The Gault School of Archaeological Research (GSAR) is a non-profit organization committed to education, research, and conservation of archaeological sites, especially including the Gault Site.
GSAR is celebrating you, our supporters!
Please mark December 2nd on your calendar now for a Gault site tour, followed by presentations, and refreshments on site. Details coming soon!
GSAR's educational tours of the Gault Site and outreach programs inspire intellectual curiosity about humans in the past and how archaeological science helps reveal and interpret this ancient heritage. We aim to help people of all ages explore the past, and consider how our shared humanity connects to us today.
GSAR conducts primary research to understand the past, with a special interest in how the Peopling of the Americas fits into the global story of human expansion and development. Following in the footsteps of our founder, Dr. Michael B. Collins, we conduct exciting research that increases our education impact and creates conservation opportunities.
Through our educational and research efforts, we work to raise public awareness about the vital need to conserve non-renewable cultural heritage sites for the benefit of future generations.
Starting in 1991, research at the Gault Site helped shape how scientists understand Clovis and earlier-than-Clovis occupations in the human history of North America. Work here directed by our founder, Dr. Michael Collins has established a benchmark for how we recognize and make sense of the Clovis period, which lasted from around 13,400 to 12,800 years ago. Leading up to these investigations, scholars differed in their opinions about whether Clovis peoples were the first inhabitants of the Americas, or whether there was archaeological evidence for pre-Clovis occupations. Investigations at Gault have helped establish that people were in the Americas perhaps as early as about 18,000 years ago, far longer than many archaeologists had believed. Working with a team of scientists representing different disciplines, Dr. Collins’ work has helped establish the antiquity of human presence in Central Texas specifically, and in the Americas generally. While this advance in the archaeological understanding of the past is significant, GSAR recognizes that one of the real contributions that the Gault Site can make is in helping students follow a similar learning journey every day.
The education of both students of archaeology and the general public is one of the GSAR’s primary missions.
Over 2,300 people have volunteered with GSAR. In our lab alone volunteers have contributed over 13,000 hours of time helping to sort, wash, catalog, and even analyze the vast collections of cultural materials recovered from the Gault Site.