Implementing the Antiquities Act: A Survey of Archeological Permits 1906-1935

Part of the Antiquities Act project

Author(s): Kathleen D. Browning

Year: 2003


Public archeology in the United States received a long-sought and hard won legislative boost for antiquities protection in 1906. On June 8, 1906, a federal law, an Act for the Preservation of American Antiquities (16 U. S. C. 431-433) was signed into law by President Theodore Roosevelt after several arduous decades of dedicated attention to the issue. Better known as the Antiquities Act, its enactment responded to a growing concern over the issues of looting and vandalism of American

archeological resources. Proponents of the Act's passage intended to provide appropriate mechanisms to halt the plundering of antiquities and destruction of archeological sites, which was pronounced in the southwestern United States. Additionally, supporters envisioned a statute to shelter irreplaceable archeological deposits, ancient architectural ruins, and natural resources from destruction or pillage by homesteaders, curious tourists, and pothunters increasingly known to frequent the American West (Lee 1970/2001; Rothman 1989: 12; Thompson 2000a).

Cite this Record

Implementing the Antiquities Act: A Survey of Archeological Permits 1906-1935. Kathleen D. Browning. Studies in Archeology and Ethnography ,#2. Washington, D.C.: National Center for Cultural Resources, National Park Service. 2003 ( tDAR id: 376924) ; doi:10.6067/XCV8P84B6G

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Individual & Institutional Roles

Sponsor(s): National Park Service

Record Identifiers

Studies in Archeology and Ethnography(s): 2

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