Meeting Thurs. 5/14



We are sorry that we have had to cancel the rest of our spring programming due to COVID-19 but are looking ahead to next year. On Thursday, May 14 at 4 pm, we will have our annual spring business meeting via Zoom video/phone conference. All members are welcome to join the meeting, and we especially encourage anyone who would like to get more involved in leadership and organization of our local AIA society. At the business meeting, we will discuss plans for next year’s lectures and events and elect new officers.

Anyone who would like to attend can request the Zoom link by sending an email to ebaughan@richmond.edu. Please also send an email if you are interested in becoming a board member or officer or if you have any questions about the AIA and the Richmond society.

CANCELLED – Lecture on Thurs. 3/19



Our next lecture will be presented by Dr. Hilary Becker, Assistant Professor of Classical and Near Eastern Studies at Binghamton University, on Thursday, March 19 at 6 pm in Jepson Hall 118 at the University of Richmond:

“The Iconography of a Life in Arms: The Etruscan Soldier at War, at Home, and at the Tomb.”

Dr. Becker is co-editor of Votives, Places and Rituals in Etruscan Religion (2009) and the AIA’s Ferdinando And Sarah Cinelli Lecturer In Etruscan And Italic Archaeology for 2019/2020.

Co-sponsored by the Richmond Society of the Archaeological Institute of America and the UR Department of Classical Studies, the lecture will be free and open to the public.

Lecture on water in the Eleusinian Mysteries, Thurs. 2/13 at UR

Dylan Rogers AIA Flyer

On Thursday, February 13 at 6 pm in Jepson Hall room 103 at the University of Richmond, Dr. Dylan Rogers (visiting professor of archaeology at the University of Virginia) will present “Water and Sensory Experience: Reconstructing the Procession of the Eleusinian Mysteries.” Rogers served as Assistant Director of the American School of Classical Studies at Athens from 2015-2019 and is the author of Water Culture in Roman Society (Brill, 2018) and co-editor of What’s New in Roman Greece? (National Hellenic Research Foundation, 2018).

Co-sponsored by the Richmond Society of the Archaeological Institute of America and the UR Department of Classical Studies, the lecture will be free and open to the public.

November lecture change: “Death and Remembering: A New Interpretation of the Ceremonial Center of Tibes, Ponce, Puerto Rico”

There has been a change of speaker and topic for our November lecture, though the date, time, and location remain the same. On Thursday, Nov. 14 at 6 pm in Jepson Hall 103 at the University of Richmond, Dr. Antonio Curet (Curator, National Museum of the American Indian) will present Death and Remembering: A New Interpretation of the Ceremonial Center of Tibes, Ponce, Puerto Rico”

Tibes air photo .jpg

The site of Tibes, located in southern Puerto Rico, is the oldest known ceremonial center in the Caribbean. The structures, changes in mortuary practices, and settlement pattern documented at Tibes have been interpreted to represent one of the earliest stratified societies in the region, the focus of administrative, residential, and/or ritual activities. However, a combination of new and previous information is forming a different, more complex and intricate view of the social and political history of the site. This presentation includes a brief review of Puerto Rican archaeology, a summary of the finds of the Archaeological Project of the Ceremonial Center of Tibes, and a new perspective in understanding the processes involved in the ancient history of the site

Directions and parking:
Jepson Hall is #221 on the UR campus map. Visitor parking is available after 5 pm in all lots. For Google Map or GPS directions, use 221 Richmond Way, Richmond, VA 23173.

Volunteer excavation at UR – Sat., Nov. 2



A few weeks ago landscapers at the University of Richmond found a deposit of pottery and glass that appears to belong to the early 20th century, when this land was Westhampton Park at the end of the streetcar line. Since then, students in the ‘Introduction to Archaeology’ class have been excavating the site, right outside Maryland Hall. AIA members and friends are invited to join us this Saturday, November 2, from 9 am – 12 noon. Volunteers are needed to help complete the excavation soon, before the landscapers need to finish their work!

(Maryland Hall is #110 on the campus map, or 110 UR Drive.)

Archaeology Day at East End Cemetery


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Celebrate International Archaeology Day 2019 by joining AIA Richmond Society, Friends of East End, Oakwood Arts, and other community members in the volunteer effort to restore East End Cemetery, a historic African American burial ground in Henrico County.

Saturday, October 19, 2019, 9 am – 12 noon

For more information and directions, see https://eastendcemetery.wordpress.com.

For rain cancellation, check https://www.facebook.com/EastEndCemeteryProject/ 

“Ruined Gardens of Babylon” lecture on October 3


Our first lecture of the academic year will be presented by Dr. Ömür Harmanşah, Associate Professor of Art History at the University of Illinois, Chicago, and director of the Yalburt Yaylası Archaeological Landscape Research Project.

What does it mean to practice archaeology in the new age of the Anthropocene? In “Ruined Gardens of Babylon: Dark Ecology and Heritage Politics in the Middle East,” Dr. Harmanşah will discuss his current research on the politics, ethics, and methodologies of doing archaeological fieldwork in the Middle East today, at the very critical moment of global ecological crisis, climate change, military conflict, mass immigration, and heritage violence. Recent military violence in the Middle East has led to unprecedented destruction of cultural heritage along with local settlements and habitats, and the displacement of their communities. The ecological-military crisis has a direct impact on how archaeology is practiced as a field science. The destruction of heritage sites, landscapes, and institutions demands archaeologists either work remotely or perform salvage work, as opposed to more conventional methods of working with scientific research questions.

The lecture will be held on Thursday, October 3 at 6 pm in Jepson Hall, room 103, at the University of Richmond (please note the change from our usual room). The building is #221 on and campus map; for GPS directions, use the following address: 221 Richmond Way, Richmond, VA, 23173. The lecture is co-sponsored by the University of Richmond Department of Classical Studies and will be free and open to the public.

Pompeii in Richmond!


Several of our members will be speaking in the “Lunch Break Science” series at the Science Museum of Virginia this summer, in connection with the special exhibition of Pompeii: The Immortal City (on view through Sept. 3):

Wed., July 10 – “Roman Dining, from Eggs to Apples” (Dr. Elizabeth Baughan, University of Richmond)

Wed., July 31 – “Making the Old New Again: New Technologies to Understand Ancient Art” (Dr. Peter Schertz, Virginia Museum of Fine Arts”)

Wed., August 7 – “Health and Disease in Pompeii” (Dr. Julie Laskaris, University of Richmond)

The lectures are free, noon – 1 pm. For more information and the full schedule (including several other archaeological topics), click here.