Excavate at Etzanoa

Etzanoa may be the second largest known prehistoric archaeological site in the United States. The site dates to AD 1450-1700 and was visited in 1601 by the Juan de Oñate expedition. Eyewitness accounts can be accessed here and recent published work can be accessed here. We are working in an undisturbed location that yielded a dense concentration of features and cultural materials since 2017. We will be hand excavating with shovels and trowels, with dry screening and flotation. We will be ground truthing remote sensing targets, utilizing advanced coring techniques, and using laser scanners for mapping. Students will gain experience in all aspects of field excavation and recording. This site is an active research locale with promise to answer questions about ancestral Wichita lifeways and exchange systems right before and during early European colonizaton! Students will gain the basic skills necessary to excavate archaeological sites and for employment in cultural resource management fields.

 Etzanoa excavation


The Field School will run from Tuesday, June 1st through Friday, June 25th, 2021. Students should plan to be in Arkansas City, Kansas, by Tuesday, June 1st for orientation. Students will be housed in single-occupancy dormitories on the Cowley Community College campus. Transportation to/from the site will be provided and we can arrange for airport pick-up from Wichita for students travelling from out-of-state. 


etzanoa screening


Students are required to register for field school under ANTH690 for 4 credit hours.

Undergraduate Tuition & Fees (Resident): ~$1,060

Graduate Tuition & Fees (Resident): ~$1,490

Room & Board: ~$480


Excavation equipment is provided. Rooms are provided over the weekend. Weekend meals are being negotiated.

*Do note that these are in-state estimates. Many neighboring states and states along the I-35 corridor are considered in-state. Contact anthropology@wichita.edu with any questions. Field school costs are subject to change.


etzanoa map

Health Considerations

This field school will prioritize the health and safety of all involved. As such, there will be several accomodations to promote good hygeine practices and limit the spread of the current pandemic, to CDC guidelines. All students will be housed in single-occupancy dormatory rooms. Field excavation (held outside) will space students to accomodate social distancing. Health checks will be required daily before travel to the site. Masks will be worn when indoors. Staff will be fully vaccinated prior to field school, and students are encouraged to take advantage of appropriate testing and vaccination opportunities. Check out the covid guidelines for Wichita State University and Cowley Community College.

To Apply

Fill out an application HERE. Applications will be taken until Friday, April 2nd, after which all applicants will be emailed for further information. Registration will be filled on a first-come, first-served basis. Accepted students will have until Monday, May 3rd to register for the course, at which time we will open for students on the waitlist.

Non-WSU students will have to be accepted to either the College of Liberal Arts (undergraduate) or the Graduate School (graduate) prior to registration. We will walk you through the process of registration once you have been accepted into the field school. Only the first 20 students to confirm registration will be admitted.