Alex, R. his.jpg
Induction Category & YearHistorical 1992
Home TownBettendorf, IA
Davenport, IA
Sturgis, SD

   Robert Alex
Champion of Excellence

 Bob Alex, Ph.D. came to South Dakota on a National Science Foundation funded archaeological excavation in 1972 and returned to the state to serve as the State Archaeologist and Director of the South Dakota State Archeological Research Center (SARC) in Rapid City, where he served until his death in 1988.

Alex was largely responsible for the formation of the reburials law in South Dakota; laws that have become the model for other states. Along with his wife, he founded and sponsored the Northern Hills chapter of the South Dakota Archaeological Society. <p>In 1972 Alex taught at Fort Lewis College, Durango, CO, and in the anthropology department at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee from 1973-1975. He was Chief Archaeologist with the State Historical Preservation Office of Iowa from 1975-1976. <p>In 1976, Alex was named State Archaeologist for South Dakota and became Director of the State Archaeological Research Center (SARC), a program of the South Dakota State Historical Society. Under his direction, the center developed into a comprehensive agency, addressing the archaeological needs of South Dakota. From his study of individual sites and his ongoing surveys of the river-basin cultures, he brought together a unique perspective of man’s impact on South Dakota over the last ten thousand years. <p>Alex's concern for the artifacts stored at State Archaeological Research Center at Fort Meade prompted his advocacy of moving the Center to the more secure and climatically controlled facilities in Rapid City. This move, which was accomplished in early 1987, has assured the preservation of these artifacts, South Dakota’s heritage, for future generations. He also negotiated the return of numerous South Dakota artifact collections that were housed outside of South Dakota. This has facilitated the research of the archaeologists at the Center as well as those who visit the Center. <p>He will always be remembered by those whose lives he touched, and perhaps, most importantly for the teacher he was, promoting South Dakota’s history and heritage at every opportunity.

Home Town (Bettendorf, IA)
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