I’m finally home after wrapping up our Archaeology Café season tonight. I’m really pleased with the presentation Samuel Fayuant and I gave. We’ll share the video in next week’s edition.
But now it’s late, and the empty page is a challenge. Especially after I emptied my mental/physical “batteries” over several days running.
I hate to rebuild on negatives—such as the Birthing Panel desecration that has loomed large in the news lately. But anger, frustration, and disbelief are necessary sometimes. That emergency recharge. Which you never thought you would really need.
But you did. I do.
Let’s measure the recovery in the morning.
. . .
My, my, things are looking very different today!
Good sleep, morning exercise, the early dawn micro-profile of the Anna’s hummingbird sitting on her tiny nest, the chattering of the nesting Cooper’s Hawks in my neighbor’s tree. I’m feeling motivated and hopeful again.
The news in today’s edition is a mix. Some stories will enrage you, others will fuel your optimism.
To me, they all reinforce the importance of our work.
I’m headed to the office. Have a great day,
President & CEO, Archaeology Southwest
Banner image: Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, R. E. Burrillo
Continuing Coverage: Vandalism at Birthing Rock
The BLM continues to seek information on the egregious vandalism at Birthing Rock, which is still under investigation. This week, BLM staff conducted an initial emergency treatment around the petroglyphs at Birthing Rock. … If you find graffiti or vandalism, please never attempt to clean or remove graffiti yourself as it could cause further damage. Instead, report it to local authorities as soon as possible. The BLM is offering a $10,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the individual(s) responsible for the vandalism. Bureau of Land Management-Utah | Read More >>
The vandalism came several weeks after a rock climber from Colorado sunk metal bolts into a different petroglyph panel near Moab, sparking an uproar among Indigenous groups and the climbing community. Len Necefer, a member of the Navajo Nation and CEO of Natives Outdoors, posted a 28-minute Instagram video on Tuesday that had nearly 40,000 views within 18 hours where he responded to both incidents and condemned a lack of education about Indigenous history in the U.S. schools. “We are often given the sort of framing,” Necefer said, “that settlers came, there was … a little bit of conflict, the Native people taught the settlers how to grow corn, and then the Natives sort of moved off and went to reservations.” Zak Podmore in the Salt Lake Tribune | Read More >>
Expected Record Visitation Threatens Bears Ears
The Bureau of Land Management said it has increased staffing to help manage visitation since the monument was created. It has also partnered with Friends of Cedar Mesa to add educational signage at a number of sites, as well as port-a-potties along Butler Wash Road. It also developed a stewardship program to provide site monitoring and visitor education. Still, [Vaughn] Hadenfeldt said, that isn’t enough. He suggested it may be time to consider a permit system, similar to the Grand Canyon, to handle the increased tourism. Kate Groetzinger for KUER 90.1 (NPR) | Read More >>
Interview with Secretary Haaland
Well, our national parks and our public lands should tell the story of our country and of all Americans, and I really want to make sure that the story of America is represented. I know that there are a lot of ways that the National Park Service hasn’t fully been able to highlight those particular areas, but certainly, Asian Americans, African Americans, Native Americans, and Hispanic Americans are all part of our country’s history. So to the extent that we can absolutely ensure that they are represented in the stories we tell through our national parks and through our public lands, of course I would be thrilled to see that happen. Deb Haaland and Emily Pennington in Outside Magazine | Read More >>
Video: We Are the Water Missing Home
Nestled a few paces from the U.S.-Mexico border in Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument, Quitobaquito Springs are a rare freshwater source in the middle of the Sonoran Desert. Long before the site was National Park Service land, it was a homestead to the Hia C-ed O’odham, a tribe not recognized by the U.S. government that doesn’t have federally protected lands. In 2020, construction crews building the Trump administration’s 30-foot steel border wall began closing in on the site, and tribal communities across Arizona mounted a months-long fight to stop it. Arizona Illustrated (AZPM) | Watch Now >>
Commentary: Confirm Beaudreau as Interior Deputy Secretary
Tommy [Beaudreau] has proven he understands and values community-focused conservation. He has a passion for and awareness of the importance of conservation to rural communities and we’re confident he will bring this to his work as Deputy Secretary. We also know that he will support Secretary Haaland in the Interior Department’s ongoing and meaningful effort to engage Tribes, rural communities, grassroots conservation organizations, and other stakeholders in how our public lands should be managed. Statement by Brian Sybert, Conservation Lands Foundation | Read More >>
On April 13, 2018, Bill Doelle moderated “Bears Ears and the Future of Our National Monuments,” a panel discussion with Tommy Beaudreau, Josh Ewing, Willie Grayeyes, and Octavius Seowtewa, hosted by Johns Hopkins Cultural Heritage Management Program. Watch Here >>
Commentary: Restore the ‘Science Monument’
Why focus on science and research at Grand Staircase? We do science and research to better understand and inform our actions, like on-the-ground management. And research, both basic and applied, helps contribute to knowledge in all of the fields for which Grand Staircase was established: geology, paleontology, archaeology, history, and ecology. Other aspects of research, like having reference areas, doing long-term monitoring, and conducting relevant analysis, all contribute solid evidence for making land-management decisions. Carolyn Z. Shelton in Advocate Magazine (Grand Canyon Trust) | Read More >>
Essay: Why the Camp Grant Massacre Matters Today
That massacre unfolded 150 years ago today. It is nearly forgotten as a collective memory—rarely memorialized and barely known. Yet, the massacre’s aftereffects are entirely present. Because of this violence, Pinal and Aravaipa people fled their homeland and retreated to lands later designated as the San Carlos Apache Reservation. A vital piece of their historic territory is now threatened by the proposed development of a gigantic copper mine. Chip Colwell at SAPIENS | Read More >>
Video: The Importance of the Confluence
Proposed dams near the Little Colorado River would destroy areas sacred to Native peoples and threaten the habitat of the already endangered humpback chub. Fly over the Little Colorado River with EcoFlight as Lyle Balenquah—archaeologist, river and hiking guide, and member of the Hopi Tribe—and William LongReed—citizen of the Navajo Nation Bodaway/Gap Chapter—explain why this is the wrong place to build a dam. Grand Canyon Trust and EcoFlight | Watch Now >>
Video: Rescuing the Planet: A Conversation with Tony Hiss, Valerie Courtois, and Brenda Barrett
The Network for Landscape Conservation was pleased to host award-winning author and veteran New Yorker contributor Tony Hiss for a conversation about his latest and just-published book, Rescuing the Planet: Protecting Half the Land to Heal the Earth. Tony was joined in the discussion as well by Valerie Courtois, Director of Canada’s Indigenous Leadership Initiative, whose work is featured in the book, and Brenda Barrett, editor and founder of the Living Landscape Observer and member of the Network’s Coordinating Committee. Network for Landscape Conservation | Watch Now >>
Podcast: The First Migrations
In this episode, we’re talking about how the Ancestral Pueblo people came to be in the Southwest, and how Indigenous and European ways of learning and knowing about the past can complement each other. Mesa Verde Voices | Listen Now >>
Now Available in Paperback: Connected Communities
Connected Communities: Networks, Identity, and Social Change in the Ancient Cibola World, by Matthew A. Peeples. University of Arizona Press, 2018. Learn More >>
May 6 Webinar: Chimney Rock as a Landscape of Interaction on the Chacoan Frontier
Dr. Michelle I. Turner will discuss “Chimney Rock as a Landscape of Interaction on the Chacoan Frontier.” Archaeological theory increasingly recognizes the surprisingly complex interactions that characterize frontier communities, as people with differing worldviews adapt and negotiate, weaving together new ways of being. Drawing on such theory as well as landscape archaeology, the presentation will explore how the archaeological evidence and the natural landscape of Chimney Rock can help us to understand its community history and its relationships to Chaco Canyon. Chimney Rock Interpretive Association | More Information and Zoom Registration >>
REMINDER: May 6 Webinar: Sophisticated Rebels
“Sophisticated Rebels: Insurgent Archaeologies in the American Southwest” with Dr. Lewis Borck. For this talk, Dr. Borck will discuss the Gallina region and the Salado phenomenon of the Indigenous period of the North American Southwest to understand issues of violence as well as resistance to the increasingly hierarchical religious and political situations arising in both the northern and southern Southwest. Crow Canyon Archaeological Center | More Information and Zoom Registration >>
May 12 Webinar: The Crisis Campus: The U of U after WWII
It’s no overstatement to say that, in the years immediately following World War II, the University of Utah was in a state of crisis. With enrollment growth off the charts, university administrators scrambled to find new space for classes and offices and research. “The U’s Critical Years” looks at this extraordinary period in which their resourcefulness—and a fortuitous opportunity—resolved the crisis and laid the foundation for an entirely new campus. Utah State History | More Information and Zoom Registration >>
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