Requests for Statements of Interest
Conduct Archeological (Geophysical) Survey of 1868 Treaty Encampment Area at Fort Laramie National Historic Site, Fort Laramie, Wyoming
Background and Overview:
FOLA served as a commercial and social hub of the Northern Plains for much of the 19th century. It was the location of one of the first fur trading posts in the central Rocky Mountains and was instrumental in the establishment of trade relationships with many of the Northern Plains tribes. Continuously operating between 1834 and 1890, FOLA influenced the exploration and settlement of the West. Here, the Laramie and North Platte River Valleys created a natural migration corridor that influenced the location of historic trails and contributes to the historic scene and sense of place. Among the most significant of the park’s cultural resources, its archeology illustrates a vast period of human history. Thousands of Euro-Americans and Native Americans camped on these grounds over the years. Nothing is known about the archeology associated with the tribes who signed the treaties of 1851 and 1866-68 and camped at the fort during the negotiations. Likewise, there have never been any archeological investigations on the various overland trail campgrounds known to have existed around Fort Laramie during the 1840s-1850s, nor, using modern techniques, the actual physical remains of the various trails and roads which passed through Fort Laramie.
Fort Laramie continues to be regarded by Northern Plains tribes as the gathering site for negotiations. The State Historic Preservation Office (SHPO) and Tribal Historic Preservation Offices (THPOs) have recognized that careful stewardship of federally protected cultural resources has become a critical component in preservation of Wyoming state history and heritage. Consultation with the SHPO and the THPOs of the park’s 25 traditionally associated tribes indicates both entities have expressed strong support for a plan that preserves FOLA’s resources. Furthermore, Laramie and North Platte River dynamics have changed considerably with severe flood events and unpredictable erosion and sediment deposition within the river channel and floodplain. Development of a river corridor management plan would be an ideal opportunity to include members of the tribes in the assessment of resource impacts and alternative identification from the cultural perspective of the site’s descendants.
Anticipated Start Date: May 2024
End Date: September 31st, 2025(or as appropriate for the academic year). NOTE: all applicable field work must be completed in CY 2024. Analysis and reporting/cataloging deliverables may be submitted at a later determined date.
Materials Requested for Statement of Interest/Qualifications
Please prepare a 2-3 page summary of how you would envision implementing this project. Include your name, department, university or organization, and contact information, as well as information about any relevant experience, past projects, and staff, faculty, or students who would be available to work on the project. For additional information or questions, please reach out to the park contact listed below.
Statements of Interest should be submitted to Chris Mather no later than April 1st, 2023. Note: a proposed budget is not requested with the summary.
Cultural Resources Program Manager
Fort Laramie National Historic Site
965 Gray Rocks Road
Fort Laramie, WY 82212
Office: 370-837-2221 ext. 3018