The ESRARA constitution and bylaws require the organization to have a meeting every two years. Our last meeting was at Falls Creek Fall, Tennessee, in 2016 so we should have had one somewhere in the eastern United States in 2018. Past ESRARA meetings have been held in Arkansas, Alabama, Illinois, Tennessee, and Kentucky, among other places. The biennial meeting typically consists of a business meeting including election of officers, a morning of paper presentations where members discuss their current research projects, and tours to local rock art site.
All of this requires a great deal of organization on the part of the local host, which typically is a university or federal agency such as the USDA Forest Service, in terms of locating a conference site, reserving hotel rooms, sending out a call for papers, leasing buses for the rock art tours, scheduling a banquet, receiving registration payments from members, and so on. I know this to be the case as my home university (Southern Illinois University Carbondale) has TWICE sponsored the meetings with the help of the Shawnee National Forest.
The 2018 meeting did not happen primarily because we could not find any members willing to step up and assume the role of host. As a result, we decided to postpone the meetings until 2020, which would give us time to locate both a host and venue.
We initially considered holding the meetings in St. Louis with the assistance of ESRARA member Amy Clark who is a Senior Research Assistant at the St. Louis Art Museum. Such a meeting potentially would have included visits to local rock art sites as well as the St. Louis Art Museum Native American art galleries, which includes examples of prehistoric art objects that contain many of the same designs seen at Mississippi River Valley rock art sites. While we were considering this, we were approached informally by members of the Kentucky Heritage Council about the possibility of holding a joint KHC-ESRARA meeting in Kentucky in 2020. This would have increased the number of people attending the meeting as well as enabling us to possibly recruit new members. We were very seriously considering accepting this proposal and putting the St. Louis meetings off to 2022 when a little something called the coronavirus came along. And everyone knows what the result of that has been to date.
I believe it is unwise to attempt to schedule an in-person ESRARA meeting until the coronavirus comes under control, which may not be until next year (2022) at the earliest. I think what we should consider doing instead is to hold the business portion of the meeting online via ZOOM later this year (2021) so that we can proceed with officer elections or appointments, receive officer reports, and begin discussion of where and when to hold the next in person meeting.
In closing, I would note that along with now-deceased ESRARA president Dr. Fred Coy and others I am one of the founding members of the organization some 29 years ago. I have always supported the organization through my role as an officer, submitting articles to this web site, corresponding with members, and sponsoring and attending the biennial meetings. I will continue to do the same going forward and urge other of our members to do the same.
Here is the final schedule for the 2016 Conference. ESRAC Schedule_Final
Friday, May 27th: Field Trip Breakfast on your own. 8:00am Departure—we will meet at the Inn lobby for opening remarks and a brief review of the day’s agenda before departing via Tennessee State Parks charter bus. Seating is limited, to reserve your seat email Sierra Bow at firstname.lastname@example.org. Reservations will be accepted until the bus is filled. 10:30am Arrive at Dunbar Cave State Park where Dr. Jan Simek will guide us through the cave and discuss the art. After the tour we will have lunch at the park. You may either bring your own lunch or purchase a picnic lunch for $11. Options for provided lunch are listed below. 1:30pm Depart from Dunbar Cave State Park 2:30pm Arrive at Sellars Farm State Archaeological Area where Dr. Kevin Smith will guide us through the site. 4:00pm Depart from Sellars Farm and travel back to Fall Creek Falls State Park 6:00pm Dinner will be on your own 7:00pm Keynote address will be given by Dr. Kevin Smith at the Fall Creek Falls Inn. Friday Picnic Lunch - $11.00 per personPicnic Lunch Options: There are three different options for your lunch, each are $11 per person.
- Option 1: Croissant, Sandwich, or Wrap (choice of one). Ham, turkey, chicken, tuna salad or roast beef and cheese. Comes with a dill pickle spear, bag of chips, cookie or brownie, and your choice of soda or bottled water.
- Option 2: Chicken Tenders (2 pieces). Comes with potato wedges, baked beans, cookie or brownie, and your choice of soda or bottled water
- Option 3: Old Fashioned Hamburger. Comes with potato wedges, baked beans, cookie or brownie, and your choice of soda or bottled water
The 2016 Conference Agenda is now available! There have been a few changes to the schedule and the field-trip has been included. This year we will be visiting Dunbar Cave State Park and the Sellars Farm State Archaeological Area. We will travel as a group via Tennessee State Parks charter bus. There is no cost for registering for the rock-art tour, except the optional picnic lunch for $11. If you do not choose the picnic lunch you are responsible for bringing your own lunch, we will not be stopping at any fast-food chains. Seating is limited on the bus. Email Sierra M. Bow at email@example.com to secure your seat. We will be accepting abstracts until the conference is filled. If you are interested in presenting a paper, please send your 300-word or less abstract to Sierra M. Bow at firstname.lastname@example.org. All electronic submissions should be in Microsoft Word format. The block of rooms at the Fall Creek Falls Inn will be held until Monday, April 25th at 5:00PM (not Tuesday, April 26th). Reservations can be made by phone by calling 1-800-250-8610 and identifying yourself as a member of the ESRARA group or online at http://tnstateparks.com/parks/inn/inn-at-fall-creek-falls. If reserving online enter “6353” under the “Special Rates”/“Group” tab to reserve your room as part of the ESRARA group.
Eastern States Rock Art Research Conference
Call for Papers
May 26th-29th, 2016The 2016 Eastern States Rock Art Research Conference will be held at Fall Creek Falls State Park in Spencer, Tennessee. Those interested in presenting a paper should send a 300 word or less abstract to:
Sierra M. Bow, M.A.
Department of Anthropology, University of Tennessee
250 South Stadium Hall
Knoxville, TN 37966
Email—email@example.comThe deadline for abstract submission is April 22nd, 2016. All electronic submissions should be in Microsoft Word format. Participants will be allocated 15 minutes for their presentation. A digital projector and laptop will be available for use as well as a dry erase board. Please let Sierra know if you have any additional equipment needs. The field-trip will be on Friday May 27th and the paper conference will be all day on Saturday May 29th with a banquet dinner and keynote speaker to follow.
The 2016 ESRARA meeting is scheduled to be held at Fall Creek Falls State Park in Spencer, Tennessee on May 26th-29th. Fall Creek Falls State Park is Tennessee’s largest state park, encompassing more than 26,000 acres across the eastern top of the Cumberland Plateau. The natural landscape is filled with cascades, gorges, waterfalls, streams and stands of virgin hardwood timber. Fall Creek Falls State Park is also home to one of the highest waterfalls in the eastern United States, Fall Creek Falls, at 256 feet. Facilities in the park include an inn, cabins, campsites, golf course, swimming pool, nature center, an adventure zipline, and full service restaurant. Fall Creek Falls State Park 2009 Village Camp Road Spencer, Tennessee 38585 Map & Directions A block of rooms has been reserved for May 26th-29th for the Inn at Fall Creek Falls State Park. Room rates for the Inn are $85/night for a queen room and $95/night for a king room. Check-in time is 4:30PM. Check-out is 11AM. The block will be held until 5:00PM on Monday, April 25th, 2016. Each individual guest is responsible for making their own reservation before Monday, April 25th, 2016. Reservations can be made by calling 1-800-250-8610 and identifying yourself as a member of the ESRARA Group or online at http://tnstateparks.com/parks/inn/inn-at-fall-creek-falls. Find the “Inn” tab on the left hand side, then “Reserve Now”. Once directed to this page under the “Special Rates” tab, highlight “Group” and enter “6353” to reserve your room as part of the ESRARA conference. The first night stay for each room you reserve will be charged to your credit card to confirm your reservation(s). Schedule of Events: Thursday May 26th- Arrival Friday May 27th- Rock art field-trip, details will come soon Saturday May 28th- Conference; Business Meeting; ESRARA Banquet and Auction; Keynote speaker Sunday May 29th- Departure