In honor of Ken Burkett receiving a coveted Society of American Archaeology national award, both the PA Senate and the House of Representatives, as well as the House of Representatives of the U.S. Congress, presented him recently with ceremonial “Citations.” Ken is a former President, Vice-President and current Treasurer of the Society for Pennsylvania Archaeology (SPA), and Carnegie Museum of Natural History Field Associate since 1983. He is also SPA local North Fork Chapter 29 past President and current Treasurer. Ken is the current Executive Director and past Board President of the Jefferson County History Center since 2008.
Senate of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, Harrisburg: Senator Cris Dush and Senator Scott Hutchinson, Jefferson County and Clarion County Sponsors. The Citation document was presented in a ceremony on the Senate floor by Senator Dush on April 6th at the beginning of their session at 11 AM.
JCHC took a caravan of guests from JCHC and SPA North Fork 29 members, as well as family to the ceremony. Photos were taken of Ken receiving his citation from both Senators and then a group photo of the guests. Ken’s brothers, Jack and Barry Burkett attended the ceremony and were seated on the floor of the Senate with Ken while the Citation was read.
“Recognized for his outstanding service to Pennsylvania Archaeology, Kenneth Burkett was honored with the SAA 2022 Crabtree Award, given to an outstanding avocational archaeologist who has contributed to advancing local, regional and national archaeology through excavation, research, publication, site or collections preservation. The Senate…congratulates Kenneth Burkett upon his richly deserved recognition…whose many contributions are worthy of deep gratitude and respect.”
House of Representatives of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania: Presented on April 7th by Representative Donna Oberlander. Sponsor (Clarion):
“To his great credit, he is the recipient of numerous awards, including the 1983 SPA Archey Award, the 1998 Eastern State Archaeological Federation Publication Award, the 2015 American Association of State and Local History Leadership in History Award (for the Scripture Rocks Book he co-authored), and the 2017 PA Museums Individual Special Achievement Award.
The House…congratulates Kenneth Burkett upon his well-deserved recognition, proudly notes his exemplary record of service and contributions, in keeping with the highest ideals of this Commonwealth; and offers best wishes for the continuation of his many worthwhile and beneficial endeavors.”
117th United States Congress, Washington, D.C.: Congressman Glen Thompson noted: “This award is well deserved for Kenneth, as he has spent his career conducting archaeological research and excavations in western Pennsylvania, focusing on the lifeways of prehistoric Native Americans who once lived in the Redbank Creek watershed. Kenneth has a true passion for bringing our history to life and sharing the artifacts of the people who walked this Earth before us. Once again, I want to congratulate Kenneth on this well-deserved achievement.” All 3 Citations noted Ken’s archaeology accomplishments, including discovery at age 23 of a Native American burial at Pinnacle Rocks, Elk County in 1975, excavation of the significant Fishbasket site of six Late Woodland Villages along Redbank Creek, which established a new cultural group in western PA, and his work at the Parker’s Landing Petroglyph site on the Allegheny River. Ken also had documented many prehistoric Native American sites and was responsible for dedicating the Fishbasket site (with son Justin), the Parker’s Landing site (Clarion County) and Mead Island Site in Warren County as State Historical Markers.