Patrice Lynn Jeppson
Patrice L. Jeppson serves the PAF as Secretary. She has been active in historical archaeology for more than two decades and has conducted academic and CRM research in the American West, in the Mid-Atlantic, and in South Africa. Her current research interest is exploring the different ways that the public accesses and uses archaeological information in the present.
Patti's first Philadelphia archaeological experience was in 1984 at Front and Dock Streets, an area of Old City excavated prior to the construction of the Sheraton Hotel. These days she investigates the history of archaeology in Independence Park and its role in tourism and national identity construction. Between 2003 and 2005, she assessed the long history of archaeological research at Franklin Court for the Benjamin Franklin Tercentenary Consortium. That research contributed archaeological information to the Tercentenary's international loan exhibit, to the Frankliniana Database, and to educational programs. During the summer of 2007, Patti interpreted archaeology to the public at the President's House Site excavation in Independence Park. For the last three years, she has helped to co-coordinate and handle publicity for Philadelphia's annual contribution to Pennsylvania Archaeology Month. She has also presented papers and posters at this PAF co-sponsored celebration.
Patti earned her Ph.D. at the University of Pennsylvania in 2005. Her dissertation study explored how people make and maintain social identity using everyday objects. This research focused on European and Indigenous interaction on the Eastern Cape frontier of South Africa, 1820-1860, and on how this frontier experience has been interpreted within apartheid and post-apartheid South African society. Between 1998 and 2002, Patti researched how to more effectively bring archaeology into formal school education in a participant observation study at the Center for Archaeology/Baltimore County Public Schools (1998-2002). Prior to that, she taught Anthropology and Historical Archeology as an adjunct faculty member (1994-1997) and worked at the Cultural Resource Facility (1993-1994) at California State University, Bakersfield.
Patti currently teaches as an Adjunct Assistant Professor at West Chester University and at Cheyney University of Pennsylvania. She also volunteers as lead coordinator for Archaeology for the public www.saa.org/public, a web-based, clearing-house for public archaeology information hosted by the Society for American Archaeology. Among her published articles are "Leveling the playing field in the contested history of the South African past: a public versus a people's form of historical archaeology outreach" (2008), "Digital Bridge-Building: The 'Archaeology for the public' Web Pages Project" (2007), "Civil Religion and Civically Engaged Archaeology: Researching Benjamin Franklin and the Pragmatic Spirit"(2007), and "Archaeology for Education's Needs: An Archaeologist and an Educator Discuss Archaeology in the Baltimore County Public Schools (2007). Patti is a member of the American Anthropological Association and is a Fellow of the Society for Applied Anthropology. She is married and lives in Philadelphia.