Hopi Festival Starts Saturday at the Museum of Northern Arizona
Hopi clans made their lives on hot, dry mesas in northern Arizona. It could not have been an easy life, but somehow they found time to create intricately designed pottery, elaborately detailed kachina dolls and other works of art. Artists passed their knowledge to subsequent generations, who added new skills such as painting and quilt making. You can see such work at the 79th annual Hopi Festival of Arts and Culture next weekend at the Museum of Northern Arizona in Flagstaff. http://www.azcentral.com/arizonarepublic/arizonaliving/articles/2012/06/19/20120619flagstaff-hopi-festival.html#ixzz1yjFRtLpS and http://azdailysun.com/lifestyles/carrying-their-culture-to-us/article_af998c1c-055e-5b9d-85b5-f483ce8b7af5.html
Ancient Irrigation in Sonoran Desert Shows Humans’ Long-standing ‘Love-Hate’ Relationship With Environment
Current debates about climate change notwithstanding, humans have tried to harness their environment since time immemorial, from the invention of fire to irrigation. Dr. James Watson looks into the past for clues to the future, reconstructing historical discoveries to understand bygone populations and lessons learned by studying the ways they adapted to their changing environment. He is especially interested in understanding prehistoric human adaptations in desert ecosystems and the role that local resources play. Fieldwork in northern Sonora, Mexico, has revealed what he calls a “love-hate” interaction between early inhabitants and their surroundings http://
BYU Excavations at Fremont-era Wolf Village
For all of his life, Richard Wolf has lived and farmed property near Goshen. He and his father have raised cattle for decades. As a child, he found arrowheads and grinders. But Wolf never imagined that just below the surface was some incredible history. For several months, the Department of Anthropology at BYU has been unearthing a Fremont Indian village at what is known as Wolf Village. It is located at the mouth of Goshen Canyon near Current Creek. http://www.deseretnews.com/article/865557924/BYU-program-helps-unearth-significant-Fremont-Indian-pit-house-in-Goshen.html and http://www.ksl.com/?nid=148&sid=20929007&s_cid=rss-148
Bering Land Bridge Open 2,000 Years Earlier than Previously Suspected?
A new study of lake sediment cores from Sanak Island in the western Gulf of Alaska suggests that deglaciation there from the last Ice Age took place as much as1,500 to 2,000 years earlier than previously thought, opening the door for earlier coastal migration models for the Americas. The Sanak Island Biocomplexity Project, funded by the National Science Foundation, also concluded that the maximum thickness of the ice sheet in the Sanak Island region during the last glacial maximum was 70 meters – or about half that previously projected – suggesting that deglaciation could have happened more rapidly than earlier models predicted. Results of the study were just published in the professional journal, Quaternary Science Reviews. The study, led by Nicole Misarti of Oregon State University, is important because it suggests that the possible coastal migration of people from Asia into North America and South America – popularly known as “First Americans” studies – could have begun as much as two millennia earlier than the generally accepted date of ice retreat in this area, which was 15,000 years before present. http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2012-06/osu-ndd061912.php#
Ancient Extinctions Illustrate Effects of Climatic Change
In a paper published June 12 in the journal Nature Communications, UCLA researchers and colleagues reveal that not long after the last ice age, the last woolly mammoths succumbed to a lethal combination of climate warming, encroaching humans and habitat change — the same threats facing many species today. “We were interested to know what happened to this species during the climate warming at the end of the last ice age because we were looking for insights into what might happen today due to human-induced climate change,” said Glen MacDonald, director of UCLA’s Institute of the Environment and Sustainability (IoES). “The answer to why woolly mammoths died off sounds a lot like what we expect with future climate warming.” http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/06/120612144809.htm
Preserving Tucson’s Tubercular History
Between 1880 and 1945, if you had tuberculosis, the prescription was Arizona. Now Tucson’s history as the tuberculosis capital of the United States may soon be preserved by the National Register of Historic Places. The State Historic Preservation Office will review a multiple properties proposal next month that argues that the disease shaped Tucson’s development. The review is the first step in getting the properties on the national register. “A lot of what we are today as a city owes a lot of its roots to that particular disease” and the impact it had on Tucson’s architecture, said Jennifer Levstik, historic preservation consultant for the city of Tucson Historic Preservation Office. http://azstarnet.com/news/science/health-med-fit/historical-status-sought-for-sites-tb-patients-used/article_9b3b6c4f-2a07-57c7-bbbd-60ed524241a8.html
Exploring Canyon de Chelly National Monument
The Jeep forges on as Yazzie takes us deeper into the past in a canyon that overflows with human history, reverence, and despair. Though you can gaze down into the canyon from the monument’s road, to reach the inner sanctum you must rely on one of the local Navajo tour guides. Although the monument was added to the National Park System in 1931 by President Herbert Hoover, the agreement left most of the landscape as the property of the Navajo Nation. http://www.nationalparkstraveler.com/2012/06/exploring-canyon-de-chelly-national-monument9929
Mohave Peoples Fight to Protect Sacred Site
The Mojave people believe the Topock Maze, a 600-year-old geoglyph, receives the souls of the departed, serving as the spiritual pathway to the afterlife. The sacred place is integral to the Mojave way of life, beliefs, traditions, culture and religion. The Fort Mojave Indian Tribe hopes the power of prayer can protect the Topock Maze in Needles, California, and the surrounding sacred areas along the Lower Colorado River, from further pollution by toxic chemicals from a Pacific Gas & Electric (PG&E)-owned gas compressor station and treatment plant within the Maze area and the roughly 150 wells in California and Arizona on either side of the Colorado River. http://indiancountrytodaymedianetwork.com/2012/06/21/the-mojave-need-prayers-to-protect-the-sacred-topock-maze-in-needles-california-119660
Forest Fire near Mesa Verde
The Montezuma County Sheriff’s Office said residents have evacuated due to the Weber Canyon Fire near the town of Mancos. Montezuma Sheriff’s Office Lt. Ted Meador said the wildfire has burned between 500 to 600 acres and is 3 miles south of the town of Mancos. The sheriff’s office has sent out emergency notifications for residents to stand by to evacuate. Meador said some residents have already evacuated from their homes. http://www.thedenverchannel.com/news/31219019/detail.html
Artist-in-Residence Presentation at Anasazi Heritage Center
Carol Chamberland, Artist-in-Residence for Canyons of the Ancients National Monument, will share her work and vision with the public at 1 p.m. on Sunday, July 1 at the Bureau of Land Management Anasazi Heritage Center. Museum admission is free all day on lecture days. Chamberland is the third artist this year to spend a week exploring and absorbing the southwest Colorado landscape and creating art in response to the experience. Her presentation will discuss both materials and technique, and comment on how her archeological background has influenced the creative process. The Artist-in-Residence program promotes awareness through art of the exceptional places protected within the BLM’s National Landscape Conservation System, and provides an opportunity for learning and dialogue about the value of preserving public lands. The Artist-in-Residence program promotes awareness through art of the exceptional places protected within the BLM’s National Landscape Conservation System, and provides an opportunity for learning and dialogue about the value of preserving public lands.
Lecture Opportunity – Cortez, CO
The Hisatsinom Chapter of the Colorado Archaeological Society is pleased to present Dale Davidson on Tuesday, July 3 at 6:30 PM at the Cortez Cultural Center to discuss Stephen Smith and the Early Development of Cortez, Colorado. Stephen Smith came to Cortez in 1888 and worked for the investors who developed Cortez and the water diversions from the Dolores River. Smith’s business letters, written between 1891-96, are the basis of Dale’s presentation. Prior to his retirement, Dale Davidson was the lead archaeologist at the Bureau of Land Management’s Monticello office. Since retiring, he has worked on numerous archaeological projects including Hawkins Pueblo in Cortez. He also co-authored an Acadia Press series, Images of America, history of Cortez. Contact Bob Bernhart @ 970-739-6772 with questions about this, or any, program.
Online Training Opportunity
An on-line “Writing Preliminary Archaeological Reports” class by archaeologist Allen Dart, RPA, is offered by Tucson’s Old Pueblo Archaeology Center (Old Pueblo) starting Wednesday August 1, 2012. This class has been developed by the Arizona Archaeological Society to provide the necessary knowledge and skills to prepare a usable preliminary report about archaeological survey or excavation projects, including basic descriptions of archaeological project areas, archaeological site locations and descriptions, survey and excavation methods and techniques, artifact comparisons, and interpretation. (For details see http://www.azarchsoc.org/
Latest Features from the Archaeology Channel
The latest installment of the Video News from TAC features the following stories: Famed UK archaeologist and lecturer Dr. Brooklyn Hornswoggle-Smyth expounds on contemporary archaeology in a short film parody by two irreverent UK students, and an interview with Dr. Mark Van Stone, Keynote Speaker for TAC Festival 2012, with a particular focus on the Maya calendar and predictions of the end of the world in 2012. See these stories in the June 2012 edition of this monthly half-hour show, available now on our nonprofit streaming-media Web site, The Archaeology Channel (http://www.
Thanks to Adrienne Rankin for contributions to this week’s newsletter.