Archaeology Southwest’s Paul Reed Explains How Oil and Gas Development Threatens the Chaco Landscape
Chaco Culture National Historical Park, and affiliated sites on nearby Navajo Nation and Bureau of Land Management lands, are designated as a World Heritage Site – one of only 22 such sites in the United States and the only such site jointly managed with BLM. While the park is considered the crown jewel of the area, the surrounding public lands have upwards of 2,000 cultural sites, created by Pueblo, Navajo and other groups. Unfortunately, these lands, cultural sites, traditions and peoples are now very much at risk. Oil and gas drilling has moved closer and closer to Chaco Canyon. http://bit.ly/1QjurZi – Albuquerque Journal
Final Appeals Denied by French Courts, Auction of Sacred Objects to Continue as Planned
The Hopi Tribe has lost another overseas battle over sacred ceremonial items. French government officials have turned down the Hopi Tribe’s latest request to stop Monday’s sale. It’s the sixth such legal challenge the tribe has lost in the past three years. The Hopi consider their “katsina friends” to be living spirits. And the Hopi Chairman said to lose one is to lose a loved one. http://bit.ly/1GPUZR8 – Fronteras
NY Times Editorial Takes a Critical View of Congress and the Sale of Oak Flat
About an hour east of Phoenix, near a mining town called Superior, men, women and children of the San Carlos Apache tribe have been camped out at a place called Oak Flat for more than three months, protesting the latest assault on their culture. Three hundred people, mostly Apache, marched 44 miles from tribal headquarters to begin this occupation on Feb. 9. The campground lies at the core of an ancient Apache holy place, where coming-of-age ceremonies, especially for girls, have been performed for many generations, along with traditional acorn gathering. It belongs to the public, under the multiple-use mandate of the Forest Service, and has had special protections since 1955, when President Dwight D. Eisenhower decreed the area closed to mining — which, like cattle grazing, is otherwise common in national forests — because of its cultural and natural value. President Richard M. Nixon’s Interior Department in 1971 renewed this ban. http://nyti.ms/1FN03DT – New York Times
An Amazing Contribution to Study of Paleolithic America: The Life of George Frison
Nobody understands hunters quite like George Frison. The 90-year-old Wyoming archaeologist has spent much of his professional career conducting research on ancient bison, woolly mammoth and pronghorn kill sites. One time, to better understand if paleo-Indian [sic] hunters could kill a mammoth with an atlatl, he conducted an unusual experiment. “He’s probably the only guy in the world to have killed an elephant with a Clovis point and an atlatl,” said Todd Surovell, a University of Wyoming associate professor and director of the Frison Institute, named in the honor of the professor emeritus. http://bit.ly/1dEO16A – Billings Gazette
National Parks in New Mexico Need $102 Million for Basic Maintenance
National parks and monuments like Carlsbad Caverns, Chaco Canyon, White Sands and Bandelier attract hundreds of thousands of visitors to New Mexico each year. Those numbers are expected to increase next year when the National Park Service begins what is expected to be a huge public relations push for its centennial celebration. But national parks and monuments across the country, including in New Mexico, have maintenance and repair projects that remain on the drawing boards due to chronic underfunding in a broken federal budget system, park supporters say. http://bit.ly/1Qjs4Ws – Santa Fe New Mexican
Wise Stewardship of Canyon of the Ancients Allays Local Concerns Over Monument Status
When local people first heard that President Bill Clinton wanted to designate a new 164,000-acre national monument in the red-rock desert of southwestern Colorado, many saw the new “Canyons of the Ancients” as a change for the worse. “We thought, ‘They’re going to start taking away our rights,’ ” says Rodney Carriker, who runs horse-packing trips on the public lands involved. http://bit.ly/1PWP2b0 – High County News
Digging Deeper on Park Stewardship: Social Values and Landscape Preservation
‘Social value’ is not a term that national park organizations in the United States, Canada and New Zealand have tended to use. In fact, when park organizations have ventured into the challenging territory of recognizing the values of people―it has generally been to consider the values of ‘traditional peoples and practices’ of a distant bygone era, or to subsume the social into the consideration of historic significance.
http://bit.ly/1I27g3L – Living Landscape Observer
The Archaeological Conservancy Moves to Stabilize Garcia Canyon Pueblito
Preservation in action! The stabilization of Garcia Canyon Pueblito in northern New Mexico has begun! This significant site was acquired by the Conservancy in 2011 and is one of the few tangible remnants from the Gobernator Period (circa 1690-1780), a time of social and political upheaval. The site contains well-preserved petroglyphs and a midden, but the pueblito desperately needs to be stabilized. http://bit.ly/1K2DgqH – The Archaeological Conservancy
Indian Pueblo Cultural Center Awarded Rare Seed Stocks (Video)
The center was awarded 28 types of rare, endangered seeds that are native to New Mexico and Arizona. They include Jemez melon, Cochiti chile, and San Felipe corn. The head of the center’s community garden, planted them Wednesday. He says the fruits and vegetables they grow will feed Native American families. Some of their seeds will be preserved for future generations. http://bit.ly/1FjsIwV – KRQE News
Could Human DNA Contain a Record of Environmental Stress?
A new study by anthropologists from The University of Texas at Austin shows for the first time that epigenetic marks on DNA can be detected in a large number of ancient human remains, which may lead to further understanding about the effects of famine and disease in the ancient world. The field of epigenetics looks at chemical modifications to DNA, known as epigenetic marks, that influence which genes are expressed — or turned on or off. Some epigenetic marks stay in place throughout a person’s life, but others may be added or removed in response to environmental factors such as diet, disease and climate. If the modification is made to sperm or egg DNA, the changes could be inherited. http://bit.ly/1FVycCF – UT News
Opportunity to View Impressive Petroglyph/Solstice Marker – Springerville AZ
Weather permitting, one of the more interesting and accessible summer solstice markers will be observable at the ancient village of Casa Malpais on Saturday, June 20th. The tour will be leaving the Springerville Heritage Center (418 E. Main St., Springerville) at 11:00am. Regular tour prices apply. Call 928-333-5375 for reservations.
Update/Correction Sharon Greenhill’s Presentation to Be Held June 24, Rather than June 2
As part of the Four Corners Lecture Series, Southwest Colorado Canyons Alliance is pleased to present Sharon Edgar Greenhill on Wednesday, June 24, 7:00 p.m., at the Sunflower Theatre, 8 East Main Street in Cortez, CO. Greenhill will present the award-winning documentary Agave is Life which chronicles the 10,000 year-old story of mankind’s symbiotic relationship with the agave plant. Click HERE for more information about this and other presentations by Southwest Colorado Canyons Alliance during the Four Corners Lecture Series.
Lecture Opportunity – Tucson
The Arizona Archaeological and Historical Society (AAHS) is pleased to present Dr. Jesse A. M. Ballenger and Dr. Jonathan Mabry on Monday, June 15th at 7:30 pm in the University Medical Center’s Duval Auditorium (1500 N Campbell Ave, Tucson 85724), who will discuss “Cochise Culture Revisited: 2014-2015 Excavations at Desperation Ranch.” Meetings are free and open to the public. For more information please contact John D. Hall at email@example.com with questions about this or any other AAHS program, or visit the AAHS website: http://bit.ly/1uhONZh
Lecture Opportunity – Winslow
The Homolovi Chapter of AAS (Arizona Archaeological Society) is pleased to present Al Cornell on Wednesday, 10 June, at 7 p.m. at the Winslow Chamber of Commerce Visitor Center (Historic Lorenzo Hubbell Trading Post), 523 W. Second St, Winslow, AZ, with a presentation, demonstration and hands-on experience with the methods of making cordage as the ancients did (thigh rolling and finger weaving of cord, thread and rope). For question or further information, call Sky Roshay at 928-536-3307. You can also join us for dinner at 5 p.m. at the Historic La Posada Turquoise Room (on your own tab).
Tour Opportunity – Winslow
On Saturday-Sunday June 27-28, Rich Lange leads Old Pueblo Archaeology Center’s “Homolovi State Park, Rock Art Ranch, and the Multi-Kiva Site Cultural Heritage Tour” near Winslow. It visits post-1300 ancestral Hopi sites where Chuck Adams and Lange have led the Arizona State Museum’s Homol’ovi Research Program archaeological excavations since the 1980s, including this year at the Multi-Kiva site; plus the Rock Art Ranch petroglyphs in Chevelon Canyon. $60 per person fee (Old Pueblo and Pueblo Grande Museum Auxiliary members $50) includes site entry fees but no transportation, lodging, or meals. Reservations and payment required by June 24: 520-798-1201 or firstname.lastname@example.org.