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State Archaeological Permit

Who Needs One?

Anyone wishing to conduct archaeological work on state-owned or state-managed lands.

What Information Must I Provide?

Applicants must submit "Tennessee Division of Archaeology, Application for an Archaeological Permit" form (Form CN-0939). Applicants provide the following information: name, address and affiliation of Archaeologist in General Charge; a project proposal; a map location; description of area to be investigated; purpose, nature, and extent of investigation; funding sources; estimated project duration; name of Archaeologist in Direct Charge; and estimated number of project personnel. The applicant must also submit a map of the project area.

Form Description Number Form
Application for an Archaeological Permit CN-0939 PDF

How Will My Application Be Processed?

Completed application forms should be sent to the Tennessee Division of Archaeology. A detailed review of the application is conducted, and the applicant is sent a copy of the approved permit when the review is complete. The review process generally takes one week.

New permits will not be issued to those persons, corporations, societies or organizations that have outstanding reports due from previously issued permits.

What Fees Are Required?

There is no fee for the Archaeological Permit.

What Are My Rights and Responsibilities After the Permit is Approved?

The applicant has the right to proceed with activities outlined in the approved permit. All permitted survey, testing, and data recovery projects must be conducted and reported by professional archeologists meeting minimum qualifications and standards. The applicant is responsible for contacting the land managing agency prior to beginning work on state lands. During field work the Archeologist in General and/or Direct Charge must keep the State Archeologist informed of work progress. Final project reports are due at the expiration of the permit and must meet minimum standards and guidelines (provided in application package). At the expiration of the permit the applicant shall surrender all artifactual materials and all project records to the Division of Archeology

What Are the Division’s Rights and Responsibilities After the Permit is Approved?

The State Archaeologist and his staff have the right to inspect the project at any time. The Division has the right to revoke, suspend, or deny the issuance of a permit to anyone who violates the state statutes or departmental regulations. Any person that conducts archaeological work on state owned or controlled property without a permit is guilty of a misdemeanor and punishable under the general laws relating to misdemeanors. The State of Tennessee assumes no liability for injuries or losses sustained.

Whom Do I Contact For Applications, Assistance and Other Information?

Applicants may obtain applications and information from the State Program’s Archaeologist, Tennessee Division of Archaeology.

Applicants may refer to the following publications for further information:

» TCA Section 11-6-105 Excavation of State Lands