(April 28, 2023)—In late March, some of our Archaeology Southwest staff, volunteers, and seven of last year’s Preservation Archaeology Field School students traveled to Portland, Oregon for the Society for American Archaeology (SAA) annual meeting. It was great to hear about new research, get updates on some ongoing research projects I’ve been following, and visit with old friends and colleagues.
One of the best parts of these meetings always catching up with some of our former field school students. This year’s poster session on Mogollon, Mimbres, and Salado archaeology in southwestern New Mexico included 2022 field school alumni Emily Barrick, Jorge Barceló, Jonah Bullen, Aleesha Clevenger, Totsoni DeLuna, Charles Hemphill, and Ian Youth. The session also included some great colleagues at other institutions who work in this region. It’s great to get a bunch of us all together in one place to talk about our work! We’re happy to share the posters from this session with you here (click to go to posters).
I also got to see some students from previous years at the meetings. Ashley Huntley and Taylor Picard (both class of 2017) and Matt Steber (class of 2018) are enjoying careers at CRM companies in Ohio, California, and Arizona, respectively. Jonathan Alperstein (class of 2018) is earning his PhD at Dartmouth after a few years in CRM, and shared a great story about how he used the tape-and-compass mapping skills we forced our field school students to learn and saved the field day when his crew’s GPS equipment wasn’t working. Old-school methods for the win!
I really enjoyed getting to be a part of two paper sessions this year. One session celebrated Crow Canyon Archaeological Center’s 40th anniversary with papers on some long-running and newer projects covering a wide variety of research, education, and collaborations with American Indian tribal members. Jonathan Driver and I were happy to discuss our work on sustainability and hunting in the Four Corners area, and I got to hear about the results of some great colleagues’ research in that region. I also presented a paper in a session on isotopes and ancient animal DNA studies in the Southwest, and had a great time nerding out with colleagues working on some of the same ideas and challenges I’ve been thinking about on a project with Jeffery Ferguson I’ve written about a few times on this blog. I’m looking forward to updating Preservation Archaeology blog readers on this project as well, and have a post in progress to go up as soon as our next journal article comes out.
Thank you to the National Science Foundation (REU-1851763), the UA Foundation, and Archaeology Southwest members and donors for supporting the Preservation Archaeology Field School, including support for undergraduates who attended the SAA meetings this year. Funding undergraduate research ensures that the next generation of archaeologists gets the field and research experience they need to keep advancing in our field.
2022 field school students Emily Barrick, Jorge Barceló, Jonah Bullen, Aleesha Clevenger, Totsoni DeLuna, Charles Hemphill, and Ian Youth with their meeting posters.