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SAVE HISTORY Frequently Asked Questions

Archaeological resources, as defined by the Archaeological Resources Protection Act (16 USC 470bb[1]) are “material remains of past human life” including “pottery, basketry, bottles, weapons, weapon projectiles, tools, structures or portions of structures, pit houses, rock paintings, rock carvings, intaglios, graves, [and] human skeletal materials.” These items must be at least 100 years of age to be protected under ARPA. There are additional anti-theft laws that protect more recent resources.

Archaeological resources are non-renewable and do not exist to be consumed like water or wood. These resources hold their value best when they are left undisturbed, right where they were left on the land. If we practice sustainable appreciation of ancient sites, we protect the rights of future generations to understand history and heritage.