The Illinois Valley Archaeological Society (IVAS) will meet Tuesday, Nov. 6, at the Dickson Mounds Museum beginning at 7 p.m.

The Illinois Valley Archaeological Society (IVAS) will meet Tuesday, Nov. 6, at the Dickson Mounds Museum beginning at 7 p.m.


Featured speaker will be Dr. Michael Wiant,former director of the Illinois State Museum-Dickson Mounds, who will present a talk titled “The Ancestry of Dogs: Ancient Dog Skeletons from Illinois Contribute to Studies of Dog History.” This event is free and open to the public. Refreshments will be available following the presentation.


Analysis of DNA recovered from the bones of ancient dogs excavated at the Koster site in Greene County, Ill., and others from Asia and Europe, provides new perspective on the timing, location and number of times wolves were domesticated independently. This research also contributes to an understanding of the process of domestication. This image-illustrated presentation recounts the discovery four dog skeletons at the Koster site and subsequent research of these specimens, and it includes a discussion about the larger effort to understand the origins of dogs.


Wiant is the former director of the Illinois State Museum-Dickson Mounds. He has studied Native American history in the Illinois River valley for more than 45 years. He was a member of the team of archaeologists that discovered ancient dog remains at the Koster site in Greene County.


The Illinois State Museum—Dickson Mounds is located between Lewistown and Havana off Illinois Routes 78 and 97. The museum is open free to the public from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. every day. Tours and special programs are available for groups with reservations. For more information call 309-547-3721 or TTY 217-782-9175 or visit the museum’s web site at http://www.illinoisstatemuseum.org/content/welcome-dickson-mounds. Also check out weekly updates on Facebook at “Illinois State Museum – Dickson Mounds.”