Environmental Archaeology Program Collections Policies


Kitty F. Emery, PhD., Associate Curator
Environmental Archaeology Program
Florida Museum of Natural History
Dickinson Hall, Museum Road
University of Florida, P.O. Box 117800
Gainesville, Florida 32611-7800
Nicole Fuller M.A., Collections Manager
Environmental Archaeology Program
Florida Museum of Natural History
Dickinson Hall, Museum Road
University of Florida, P.O. Box 117800
Gainesville, Florida 32611-7800

Downloadable Policy Guidelines:

General Guidelines for Lab and Collection Use

Guidelines for Collection Research Use

Environmental Archaeology Program General Collections Access

The Environmental Archaeology Program (EAP) is a research and teaching laboratory devoted to asking and answering questions about the interaction of humans in modern and ancient environments of the circumCaribbean, including southeastern North America, the Caribbean, Central America, and northern South America. We welcome visitors interested in conducting academic and scientific research. Such visits must be pre-arranged with the curator, Dr. Kitty F. Emery and collection manager, Nicole Fuller.

The Environmental Archaeology Program (EAP) is housed in the Florida Museum of Natural History research facility, Dickinson Hall, on the University of Florida campus at the corner of Museum Road and Newell Drive. The Environmental Archaeology Program holdings are comprised of five separate collections: 1) modern zoological comparative collection; 2) zooarchaeological collection; 3) modern botanical comparative collection; 4) archaeobotanical collection; and 5) archaeopedology collection. These represent nearly 3.5 million specimens. Printed and electronic data associated with these collections are also archived in our laboratory. The EAP collections also include publicly available data that may be used in accordance with the Florida Museum copyright policy. Please request permission before using any images found on our website, no commercial use of these images is allowed without prior consent from the EAP.

The collections are maintained by Associate Curator Kitty Emery. Our collections are intended for academic and scientific research and access to them is governed by the collection policies of the Florida Museum of Natural History and University of Florida. Of particular importance is the Florida Museum Collection Policy statement on collections access.

Accessing the EAP-FLMNH Laboratory:

The foundation of our work rests on our comparative collections, archaeological collections, and attendant data, which we maintain to carry out the Florida Museum mission of research, teaching, and service to the community. These collections are curated under local, state, federal, and international permits and are governed by legislation intended to protect natural and cultural resources for the common good. Therefore, use of our collections is a formal process that is overseen by the Curator, Collection Manager, and the directors of the Natural History Department and of the Florida Museum. Under Museum policy, access to the EAP collections is confined to Museum operating hours for legitimate research and study by responsible investigators, subject to procedures necessary to safeguard the objects and to restrictions imposed by limitations of space, facilities, and availability of appropriate curatorial staff. We particularly encourage grant-funded and student researchers to make use of our collections. The Florida Museum collections are not intended for commercial use (see below). Final decisions regarding access to collections are made by the curator and collection manager.

Please contact the curator or collection manager at least 30 days in advance of your visit to obtain permission and arrange for use of our laboratory’s resources. In most cases, a short proposal must be approved by the curator and collection manager, and you will be asked to sign a Research and Publication Agreement prior to beginning your research. The requirements for proposal and agreement forms are waived on a case-by-case basis for short-term and/or occasional use of the collections. However, permission must always be granted and arranged by the curator and/or collection manager.

The Environmental Archaeology Collections are intended for academic and scientific purposes. We note that the Museum discourages use of its collections in commercial, non-educational contexts but we recognize that such activities often have value to the scientific community and for training the next generation of researchers and decision-makers. The EAP does not typically provide laboratory space or collection access to contractors for the purpose of conducting business. We are constrained by limitations related to space and personnel time and our lab is not equipped to support commercial analyses. We will extend a professional courtesy if a contractor occasionally needs to verify a few identifications.

However, we do accept contracts for faunal and botanical identifications by EAP staff or for EAP staff to supervise students working under the aegis of contracting companies. These contracts are administered through the University of Florida Research Foundation and the University of Florida, Division of Sponsored Research. We have a long history (40 years) of collaborative work with private companies where contract funds are used to train students, generate data for publication purposes, and maintain our collections. Please contact us for further information.

Inquiries concerning the use of the collections must be directed to the Curator or Collections Manager. Museum hours are M-F 9 AM to 5 PM. The Museum is closed on state and federal holidays.

Environmental Archaeology Program Loans Policy

At the discretion of the and , Environmental Archaeology Program (EAP) collections, images, and data may be loaned to museums, universities, and other appropriate public institutions for research and/or exhibition purposes. Loans are governed by Collection Loan Policies of the Florida Museum of Natural History.

In addition, the Environmental Archaeology Program loans policy is as follows: The EAP provides loans of specimens (modern and archaeological), images, and data to faculty members of accredited institutions, and occasionally to professionals or private contracting firms (loans made to students must be co-signed by a faculty member). We do not loan rare or fragile specimens or any comparative specimens that are not duplicated in our collections (except for very short term loans for special purposes). Archived data, grey literature, and images loans follow the same protocols as for specimens but may require prior permission of the original author/photographer. Image and data loans may also be subject to a fee depending on the intended use. Loaned specimens, data, and images may be used by the applicant only for the agreed upon use, and no other parties shall use the specimen, data, or images without the explicit written permission of the Environmental Archaeology Program. Loans are not transferable. Loans are made for up to one year and are renewable on approval by the Curator.

Loans of specimens, data, and images for teaching, exhibition, and commercial purposes are also made under special circumstances, specifically following Florida Museum Collections Policy guidelines. Specimen loans for destructive analysis will be considered but are restricted in accordance with the policies of the Florida Museum and the Environmental Archaeology Program. Please contact the curator and collection manager for further information on these special circumstance loans.

Any request for a loan of either comparative or archaeological EAP collections (or images or data) must be accompanied by a research proposal approved by the Curator and Collection Manager, and an EAP Research and Publication Agreement form signed by the loan recipient and the EAP Curator/Collection Manager. Researchers must provide a copy of data, images, and publications resulting from the research. This data, as per the Florida Museum policy (section 16), will become part of the collection of the Museum and will be maintained with the records associated with the materials analyzed. All publications or other use of the specimen, data, or image will be credited as of/from the Florida Museum EAP collections.

Out-going loans are coordinated by the Collection Manager following approval by the Curator. Please contact us directly if you are interested in receiving a loan of specimens, data, or images.

Environmental Archaeology Program Accession Policy (Acquisitions and Donations)

The Environmental Archaeology Program (EAP) of the Florida Museum of Natural History is an active research facility with a growing comparative and archaeological collection. We are happy to consider accepting donated specimens and collections at any time – these additions are of great value to our research and to the preservation of our heritage and biodiversity. Our acquisitions are governed by certain rules and priorities, and decisions regarding acquisitions are made by the EAP curator and collection manager.

Under Florida Statutes § 1004.56, the Museum is empowered to “…accept, preserve, maintain, or dispose of the specimens and materials…” to build its research collections. Such acquisitions may result from staff research or donations made by other museums, universities, institutions and the public. The EAP does not typically purchase collections. Some donations may be considered charitable gifts for tax purposes, although the Museum does not provide any assessments for tax or other financial purposes. Acquisitions are accessioned into the collections of the Florida Museum of Natural History and, as property of the Museum, are then curated following the Florida Museum Collection Policy.

Collection accessioning is a formal and legal process that is governed by ethical standards and the policies of the Florida Museum of Natural History. The EAP adheres to these policies.

The makes final decisions on any acquisition following consultation with the and approval by the Florida Museum Director’s Office, Chair of Natural History, and the Space Committee. These decisions are made according to policies and priorities defined in the Florida Museum Collections Policy and in internal EAP protocols. In particular, consideration is given to: 1. the legal status of the collection in terms of appropriate permits and ownership status; 2. capability of the EA Program facilities to store and maintain the incoming collection; and 3. appropriateness of the collection to the mandates of the Florida Museum and the EAP in terms of research and geographic areas.

Please review the linked documentation and contact us directly if you are interested in donating collections to the Environmental Archaeology Program.