Boise City Department of Arts and History

River Street Project and digging at Glacier

As you’re reading this on 7/11/2014, I’m probably digging a test unit somewhere outside Glacier National Park. I’m actually on assignment this year and will be out of cell/internet range during the day. I’ll be working on an awesome possibly Archaic site along the Going-to-the-Sun Road, so look me up if you’re somehow rolling through Glacier (I’ll be the dirty one digging a hole in the ground looking for rocks).

I’m so happy to be creating a submission for the Day of Archaeology 2014. Just like last year, I made a video covering my recent activities. I spent two weeks in June (2014) conducting archival research and collecting oral histories for the River Street Digital History Project. The River Street Project is dedicated to gathering and digitizing as much information as possible about the River Street Neighborhood, which was Boise’s largest interracial communities. I’m working with the descendant community and historical repositories in Boise. It a collaboration between myself, my advisor at the University of Arizona, and Dr. Jill Gill– History professor at Boise State University. The project has been funded by the Boise City Department of Arts and History and the  Charles Redd Center for Western Studies at Brigham Young University. I also received a travel grant to present some of this information at SHA2014 from the  University of Arizona’s School of Anthropology. I can’t tell you how grateful and fortunate I’ve been to receive such support from these many organizations.

The River Street Neighborhood is developing and the historical fabric of the neighborhood has changed drastically. It was home to people of all races and nationalities, but was most famous for the concentration of African American families that lived there until the 1960s. As part of the River Street Project, I will create a website to host and disseminate the collected information. The website will also support videos and short snippets of audio from the oral history interviews. A Google Earth-based walking tour of the neighborhood is also in the mix.

While the website is still under construction, you can check out the latest draft of the project’s first video below:


Research on River Street has revealed a very complex neighborhood where people were accepted for the content of their character rather than their racial affiliation. It was and still is a community that is at the heart of what it means to be an Idahoan.
The website ( will go live sometime in September, 2014. If you want to learn more about the project or would like to contribute, email me:
Or, you can leave a comment below.
Happy Day of Archaeology!