Carol McDavid, PhD, Executive Director        Robert Marcom, MA, RPA, Associate Director
P. O. Box 131261 Houston, Texas 77219-1262 USA     Email: mcdavid(at)

A Community Resource for Archaeological Services

  • Community Support - we support existing grassroots history-making efforts and develop new community-driven history and archaeology activities.
  • Community Coordination - we help individuals and organizations work together with residents and agencies at the city, county, state and federal levels to create and develop history-related work.

  • Historical Research - we can locate archival and public records, conduct surveys and interviews (both ethnographic and oral history) and provide historical documentation.

  • Archaeological Survey - - we can conduct archaeological surveys and excavations, create maps and provide geographical information services.

  • Outreach - we can assist archaeological firms, museums, and other community groups in planning displays, educational activities, and other community outreach activities that have to do with archaeology, history, and material culture.

  • Inter-group Relations - we make connections between grassroots history efforts, government agencies, and larger organizations, to assist all in conducting their missions.

  • Grants and Funding - we assist community groups in writing collaborative grant applications to fund these kinds of activities, and our fees, when applicable, are significantly discounted from standard commercial rates.

  • Presentations – we conduct talks, slide shows, and other presentations about the archaeology and history of Texas and the US. We are available for luncheons and other special events. A sampling of topics include African Diaspora archaeology worldwide, African American archaeology, Native archaeologies of Texas and the surrounding region, the relationship between archaeology and metal detecting, the archaeology of Freedmen’s Town, Houston, the archaeology of plantation life, archaeologies of place, race, and class, developing historical archaeology displays, mapping and GIS, and more.

  • Seminars and Symposiums - we organize special-topic panels and other events which focus on a variety of archaeology and history topics, some of which are outlined above. Our network of presenters is worldwide.


The Community Archaeology Research Institute, Inc. (“CARI”) has been chartered to provide general services in the following areas:

    Curriculum Development – create study guides, lesson plans, workshops and other curriculum material for elementary, middle school and high school students to be used in both classroom and/or fieldtrip activities. Our focus is on providing new tools for teaching history, social studies, mathematics, science, writing, and other subjects. Even though our aim is in part to support archaeological stewardship, we work collaboratively, with educators, to create materials which serve educator needs, especially with regard to annual testing requirements and other goals.

    Field Schools – create directed learning through hands-on experience at urban archaeological sites that will include instruction in methodology as well as presentation of social and cultural context. Curricula can be aimed towards both high school and college student groups as well as “life learning” (adult) study programs. This could include collaboration with other educational non-profits.

    At-Risk/Adjudicated Youth Education – Develop programs to engage “at-risk” students and/or adjudicated youth, to support existing community youth projects and to encourage interest in learning and community involvement. (For the purposes of definition, here “at-risk” means economically or socially disadvantaged student populations).

    Training – Develop modules, publications and other devices to teach archaeologists the appropriate methods and techniques for working in urban contexts at community archaeology sites as well as obtaining an understanding of the community archaeology model encompassing a diversity of contexts and interpretations. This goal is to create a more culturally inclusive knowledge base using archaeology as the initial platform.

    Research – Conduct scholarly research on topics related to community archaeology, and distribute this research to both professional and "public" audiences. Distribution includes the educational materials listed above, brochures, pamphlets, web sites, books, etc. Our research specialties include African American historical archaeology, the archaeologies of American Indian groups, the archaeologies of historic cemeteries, the politics of archaeology and heritage, using oral history and ethnography in archaeology, public archaeology, archaeology and new technologies, GIS surveying and mapping, and other topics.

CARI is a tax-exempt 501(c)(3) organization incorporated in the State of Texas, U. S. A.