Like you, I was excitedly planning to attend this fall’s CNEHA conference in Plymouth, Massachusetts. That meeting would have commemorated the anniversary of the Pilgrims’ 1620 landing in Plymouth and was being co-sponsored by the Society for Post Medieval Archaeology. A team of CNEHA stalwarts, including David Landon, Christa Beranek, and Karen Metheny were on the organizing team. However, as it true with so many things, the Covid 19 Pandemic has caused us to pause and take stock of our plans. Acting out of an abundance of caution and with our membership’s health in mind, we have decided to postpone the Plymouth Conference to 2022. Our plan is to host an online conference this fall. You should have received an e-mailed survey discussing various options for that conference. Although, it will be challenging to replicate the fellowship and camaraderie that characterizes our annual fall conference, we will do our best to create a worthwhile virtual alternative. Our hope and expectation is that we will be back on track with a physical conference in 2021 at St. Mary’s City. For those of you eager to follow in the footsteps of the Pilgrims, don’t fret, our Plymouth Conference Committee is already working on a rescheduled conference. We should be heading to Massachusetts in 2022.
I would be remiss if I did not note, that we are living in a period of great social unrest. Police brutality and the stark inequities visible in our society have led to protests across the United States and internationally. CNEHA was born during the Civil Rights Movement and historical archaeology has long worked to illuminate the lives of individuals overlooked by traditional histories, especially people of color, women, and working-class folks. As archaeologists we are more than just silent witnesses to the past. Through our research and our publications we can provide future generations with a useful past that informs a better, more inclusive, and more equitable future. Thank you for your patience and forbearance during these challenging times. Stay well and if you are housebound and at loose ends, consider sharing some of your research through a virtual paper this fall or an article for our journal Northeast Historical Archaeology.
Rich Veit, CNEHA Chair