Victor Galan is spending a lot of time working outdoors in the summer heat, but that goes with the job as the owner of Deep East Texas Archaeological Consultants (DETAC).
Galan started his business in 1999. DETAC has always been based in The Oldest Town in Texas, but Galan works on projects as far out as Mississippi.
Galan believes he has "carved a niche" for his business in East Texas. He works with local businesses and makes helping the community a priority. DETAC archaeologists conduct Cultural Resource Management (CRM) surveys for poultry farmers with Farm Service Agency loans, local utilities with waterline expansion projects, and other projects that require review by the Texas Historical Commission (THC) or Federal Agencies.
"There aren't really any other contact archaeologist in the area," he said. "The nearest ones are going to be found in Shreveport, Longview or down in Houston."
Galan said that most of his consulting takes place within two hours of Nacogdoches and between I-45 and I-49. Projects can range from private utility right-of-ways to state recreational parks. His main goals are helping clients to be compliant with State and Federal laws, to ensure archaeological sites are protected, and help connect Texans to their past.
The latest project is near Alto at the Caddo Mounds Historic Site.
For around seven hours a day Galan, as a member of the Friends of Caddo Mounds, is helping build a Caddo Grass House under the watch of Phil Cross and his apprentice, Chad Earls. The volunteers began work on the house in June and plan to complete the project in August.
After the Caddo Grass House is built, Galan said that he and other volunteers plan to furnish the house. "Earls is helping with the interior design to turn the house into a home over the next few months," he said. "Other items will be added such as pots, baskets and things the Caddo might have used."
When the Grass House project is completed, Galan can see himself and the Friends of Caddo Mounds "making a cart or wagon similar to those used by the early Spanish."
To know history is to preserve it. DETAC is committed to helping east Texans understand the prehistory and history of the region through helping with archaeological compliance and community service.
Find more information about Deep East Texas Archaeological Consultants in the Nacogdoches County Chamber of Commerce membership directory at www.nacogdoches.org or call 936-554-3435.