The New York Archaeological Council (NYAC) was founded to raise awareness of archaeology and archaeological issues of New York State: to provide information of general interest on the history and prehistory of New York as well as about the field of archaeology that provides insight into that history, to provide educational resources about archaeology, to provide information on the conduct of professional archaeology in New York, to serve as a point of reference for anyone that needs to consider archaeological resources in compliance with various laws and regulations that often come into play during construction projects, and to increase the awareness of New York Archaeology to the general public.
Learning about the past from archaeological sites provides an exciting opportunity for the public to experience archaeology through “hands-on” exercises. The role of the public in helping to preserve archaeological sites cannot be underestimated and is necessary if these fragile resources are to be preserved and interpreted for future generations. There are many ways in which community members can become involved in the preservation of archaeological sites and assist in the identification of such resources within local communities. Like, interviewing local residents to identify and record sites where historic and prehistoric artifacts have been found so that a list of known sites can be generated for your community. Make maps of the site(s) using a GPS unit. Identify and discuss possible threats to sites and possible means of preserving them with local officials. Then, send information on known sites to the State Historic Preservation Office so it can be added to state site files.
The New York State Archaeological Association (NYSAA) is composed of avocational and professional archaeologists primarily within New York State, though some of its members can be found throughout the world. NYSAA stands to promote archaeological and historical study, and research covering the artifacts, rites, customs, beliefs and other phases of the lives and cultures of the American Indian occupants of New York State up to and including their contact with the Europeans. Recently, the Association has expanded its focus to include research upon Euro-American archaeological sites post-dating European Contact.