A core part of archaeology is the dual method involving fieldwork and laboratory analysis.
The study of archaeology creates a foundation in specific archaeological skills but also teaches more general skills such as critical thinking, the ability to build a logical argument, to synthesise vast amounts of information and to express ideas clearly and persuasively both in oral and written form. Many students also involve the study of cultures and languages.
Curator of Archaeology | Associate Professor
Ph.D. Anthropology, 2013, University of Arizona
Archaeologist with a strong emphasis on archaeological sciences and geosciences, and highly values interdisciplinary research within archaeology and anthropology, often working across traditionally non-archaeologically and non-anthropologically disciplinary frameworks.
Josh worked in the Archaeology Department at UAMN as a student from 1998 to 2000, and has closely worked with the Museum for over 15 years before joining the Archaeology Department full-time in 2013. He also teaches in the Department of Anthropology at UAF.
He is trained as an archaeologist with a strong emphasis on archaeological sciences and geosciences, and highly values interdisciplinary research within archaeology and anthropology, often working across traditionally non-archaeologically and non-anthropologically disciplinary frameworks. Josh is also grateful to be involved in several collaborative projects working with members of both urban and rural communities to understand the history and prehistory and development of landscapes in their regions. He spent several years working for a private cultural resources management firm in Alaska as a Senior Project Archaeologist and Lab Manager before joining the UAF Anthropology faculty, which provided him a background in cultural and heritage resource laws and practices.
His recent research has primarily focused on understanding changes in human technological, settlement, and subsistence systems within local ecological and environmental contexts in subarctic and arctic settings. He currently serves as a geoarchaeologist on the Upward Sun River Site and Quartz Lake-Shaw Creek Multidisciplinary Projects; both projects emphasize understanding changes in human-environment interactions over the last 14,000 years in the middle Tanana Valley in interior Alaska. Josh is also a collaborator on several field- and collection-based research projects focused on sites in the western Alaska Range in southcentral Alaska, the middle Kuskokwim River region in southwestern Alaska, and the arctic regions of northern Alaska.
Ph.D. Anthropology, 2013, University of Arizona
M.A. Anthropology, 2003, University of Alaska Fairbanks
B.A. Anthropology, 2000, University of Alaska Fairbanks
Potter, Ben A., and Joshua D. Reuther
2012 High Resolution Radiocarbon Dating at the Gerstle River Site, Central Alaska. American Antiquity 77(1):71-98.
Proue, Molly, Justin M. Hays, Joshua D. Reuther, and Jeffrey T. Rasic
2012 The Hayfield Site: Modern Technology Applied to Materials Collected in the 1950s. Alaska Journal of Anthropology 9(1):97-114.
Wooller, Matthew J., Josh Kurek, Ben Gaglioti, Les Cynwar, Nancy Bigelow, Joshua D. Reuther, Carol Gelvin-Reymiller, and John Smol
2012 An ~11,200 cal yr BP Paleolimnological Record from Quartz Lake, Alaska. Journal of Paleolimnology 48:83-99.
Gelvin-Reymiller, Carol, and Joshua D. Reuther
2011 Bird Bones, Needles, Iron and Stone: Insights into Late Holocene Prehistoric Alaskan Grooving Technology. Alaska Journal of Anthropology 8(1): 1-22.
Potter, Ben A., Joel D. Irish, Joshua D. Reuther, Carol Gelvin-Reymiller, and Vance T. Holliday
2011 A Paleoindian Child Cremation and Residential Structure from Eastern Beringia. Science 311:1058-1062.
Reuther, Joshua D., Natasha Slobodina, Jeff Rasic, John P. Cook, and Robert J. Speakman
2011 Gaining Momentum – Late Pleistocene and Early Holocene Archaeological Obsidian Source Studies in Interior and Northern Eastern Beringia. In From the Yensei to the Yukon: Interpreting Lithic Assemblage Variability in Late Pleistocene/Early Holocene Beringia, edited by Ted Goebel and Ian Buvit, pp. 270-286. Texas A&M Press, College Station.
Slobodina, Natalia S., Joshua D. Reuther, Jeff Rasic, John P. Cook, and Robert J. Speakman
2009 Obsidian Procurement and Use at the Dry Creek Site (HEA-005), Interior Alaska. Current Research in the Pleistocene 26:115-117.
Bowers, Peter M., and Joshua D. Reuther
2008 AMS Re-dating of the Carlo Creek Site, Nenana Valley, Central Alaska. Current Research in the Pleistocene 25:58-61.
Potter, Ben A., Peter M. Bowers, Joshua D. Reuther, and Owen K. Mason
2007 Holocene Assemblage Variability in the Tanana Basin: NLUR Archaeological Research,
1994-2004. Alaska Journal of Anthropology 5(1):23-42.
Gelvin-Reymiller, Carol, Joshua D. Reuther, Ben A. Potter and Peter M. Bowers
2006 Technical Aspects of a Worked Proboscidean Tusk from Inmachuk River, Seward Peninsula, Alaska. Journal of Archaeological Science 33:1088-1094.
Reuther, Joshua D., Jerold M. Lowenstein, S. Craig Gerlach, Darden Hood, Gary Scheuensthul, and Douglas
2006 The Use of an Improved pRIA technique in the Identification of Protein Residues. Journal of Archaeological Science 33(4):531-537.
Reuther, Joshua D., and S. Craig Gerlach
2005 Testing the “Dicarb Problem”: A Case Study from North Alaska. Radiocarbon 47(3): 359-366.
Term Assistant Professor
PhD, University of Georgia, 2020.
Zooarchaeology, Ethnohistory, Historical Archaeology, Cultures of Island Oceania, Radiocarbon Dating, Socioecological Resilience and Collapse, Environmental Archaeology, Historical Ecology, Animal TranslocationLearn more about Professor Cramb
I am trained primarily as an archaeologist and zooarchaeologist with a strong foundation in archaeological science. I also engage heavily with ethnohistoric and ethnographic research. I am very interested in the interactions between people and their environments in the recent past. I am particularly fascinated by the factors that contribute to socioecological persistence or collapse. My primary research sites are located on the remote coral atolls of Manihiki and Rakahanga, in the Northern Cook Islands of East Polynesia. Over the past five years, using a multi-proxy archaeological, historic, and ethnographic data set, I constructed the first archaeologically informed timeline of cultural change on Manihiki and Rakahanga, identified securely-dated evidence of domestic animals in the Northern Cook Islands, and demonstrated how the local creation of environmentally-informed cultural institutions articulates with environmental changes, population growth, and European contact. My continuing body of scholarship contributes to discussions on human-environmental interactions, long-term sustainability in marginal environments, and animal translocations. I am currently working with historical and zooarchaeological data to explain long-term patters of human-animal interaction in Oceania. This includes identifying region-wide patterns of dog introduction and loss as well as fish-use patterns on coral atolls.
I joined the UAF Department of Anthropology in the fall of 2020, where I manage the zooarchaeological comparative collection housed in BUNN 408. I am also expanding my regional foci to include the Alaskan Interior where I am working to understand the historical and environmental factors associated with site abandonment.
I am also a co-administrator for the Society for American Archaeology’s Zooarchaeology and Island and Coastal Archaeology Interest Groups.