Black on white painted ceramic pot
Ceramic pots from many different cultures are cared for at WACC.

NPS Photo

The curation staff is responsible for the management, protection, and preservation of over 4 million objects in a collection repository that houses archeological artifacts, historic items, artwork, delicate ethnographic materials, and a limited number of natural history specimens in a climate controlled and secure environment.

Did You Know?
The oldest item stored at the Center is a piece of a Paleo Indian Clovis point, which is likely more than 10,000 years old.

The Collections
Objects in park collections tell the story of our nation's history and are critical windows to the past. Archeological collections at the Western Archeological and Conservation Center (WACC) not only help to show how people lived but also provide scientists the opportunity to research climate change impacts in the southwestern United States through the study of prehistoric vegetal and faunal remains.

Most museum objects curated at the center belong to National Park Service units located in the southwestern United States.The collections stored here include prehistoric items like ceramics, stone tools, basketry, textiles, and sandals, along with the remains of prehistoric foodstuffs like corn, beans, and squash. Items from the historic period include bottles, cans, tools, furniture, and textiles. Natural history collections include plant, mammal, bird, and geology specimens.

The Team
Curation staff assists parks and manages the object and specimen collections stored here at WACC. Their broad range of museum tasks include object identification, cataloging, object storage, exhibit design, and facilitation of tribal consultations and repatriation. Curation staff assists individual park staff with completing annual reporting efforts, resolving legacy collection issues, developing funding requests, creating museum management plans, and participating in National Park Service initiatives.

Last updated: August 8, 2016