Spencer Pelton named new State Archaeologist

JACKSON, Wyo. — Wyoming has named a new state archaeologist. Dr. Spencer Pelton, a University of Wyoming Anthropology Department faculty member, will take over the post held by Greg Pierce since 2014.

Dr. Pelton is a native of East Tennessee. He moved west in 2009 to pursue a career in archaeology, a pursuit that took him to California, Nevada, and Colorado, before moving to Wyoming in 2013. He has maintained a varied career in government, private and academic sectors bringing a breadth of experience to the position of Wyoming State Archaeologist.

“I’m honored to have been chosen as a leader in one of the finest communities of archaeologists in the nation,” Pelton said. “Wyoming’s past should inspire joy and curiosity in its residents, and I look forward to fostering that spirit throughout the state in the years to come.”

Dr. Pelton’s research experience is primarily in the early prehistory of hunter-gatherers of the High Plains and the Rocky Mountains. He has conducted excavations at several notable Wyoming archaeological sites including the Powers II red ocher quarry located in the historic Sunrise townsite.

Dr. Pelton’s addition to the UW Department of Anthropology contributes educational opportunities in Wyoming prehistory, cultural resource management, archaeological excavation and scientific perspectives in anthropology.

Pelton will reside in Laramie with his wife Hallie and their dog, Cashew.

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