Mera Hertel

Staff Directory

Mera Hertel

Mera Hertel

Graphic Design Manager

 Emai Mera Hertel
 (618) 394-0221
 Curriculum Vitae (PDF)

General Interest/Area of Focus

Mera Hertel began seasonal archaeological work for the University of Illinois in 1989, intermittently working for the Department of Anthropology until 1992. From 1992 to 1994 she was employed with Southern Illinois University Edwardsville’s Anthropology Department. In 1994 she returned to U of I permanently and became a valuable part of the ISAS team. Mera has over 20 years of graphic design experience in addition to her substantial knowledge of field and laboratory work.

Mera oversees the graphic productions at the American Bottom Field Station. Managing ABFS’s production and photography team, she coordinates the design and assemblage of high-quality photographic figures, maps, and illustrations for use in reports, publications, and various media works. She produces and assembles reports in-house, and routinely trains supervisory staff in field photography procedures. Helping to orchestrate and regulate photographic policy and guidelines, she compiled the ISAS Field Photography Manual for use by all Illinois State Archaeological Survey staff. Mera oversees ABFS’s digital photographic collections, historic map archives, and digital library. She serves as a cartographer, photographer, illustrator, researcher, and site file coordinator. She also performs rim profiling/ceramic analysis, poster and cover design, fieldwork, cemetery investigations, and metal-detection survey.

Mera’s general areas of interest include the prehistory and history of the American Bottom region in Illinois. In her spare time she enjoys documenting and helping to restore lost and forgotten cemeteries throughout St. Clair, Madison and Monroe Counties. In 2011 she helped found the Historic Cemetery Preservation Association in Illinois (HCPA at Over the years she’s conducted many large-scale volunteer cemetery restoration projects, documented thousands of unrecorded graves, and photographed over 50 private prehistoric artifact collections as well as many historical documents & books.

Sampling of Mera’s Work

Sample of Mera Hertel's work