Site Stewardship

Site Stewardship

Site Stewardship

Joe Daniele
Programs: Review and Consultation, Site Stewardship
(307) 777-8793


Joe Daniele
Programs: Review and Consultation, Site Stewardship
(307) 777-8793



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Established in 2006, the Wyoming Archaeological Site Stewardship Program (WYSSP) is comprised of concerned people committed to protecting and preserving Wyoming's rich cultural heritage. Professional heritage/cultural resource specialists and trained volunteers work together to monitor cultural resources throughout the state: adding to the existing documentary record, sustaining a regular presence to deter looting and vandalism, and reporting these activities when they occur.

The primary purposes of the Wyoming Site Stewardship Program are:

  • To protect and preserve prehistoric and historic cultural resources for the purposes of conservation, scientific study, interpretation, and public enjoyment.
  • To increase public awareness of the significance and value of cultural resources.
  • To discourage/deter site vandalism and looting.
  • To assist with permanent management of monitored sites.
  • To promote understanding and cooperation between the Wyoming State Historic Preservation Office, the Bureau of Land Management, and the interested public.

What does it take to become a Wyoming Site Steward?

Anyone who is interested in learning more about cultural resources and their preservation, and who is willing to sign and adhere to the Code of Ethics [file below], can be a site steward. Stewards will serve on a voluntary basis and will be recruited and selected without regard to race, religion, age, sex, national origin, or handicap.


Responsibilities of Wyoming Site Stewards

The primary objective of the stewardship program is to periodically monitor selected cultural resources to maintain a record of resource condition. Information collected by stewards will include evidence of new vandalism or looting and evidence that the resource may be deteriorating from natural conditions or inadvertently from human activity at and near the site. The following responsibilities of the site steward are carried out in consultation with the site stewardship program field coordinator:

  • Monitoring sites on a regular basis on an agreed upon schedule
  • Establishing a photo monitoring system, including photo monitoring points
  • Filling out monitoring forms [file below] after each visit and providing them to the field coordinator
  • Reporting any changes in condition to the field coordinator; reporting as soon as possible any evidence of new vandalism or looting
  • Assisting with site record updating as needed and reporting any unrecorded cultural resources that may be observed to the field coordinator
  • Notifying the field coordinator if unable to perform a monitoring trip
  • Sharing your itinerary with someone who can alert authorities in the event that you don't return home as scheduled
  • Following reasonable and accepted safety procedures for working outside
  • Making recommendations to the field coordinator for signs, fencing, etc. that may improve management of the site

Information on vandalism and looting, reported promptly, can greatly increase the effectiveness of investigation. Information on other conditions that may be affecting a site is used to improve general site management. Each volunteer site steward has responsibility for one or more particular sites and works with a site stewardship field coordinator to establish the monitoring requirements for each site to help preserve and protect sites.



Site Stewards must

  • Have a sincere interest in preserving Wyoming's cultural resources
  • Be at least 18 years old  (those under 18 years old may participate with a parent or guardian who is a trained site steward)
  • Complete the required training before participating, consisting of both classroom instruction and in-field training with a WYSSP field coordinator
  • Sign the Code of Ethics [file below] after completing training and fill out a Volunteer Services Agreement [file below] (to monitor sites on BLM land)
  • Enjoy driving and hiking in remote and sometimes rugged areas


Sites We've Worked On

The Wyoming Site Stewardship Program Castle Garden

The Wyoming Site Stewardship Program and Lander Bureau of Land Management installed signage and motion activated cameras at the Castle Garden’s site in an effort to curb instances of vandalism and, in addition to site monitors, give an enhanced presence at the site. The Wyoming Site Stewardship program spent time at the Crazy Woman battlefield site near Buffalo Wyoming. The Wyoming Site Stewardship Program was able to put up signage and continue metal detecting to aid in delineating boundaries at the site. This visit was a continuation of a project that was started in 2016, and this year got to work with volunteers from the Passport in Time program. In July, the Wyoming Site Stewardship Program worked with the Cody Bureau of Land Management, and local law enforcement, at the Oregon Basin Petroglyph site to train site stewards in crime archaeological crime scene recognition and site monitoring. A site stewardship training was also done at the White Mountain Petroglyph site with the Rock Springs Bureau of Land Management to help deter ongoing vandalism. Outreach lectures were given at the University of Wyoming, Indian Paintbrush elementary school, and in Buffalo, Wyoming a the Bureau of Land Management.


Sub galleries

IMG9010Castle Gardens 2017
IMG8099Crazy Woman Battlefield
IMG9781Oregon Basin 2017
IMG7638Powder Wash 2016
IMG0004White Mountain 2017



The Wyoming Site Stewardship Program is sponsored by the Wyoming State Historic Preservation Office (SHPO), the United States Department of Interior, Bureau of Land Management (BLM) in Wyoming, and the United States Department of Agriculture, Forest Service (USFS) in Wyoming. These three agencies exercise oversight of the program. Other agencies, organizations, and individuals are invited to become official supporters of the program. To learn more about becoming a sponsor or supporter please contact us.



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