Current and former students in the Central Wyoming College anthropology program were awarded scholarships and prizes for work presented at the 2014 conference of the Wyoming Association of Professional Archaeologists / Wyoming Archaeological Society May 2-4.

Katie Johnson received a cash prize for “Best Student Paper” for her archaeological work documenting a Union Pass-area tie hack camp run by her great-grandfather.

Nico Holt, an enrolled Arapaho, discussed the Lightning Creek “Battle” of 1903, also called the Last Indian Battle in Wyoming. Holt and fellow student Jordan Stapley were each awarded Brad Humphrey Memorial Scholarships, named for a Wyoming archaeologist who perished in the Arctic Ocean when a boat he was traveling in from Greenland to Canada was capsized by a whale.

In her presentation, Stapley described the impacts of western tourism on the cultures and archaeological resources of Southeast Asia which she observed during a solo six-month backpacking trip through Thailand, Laos and Cambodia.

Stapley and fellow student Sharla Ramirez were awarded $1,000 Reiss Memorial research scholarships.  Stapley won for a proposal to conduct excavations at a prehistoric ceramic site in the Red Desert, while Ramirez plans to use the scholarship to fund additional research in Wyoming and South Dakota on the Lightning Creek battle and its aftermath.

CWC Western American Studies Professor Guenther was especially pleased his students received the scholarships as it is named for Dave Reiss, who had been a close friend when they both were on staff at the office of the Wyoming State Archaeologist.

Former CWC student Gale Brow, who is now completing her bachelor’s degree at the University of Wyoming, received a $1,000 Mulloy Scholarship for academic excellence.

Bill Elder presented a poster detailing his continuing research on Lander pioneer James Carr’s role in the Sand Creek Massacre.

“The conference provides an excellent opportunity for students to learn professional competency,” Guenther said of fund raising, conducting field and lab research, organizing data and presenting a “coherent analysis in an intimidating, professional setting, while networking with other students and professionals.”


Photo: Jordan Stapley