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How to Complete an Archaeological Literature Search

The Antiquities Section is happy to help facilitate records searches for archaeologists at our Rio Grande office.  Please refer to your land managing agency, or contract holder, concerning your literature search requirements and needs.  Due to the protected nature of the archaeology records we require a State of Utah Archaeological Permit administered by PLPCO for access.

To conduct a literature search:

  • Schedule an appointment with records staff at Be prepared with an estimate with the length of time your search will require. Appointments must be scheduled at least 48 hours in advance. Appointments may fill up a week in advance, so please plan ahead.  Please provide your State Archaeological Permit as part of the request.
  • Request a GIS search with records staff at GIS searches need to be requested at least one full business day in advance please.  GIS searches are not required, but are recommended, and have a minimal charge (depending on the size).

○     Staff will require one of the following: PLSS location (full sections only); shapefile (preferred); USGS map with requested search area clearly marked (.pdf or .jpg). Please include your required buffer in your requested area or clearly state your buffering need.

  • If a GIS search is performed by a Records staff a spreadsheet of projects/reports and sites within your area will be provided. We do not share geospatial data.
  • Prior to the appointment, complete the required paperwork provided by Records staff. Either mail the documents, or bring them the day-of the appointment..
  • Be on time for the appointment. Missed appointments will be assessed a no-show fee.
  • Once onsite you will be required to pull each required document from the archives.  Additionally you’ll need to search newly received records not yet archived.
  • Copies and/or scans of the documents can be made on our machine for a charge. Feel free to bring your own scanner to minimize these charges.
  • Records staff refiles all pulled records- please do not refile your own records.
  • Time spent searching the records is charged. If needed, please request our fee schedule.  Payment is required at the end of the search and can be completed with a credit card (Visa or Mastercard) or check.

We always recommend checking the records of your landowner for information potentially missing from our files.  There are often records which were not submitted, mis-filed/plotted in our records, or just plain missing from our collection.