I’ll be brief today because there is so much of interest in today’s edition. We’re pleased to share powerful journalism from High Country News as our lead item. This is an affecting and in-depth story of cultural patrimony long separated from the Acoma Pueblo community. If you can’t begin there right now, please set aside some time when you’re not pressured. It is worth a careful read.
For Archaeology Southwest members (thank you), I want to let you know that the Archaeology Southwest Magazine issue on the Casa Grande Community is in the mail as of today. We are grateful to the authors, photographers, artists, drafters, editors, designers, and U.S. Post Office for getting us over the finish line and into your homes. I hope you find insights and enjoyment.
Take good care, everyone. Until next week,
President & CEO, Archaeology Southwest
Continuing Coverage: The Return of the Acoma Shield
The shield and its siblings were passed down from father to son. The caretaker prayed with them daily when they were not being used as a symbol of protection in ceremonies or festivals, when other tribal members could be in their presence. But the shields never belonged to him alone. According to Acoma law, they were collectively owned; they could not leave the pueblo, nor could they be sold or destroyed. They were considered living beings rather than works of art. https://bit.ly/3iCDv0Z – High Country News
Commentary: Buying and Selling Indigenous Cultural Patrimony Is Harmful
How would you react if your ancestors’ skeletons were kept locked in private or museum closets? How would you feel if your ceremonial objects, so central to the practice of your religion, were auctioned off, mounted on walls or placed behind glass, forever depriving you of the rituals and traditions associated with them? And how would you like your culture to be defined by someone else’s imagination of who you are? https://bit.ly/3fJjBPS – Robert Alan Hershey in High Country News
The Pueblo Revolt, 340 Years Later
Today is the 340th anniversary of Po’pay’s Rebellion, also known as the Pueblo Rebellion of 1680. On August 10, 1680 there was a successful Indigenous uprising in the southwest where agricultural practices played a role in the survival of the people. Ohkay Owingeh leader Po’pay, which translates to pumpkin, was from the summer clan. …Our guest today is Matthew Martinez from Ohkay Owingeh Pueblo and he is the Deputy Director for the Museum of Indian Arts and Culture. He shares more details about the revolt, Po’pay and the role two young boys played in organizing the rebellion. https://bit.ly/3iBBull – Indian Country Today (link includes video; interview begins after the 6:35 mark)
Continuing Coverage: Upcoming Virtual Meetings on Chaco-Area Management Plans
Four virtual open houses about the draft Farmington Mancos-Gallup Resource Management plan will be held this month, which will allow the affected communities to submit public comment. …The U.S. Bureau of Land Management and the U.S. Bureau of Indian Affairs are hosting the events, following five virtual public meetings the agencies held in May. …The open houses will be held from 9 a.m. to noon and 1 to 4 p.m. Aug. 26 to 29. The first day will be focused on comments from the Navajo Nation and Navajo tribal members, and the Aug. 27 session will be for the Pueblos and other tribes. The last two days, Aug. 28 and 29, will be comment periods for the general public. https://bit.ly/3af1oIZ – Durango Herald
FAQs about the meetings are addressed here: https://bit.ly/2DTGMda
New Superintendent for Southeast Utah Group Area National Parks
Patricia Trap assumed her new role as superintendent of the Southeast Utah Group Area National Parks on August 2. Kate Cannon, who held the position since 2006, retired in January. The group includes both Arches and Canyonlands National Parks, as well as Hovenweep and Natural Bridges National Monuments. Trap’s tenure in Utah begins as she comes off a detail as acting superintendent of Mount Rushmore National Park since January of this year. https://bit.ly/31GLEdU – Moab Sun News
Continuing Coverage: Moab-Area Lease Sales Canceled
On Aug. 11, the Bureau of Land Management announced that they would remove land located within Grand and San Juan counties from the oil and gas lease sale during the week of September 28. The proposed collection of parcels had raised concerns among residents, local government and conservation groups for its sheer size: the forty-nine parcels stretched across 82,010 acres near National Parks. https://bit.ly/30O1wvZ – Moab Sun News
Statement by the National Parks Conservation Association: https://bit.ly/2PX0SGh
Forum: Public Lands in Utah and the United States West
The conversation ranged from the early creation of National Parks and National Forests to contemporary conflicts over the role of government in the rural West. Speakers considered how the meaning, use, and management of public lands has changed over time and jointly reflected on what the future might hold. https://bit.ly/33RS6kS – Living Landscape Observer (link includes video of forum)
Stabilization at Lowry Pueblo
Lowry Pueblo will undergo stabilization work this month in collaboration with the Zuni Tribe, Canyons of Ancients National Monument and Mesa Verde National Park. The 1,000-year-old Great Kiva and Great House have a peculiar moisture problem that has caused erosion at its base. https://bit.ly/31H9t5g – The Journal
Grants from USDA, NEH Fund Initiatives at Crow Canyon
When it comes to environmental science, the Four Corners region serves as a “living classroom” for dealing with challenges such as drought. The Crow Canyon Archaeological Center, a research institute and “living classroom” in Cortez, has received several grants that will support research, education and partnership opportunities primarily for the Navajo Nation and the Hopi Tribe. https://bit.ly/2Y8bHd5 – The Journal
Commentary: Indigenous Ecological Knowledge and Climate Science
In the U.S., Native Americans have long been regarded as ecosystem architects, taming nature and molding it in ways to sustain their needs for food and shelter. The anthropological evidence suggests this is true in most places around the world. … Yet recently, some scientists have been attributing such disruptions to the ecological landscape to climate change, not to the deliberate choices made by Native people. https://bit.ly/2XQTXTi – Marc D. Abrams in Scientific American
Field School Culture Is Changing—For the Better
Traditional field schools foster “the archaeology cowboy mentality … working really hard during the day but playing really hard at night—and drinking a ton,” says Katrina Eichner, an archaeologist at the University of Idaho. If directors of these field schools encourage that atmosphere, she adds, “it devolves into a frat party.” Over time, that cowboy culture gets perpetuated across academic generations. https://bit.ly/2DUTxnP – Science
Blog: Abalone Shell Trade in the Ancient Southwest
Southern Arizona is known for being a hub in prehistoric shell trade networks. While many people are familiar with the Hohokam shell industry and its focus on shells from the Gulf of California, connections with coastal California are less famous. However, a small number of Tucson-area sites dating to the Cienega phase (800 BC-50 AD) are notable for spectacular assemblages of Pacific coastal shell, particularly abalone. https://desert.com/abalone/ – Erina Gruner at the Field Journal
Blog: An Introduction to the Study of Ground Stone
Why do we study ground stone artifacts and ecofacts? The simple answer is that they can tell us a lot about the past. Ground stone can help us answer all sorts of questions about life in the past, including subsistence and agriculture, trade, population movement, craft production, and technology. Ground stone analysis is a multifaceted method that involves an interesting combination of behavioral and technological approaches, ethnographic analogy, cross-cultural comparison, previous archaeological research reviews, and experimentation. https://bit.ly/2PH6pR7 – Tessa Branyan at the Preservation Archaeology blog
Funding Opportunity: AAHS Subvention Award
The Arizona Archaeological and Historical Society (AAHS) is pleased to announce the 2020 competitive subvention award program for AAHS members. The purpose of this program is to provide money in support of the publication of digital or print books or Kiva journal articles that further AAHS’s mission. Many sources of grant funding do not support publication costs. Through this program, AAHS can provide occasional funding to prevent this barrier to the sharing of research results. This year, awards up to $5,000 will be considered. https://www.az-arch-and-hist.org/grants/subvention-awards/
Online Resources, Events, and Opportunities to Help
Please keep sharing these with us, and we will keep helping to get the word out. Our inbox is firstname.lastname@example.org.
From the Arizona State Museum: In the summer of 2019, conservation interns Katerina Acuña, Wintherthur/University of Delaware Program in Art Conservation graduate student, and Simon Belcher, UA Materials Science and Engineering graduate student, reconstructed a ceramic vessel under the guidance of Dr. Nancy Odegaard, conservator, professor, and ASM Head of Preservation. Time lapse video (opens at YouTube): https://youtu.be/5fYIxSRJa58.
From the Four Corners Lecture Series: On Thursday, August 13, at 4:00 p.m. MDT, Robert Weiner will present “Chaco’s Monumental Roads: New Fieldwork and Insights.” Registration: https://bit.ly/2CjX9zh. For recent presentations, visit: https://www.youtube.com/user/CrowCanyonConnects
From the Indian Pueblo Cultural Center: Welcome to the Pueblo Revolt Online Exhibit. The Pueblo Revolt of 1680 was a revolution against the harsh subjugation of the Pueblos by the Spanish. It is the only successful Native uprising against a colonizing power in North America. In the past, we’ve held programming and events at our Center on this important anniversary, attracting people from far and wide. With current global circumstances preventing in-person visits, IPCC staff have been hard at work to bring you an online exhibit on the Pueblo Revolt, with special digital programming throughout the month of August. https://indianpueblo.org/revolt/
From Old Pueblo Archaeology Center: On Tuesday, Sept 22, from 8:00 a.m. to noon MST, archaeologist Al Dart will lead “Autumn Equinox Tour to Los Morteros and Picture Rocks Petroglyph Sites” starting near Silverbell Rd & Linda Vista Blvd, Marana, AZ. More information and fees: https://bit.ly/2DS5w5q. We also offer a 12-session “Archaeology of the Southwest” online adult education class with archaeologist Allen Dart online via Zoom from 6:30-8:30 p.m. each Wednesday Sept. 16–Dec. 16 (no class on Oct 21 or Nov. 25). More information and fees: https://bit.ly/30NpiIj.
We’re happy to help get the word out. Please submit news, publication announcements, and other resources to this link for consideration: https://www.archaeologysouthwest.org/submit-to-sat/