Dr. Mel Zabecki

Have you ever wondered what the American Indians ate hundreds or even thousands of years ago? There were no chickens, pigs, or cows, so what kind of meat did they eat? There was no wheat, so how did they live without bread? There were no microwave ovens or metal pots, so how did they cook their food? Archeologists wondered that, too, and have developed the fields of paleoethnobotany and experimental archeology to answer those questions.

Dr. Mel Zabecki, a bioarcheology specialist, will be the guest speaker at the April 3 meeting of the Tunican Chapter of the Arkansas Archeological Society. She will take members and guests on a journey from how we learn about ancient ingredients to the experimental archeology of growing and processing ancient foods. The meeting will be held at 6:30 p.m. at the School of Forestry and Natural Resources Conference Room on the University of Arkansas at Monticello campus. The event is free and open to the public.

Dr. Zabecki earned her doctorate at the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville, specializing in bioarcheology. She is the educational outreach coordinator with the Arkansas Archeological Survey, where she works with Survey staff to develop educational materials and programming for a wide variety of audiences, including avocational archeologists, students and teachers, visitors to libraries, museums, state parks, and other venues, and the general public. Before joining the Survey staff, she was an interpreter at Parkin Archeological State Park where she has developed educational programs about ancient foodways, medicinal plants, and technology.

The Tunican Chapter of the Arkansas Archeological Society is a group of people interested in the archeology and history of Arkansas. Members work with the UAM Research Station of the Arkansas Archeological Survey to document and preserve Arkansas’s cultural heritage and to foster and encourage interest in the preservation of sites and artifacts. The Chapter holds a monthly speaker series on the first Tuesday of each month through the Spring 2018 semester. These events are also sponsored by the School of Social and Behavioral Sciences at the University of Arkansas at Monticello and the UAM Research Station of the Arkansas Archeological Survey.