A. Looting of Southwest sites reported by archaeologists like
Adolf Bandolier leads to lobbying efforts for protection. In
1892, Casa Grande in New Mexico [Arizona?] becomes the first federal archaeological
reservation set aside by the president.
B. Beginning in 1899, the AIA and American Association for
the Advancement of Science work together to promote a bill to
set aside archaeological and scenic sites of value. Several
bills fail to win support in Congress; finally the Antiquities
Act of 1906 is passed and becomes the first federal preservation
C. Elements of the Antiquities Act:
1) President may set aside archaeological objects, structures,
and sites on federal lands as national monuments.
2) Damage or destruction to any historic or prehistoric object
or site located on federal lands is prohibited and violators
are subject to a fine, imprisonment, or both.
3) Investigations of sites on federal lands, including collection
of objects and excavation, requires a permit.
D. Importance of the Antiquities Act:
1) The authority to set aside national monuments was used
by many presidents; in fact, the Antiquities Act is the authority
of more than a quarter of the units of today's National Park
Service. This authority is still in effect.
2) The punitive provision of the Antiquities Act was successfully
challenged in the case of U.S. v. Diaz, 368 F.Supp. 856 (D.
Ariz. 1973), reversed in 1974, 499 F2d. 113 (9th Cir. 1974).
The uncertainties resulting from this decision led to efforts
to create a new, comprehensive law to protect archaeological
resources on federal lands. The result was the Archaeological
Resources Protection Act of 1979.