On Sunday, Oct. 21, UT's McClung Museum will pause to celebrate history by fusing National Archaeology Day and National Fossil Day into a single afternoon event.
Co-hosted by the Archaeological Institute of America, East Tennessee Society, and McClung Museum staff, the event will take place from 1-5 p.m. and is open to the public.
Students interested in pursuing careers in related fields are especially encouraged to attend. Displays of current research by local archaeologists and paleontologists will illuminate the possibilities of working in such fields, and attendees will note a range of topics covered.
Jessica Dalton-Carriger is an Assistant to the Aracheology Curator for the museum.
"We're really trying to increase public outreach and public knowledge of the many projects we're involved in," she said.
Professors, staff and graduate students will also be present to guide the activities and answer inquiries.
Hands-on activities will include identifying animal bones, Native American artifacts, rocks and other fossils. Visitors are welcomed to bring along artifacts of their own for identification as well. Bobby Braly, also an Assistant to the Archaeology Curator, will perform a flintknapping demonstration for a glimpse into prehistoric tool making. Finally, a pottery demonstration will take place outside in the plaza area.
"What a wonderful opportunity for students of all ages to learn about the disciplines of archaeology and paleontology and to talk with UTK scientists about their research," Dr. Jeff Chapman, Director of McClung Museum, said.
Since the early 1960s, Frank H. McClung Museum has served UT and the greater Knoxville area as one of the state's most impressive historical facilities. Displays showcase a vast array of artifactual topics including archaeology, geology, Native Americans of Tennessee, human origins, decorative arts, ancient Egypt, Civil War and freshwater mussels.
Consequently, it is accredited by the American Association of Museums, placing it in the top four percent of United States museums. Outside of daily classes held within the museum's auditorium, it acts as a hub of activity that aligns UT departments such as Anthropology, Earth & Planetary Sciences, Geography, Forestry, Wildlife and Fisheries, and many others together for mutual research efforts.
For further questions pertaining to Sunday's festivities, Abby Naunheimer can be reached at 865-974-2144, or firstname.lastname@example.org. McClung Museum is located in Circle Park, and shares information regarding its collections, exhibits and upcoming events on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.