Formal headshot of Paul White.

Paul White

Associate Professor


Dr. White’s research traces the historical paths of industrialization, and with a particular focus on the North American mining industry. He has two decades of experience in the archaeological documentation of mining sites in the American West. His research takes a broad perspective of the industry, examining the social, technological, and environmental transformations associated with past and present mining, and including how historical relationships perpetuate colonial relations in the present. He has worked also as a consultant for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and conducted safety hazard assessments on abandoned mining lands. His recent book, The Archaeology of American Mining (2017), which synthesizes 50 years of archaeological scholarship, received the 2019 Mining History Association’s Clark Spence Award.

Research interests

Space and place, materiality, Western mining, environmental history, 19th and 20th-century colonialism, ethnohistory, with regional foci in the American West and the Pacific.

Courses taught

  • GEOG 312: Cartography (Spring 2020)
  • GEOG 314: Field Methods (Fall 2019)


  • Ph.D., Anthropology, Brown University, 2008
  • M.S., Industrial History and Archaeology, Michigan Technological University, 1999
  • M.A. Anthropology, University of Auckland, 1996
  • B.A. Anthropology and Geography, University of Auckland, 1995

Selected publications

  • White, P. 2017. The Archaeology of American Mining. Gainesville: University Press of Florida.
  • White, P. 2016. The Archaeology of Underground Mining Landscapes. Historical Archaeology 26(1): 153-67.
  • White, P. 2010 (2012). The Rise and Fall of the California Stamp: Historical and Archaeological Perspectives on the Aging of a
  • Technology. IA: Journal of the Society for Industrial Archeology 36(1): 64-83. (Winner of Robert M. Vogel Prize, Society for Industrial Archeology.)
  • White, P. 2008. Claiming an "Unpossessed Country": Monuments to Ownership and Dispossession in Death Valley. In
  • Archaeologies of Placemaking: Monuments, Memories, and Engagement in Native North America, One World Archaeology series, vol. 59, edited by Patricia E. Rubertone, pp. 135-60. Walnut Creek, Calif.: Left Coast Press.
  • White, P. 2006 (2008). Troubled Waters: Timbisha Shoshone, Miners, and Dispossession at Warm Spring. IA: Journal of the Society for Industrial Archeology 32 (1): 4-24.