Director of Operations – Illinois
Prehistoric Ceramics Specialist
Rich Herndon was born in Augsburg, West Germany, in 1969 at an army base hospital. In 1973, his family moved back to the States and lived in South Carolina close to his father’s side of the family. Rich continued to live in South Carolina until graduating from the University of South Carolina in 1991 with a bachelor’s degree in anthropology. At that time, he moved to Hattiesburg, Mississippi, and earned a master’s degree in anthropology in 1995. Rich then moved to Carbondale, Illinois, to earn a doctorate degree in anthropology–a goal he still has. Rich’s first field school was with the University of South Carolina at Mulberry Plantation under the direction of Gail Wagner (Mississippian), and his second field school was under Ed Jackson at the University of Southern Mississippi at Little Spanish Fort (Middle Woodland [Marksville]). Lastly, his third field school was at Southern Illinois where he directed excavations at the Hayes Creek Site (Mississippian).
Rich has taught anthropology and archaeology courses at three separate universities, including Southern Mississippi, Southern Illinois, and Southeast Missouri State. He has conducted Section 106 and Section 404 investigations throughout the eastern United States since 1991, including in South Carolina, Alabama, Mississippi, Tennessee, Kentucky, Indiana, Illinois, Michigan, Missouri, Wisconsin, New York, and Connecticut. He has also worked in Puerto Rico and Barbados helping to conduct excavations at a ceremonial center near Ponce and a historic slave cemetery on the Newton Plantation, respectively.
When not working on archaeology, Rich enjoys woodworking, genealogical research, book making, and buying his wife many pairs of shoes. Rich also spends time hiking and playing on both indoor and outdoor soccer leagues.