Jesse Tune

Jesse Tune
Associate Professor of Anthropology

Research Expertise

  • Ice Age hunter-gatherers
  • Colonization processes
  • Human-environment relationships
  • Human behavioral ecology
  • Lithic technological organization
  • Geoarchaeology
  • Drone-based remote sensing


  • Ph.D., Anthropology, Texas A&M University, 2015
  • M.A., Anthropology, American University, 2010
  • B.S., Anthropology, Middle Tennessee State University, 2008
  • B.S., Aerospace, Middle Tennessee State University, 2008


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About Dr. Tune

Dr. Tune is a prehistoric archaeologist who studies Ice Age human migrations and the colonization of new landscapes. His research focuses on investigating the relationships between humans and the environment – specifically how humans adapt to new or changing environments.

His current research involves documenting the early human occupation of the Colorado Plateau, investigating lithic technology in the Southeast United States, and studying how humans adapt to limited resources.

He has worked at archaeological sites and studied artifact collections in Alabama, Colorado, Kentucky, Indiana, Mississippi, New Mexico, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, and Utah. In addition to excavating mastodons in Tennessee, he has worked on some of the oldest archaeological sites in North America, including the Debra L. Friedkin (Texas) and Topper (South Carolina) sites.

Dr. Tune is the Director of the Hunter-Gatherer Research Collaborative and Lab.

Selected publications

Jesse W. Tune 2020 Hunter-Gatherer Occupation of the Central Colorado Plateau during the Pleistocene-Holocene Transition. American Antiquity. 85(3):573-590.

Heather L. Smith and Jesse W. Tune (editors) 2019 Fluted Point Technologies: An Interregional Perspective. PaleoAmerica 5(2):105-108.

Jesse W. Tune, Michael R. Waters, Kayla Schmalle, Larisa R. G. DeSantis, George D. Kamenov. 2018 Assessing the Proposed Pre-LGM Human Occupation of North America at Coats-Hines-Litchy, Tennessee, and Other Sites. Quaternary Science Reviews 186:47-59.

D. Shane Miller and Jesse W. Tune. 2018 When the Levee Breaks: How an Ant Hill and a Deer on a Mound Made Us Re-Think the Effect of the Younger Dryas. In The Archaeology of Everyday Matters, edited by S. E. Price and P. J. Carr, pp. 14-23. University Press of Florida.

Jesse W. Tune 2016 The Clovis-Cumberland-Dalton Succession: Settling into the Midsouth United States During the Pleistocene-to-Holocene Transition. PaleoAmerica 2(3):261-273.

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