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College of Arts & Sciences
SC Institute of Archaeology and Anthropology


ART - Archaeological Research Trust

The ART Fund's central mission is to help preserve and interpret the story of our collective heritage.

There was a time in the far distant past when men and women set foot upon the soil of what we now call Carolina for the first time. From that moment on, the activities of humankind here have been recorded.

From the first spearpoint crafted from local chert, from the first deer felled by that spear, to the very moment the Union warship Patapsco, amidst thunder and fire, came to rest on the sands of Charleston Harbor, when the last Edgefield potter gently melded earth, fire and water into the simple beauty of a stoneware jug-- it has all been recorded. This record is an amazingly complete story of all that has befallen us--it is a tale which faithfully holds our history fast, patiently awaiting the hands of those skilled in revealing its knowledge, so that it may become part of the cherished heritage of this historical corner of America we call South Carolina.

And where is this record? Where are the pages that hold this knowledge fast? They are beneath our feet still--they form the very soil on which we came first to tread--it is beneath the seas and rivers which brought many of us to the settlements and plantations that began our saga here. Archaeologists who, with their trowels, patiently peel apart the pages laid down by time reveal the record. They translate the secrets they unearth into the books, films, and museum exhibits that tell the rest of us who we are, where we came from, what struggles, sacrifices, rewards, and accomplishments contributed to the process that makes us what we are as the South Carolinians of today.

And yet the story is barely told. Recognizing this, the State of South Carolina created the South Carolina Institute of Archaeology and Anthropology in 1963. While State and Federal funds support much of the work of the Institute, much of the pure archaeological research is paid for by the private sector. These funds come from foundations, grants, commerce, and industry--companies with the desire to be good corporate citizens, individuals with a desire to make a personal contribution to their State's heritage, and yet more help is urgently needed.

What You Can Do To Preserve Our Past

We are dedicated to provide meaningful opportunities for the private individuals, companies and organizations to make more meaningful contributions to archaeological research, to get involved in local projects, and to communicate the our research results to the larger public. The ART Fund wants to connect its supporters with the work SCIAA does in order to provide a real sense of involvement in this fascinating and important work.

There are a number of ways you can help:

  • consider a tax-deductible gift to the ART Fund. Every dollar you give will be directly used to support our vital work. This can be done online or by writing your check to the ART Fund at the address listed below. Please make all checks payable to the USC Educational Foundation.

  • sign up for Legacy Magazine and ART email updates to keep abreast of work going on in South Carolina at all our projects.

  • consider becoming a member of the ART Society ($500 annually)! You’ll received all the above information plus invitations to quarterly meetings with our ART board at project locations around the state.

  • provide substantial support the ART Fund’s future with a gift through your estate plan or through a gift of life insurance or some other appreciated asset. The ART Fund was started 20 years ago through just such a generous act. So we very much understand how you can impact archaeological and anthropological research in our state for future generations. Just contact us below if you want more information or need assistance. The ART Funds tax deductibility may help your estate.

You can be a part of this work to save and interpret the story of our heritage be used to broadly support the future work of research and education! Please contact us if we can be of assistance.

Call or Write:

The Archaeological Research Trust 
Attn: Nena Rice
South Carolina Institute of Archaeology and Anthropology
1321 Pendleton Street
Columbia, SC 29208
803-576-6573 (Office)
803-331-3431 (Cell)