Who We Are

The Archaeological Conservancy is a national 501(c)(3) non-profit organization dedicated to acquiring and preserving archaeological sites discovered on private land.


What We Do

We identify, acquire, secure, and manage the archaeological site as part of a long-term preservation plan. We also engage with and educate the general public about the preservation of our cultural heritage.


How We Do It

We depend on donations, gifts and grants for the funding needed for preservation. As a supporter, you become a member of the Conservancy and receive a subscription to American Archaeology Magazine.



Our Magazine

Published quarterly, American Archaeology a popular magazine devoted to the excitement and mystery of archaeology in the U.S. & North America – including Canada and Latin America. 


From 'American Archaeology' Magazine

Craig Lee (left) and his colleagues Jay Kyne and Ben Woods start to drill an ice core. This is the only invasive technique the researchers employ. Photo INSTAAR/ Jennie Borresen Lee.

2015: By Tamara Stewart.  In 2007, archaeologist Craig Lee recovered an incredibly preserved, delicately carved birch spear-throwing foreshaft from a melting ice patch north of...

The most recent issue of American Archaeology Magazine, WINTER 2015 , is now available. COVER: Researchers stabilize a drill in preparation of coring an ice...

Featured Conservancy Sites

Southwest Regional Director Jim Walker Examining the site

Preserving this endangered archaeological site has been a long term project for the Conservancy. Your gift of $25, $50, $100 or more for the...
This chert biface tool was found at the site.

Last winter the Siemer family contacted the Conservancy about buying their property in northeast California. The Siemers own 300 acres that are located on...

Explore the Wonders of the Past

From the remote jungles of Honduras to the pristine rivers of the American Southwest, our archaeological tours promise exciting adventure. Whether you like touring Maya temples or learning about North American rock art, you’ll be sure to find a Conservancy tour that fits your interest. For more than 20 years, the Conservancy has conducted tours ranging in length from four days to two weeks. Expert guides always accompany our tours, providing unique insights about the places we visit. Tour regions include the American Midwest, Southeast, and Southwest, as well as Mexico and Central and South America. Click here to see all our tours >>

September 12-20, 2015 Info

DSC_0522 FB Chaco KIvaExplore the vast cultural system of Chaco Canyon and the extensive network of outlying communities that developed in northwestern New Mexico and southwestern Colorado from A.D. 800 to 1140.  We’ll visit Pueblo Bonito and other spectacular great houses in Chaco Canyon as well as the great kiva at Casa Rinconada.  We’ll also have the unique opportunity to visit many of the most important outlying communities that are integral parts of the entire Chacoan complex still being uncovered by researchers.  Scholars are still struggling to understand how this vast system developed and operated, and why it suddenly collapsed in about A.D. 1130.  To complete the experience, we will tour the modern day Pueblo of Acoma and spend two memorable nights camping in Chaco Canyon.  Some of the leading Chaco experts will join us.

September 17– 27, 2015 Info

DSC_0791They rank among the most amazing archaeological sites anywhere: walls and windows, towers and kivas, all tucked neatly into sandstone cliffs.  More than 700 years ago, the Anasazi and Sinagua cultures of the Four Corners region called these cliff dwellings home.  Today, amidst the scenery of Arizona and Colorado, our tour presents the most famous of the region’s cliff dwellings, as well as modern-day pueblos and several Conservancy preserves.  Archaeologists well-versed in the region’s prehistory will accompany the tour.

September 12-20, 2015 Info

Oaxaca_slide_03Join us in Oaxaca, Mexico, during one of the most unusual festivals anywhere – the Day of the Dead.  On this day, people prepare home altars and cemeteries to welcome the dead, who are believed to return to enjoy the food and drink they indulged in during life.  Not at all a morbid occasion, the town is filled with celebration. Oaxaca lies in a semitropical valley surrounded by the peaks of the Sierra Madre del Sur.  The city’s architecture reflects its rich Spanish Colonial and modern history.  Vast ruins of the Ancient Mixtecan and Zapotecan civilizations lie just outside the city.

January 14 – 24, 2016 Info

El Castillo at Chichén ItzáFrom A.D. 300 until A.D. 900, a brilliant culture flourished in the Yucatán Peninsula of Mexico – the Classic Maya. Accompanying us on our tour of some of their most splendid sites will be Cornell University’s Dr. John Henderson, one of the nation’s leading scholars of the Maya.

March 10-20, 2016 Info

ex_copanRain forests, snow-capped volcanoes, and magnificent lakes make up the landscape of the ancient Maya in the highlands of Guatemala.On our tour you’ll experience a complete spectrum of history – from ancient Maya ruins to modern-day Maya cities. Our travels will take us from beautiful Lake Atitlán to the Honduran rainforest where we will visit Copán, considered the crown jewel of the southern Maya cities.