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Salado Preservation Initiative Launched

By Matt Peeples, Preservation Archaeologist

As part of Archaeology Southwest’s mission to explore and protect the places of the past, we recently launched a new site protection priority planning effort, the Salado Preservation Initiative (opens as a PDF).

This planning program provides a platform for describing and evaluating archaeological sites and landscapes in need of protection so that we might better determine how to allocate resources and attention toward their long-term preservation. Our current endeavor aims to identify preservation needs for sites linked to our larger research agenda, which focuses on Salado and related developments across the Southwest in the centuries just before the Spaniards arrived.

In order to address this daunting task, we have begun organizing a series of expert workshops and interviews in which we collectively identify the highest-priority places in need of protection. We recently held our first two workshops in Phoenix and Tucson.

In these meetings, we use maps and archaeological site databases compiled from a number of sources to guide participants through different regions of the Southwest and record any on-the-ground information they may have about archaeological resources or specific site protection opportunities. Through this exercise, we create an ever-growing map of high-priority areas for archaeological preservation. Identification of these priority areas will facilitate our continuing engagement with local, state, and federal partners and private landowners in specific site protection activities.

Click here to learn more about the priority planning process and read completed plans for Pinal County and the San Pedro River valley.

Click here to learn more about our Salado research program.

Click here and here to learn more about two of the databases that inform this process.

Phoenix Session

Participants in the December 7 priority planning workshop in Phoenix included (clockwise from left) Glen Rice (Rio Salado Archaeology), Kathy Henderson (Desert Archaeology), Jeff Clark (Archaeology Southwest), Dave Wilcox (Museum of Northern Arizona), Matt Peeples (Archaeology Southwest), Bill Doelle (Archaeology Southwest), and Scott Wood (Tonto National Forest). Not pictured: Andy Laurenzi (Archaeology Southwest).

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