Founded in 1879, the AIA was chartered by the United States Congress in 1906, in recognition of its role in the development and passage of the Antiquities Act, which Theodore Roosevelt signed into law that year. Today, the AIA remains committed to preserving the world's archaeological resources and cultural heritage for the benefit of people in the present and in the future.
News, Issues, and Initiatives
On March 4, the Senate passed legislation (S. 671) that gives the President the authority to impose restrictions to prevent the import into the United States of cultural materials that have been illegally removed from Iraq since August 1990. Enactment of this legislation is crucial to prevent cultural materials looted from Iraq’s cultural institutions from entering the United States and to help combat the looting of archaeological sites.
On January 8th, 2004, Jane Waldbaum, AIA President, sent the following letter to officials at US AID and the US Army Corps of Engineers requesting that the Iraqi State Board of Antiquities and Heritage (ISBAH) be consulted and that cultural heritage resource management requirements be established...
The 812th Military Police Company, working with the Iraqi police, have again reclaimed items on the "30 Most Wanted List" of antiquities stolen from the Iraq Museum.
It now appears that no action will take place on H.R. 2009, the "Iraq Cultural Heritage Protection Act." A new piece of legislation, S. 671/H.R. 1047, is now in process and contains provisions—although not as strong as H.R. 2009 would have been—for the protection of Iraq's cultural heritage. The AIA supports this piece of legislation and urges the public to help secure its passage.
On September 20, AIA member John M. Russell (Massachusetts College of Art) will go to Iraq to work with the Coalition Provisional Authority as Deputy Senior Advisor to the Iraqi Ministry of Culture.
Nominate a deserving individual or institution for the CHM Award by May 1, 2014.
The bilateral agreement, extended for a period of 5 years, includes new categories of protected cultural materials.
Nominate a deserving organization or individual for the Best Practices Award by May 1, 2014.