This note is divided into two parts: an important Part 1 and a self-indulgent Part 2.
Part 1. Last night, Archaeology Southwest initiated season 16 of its Archaeology Café series. My thanks to Director of Outreach, Sara Anderson, who took over hosting the Café, which allowed me to log in from home. And special thanks to Dr. Nicole Mathwich of San Diego State University, who shared her research on early animal husbandry at the Spanish mission of Guevavi in the U.S.–Mexico border region.
I visited the Guevavi field school a decade ago, so I knew something of the context for this talk. Dr. Mathwich truly elevated discussion of butchered animal bone. Most history and archaeology at Spanish missions tends to focus on the missionaries, the miners, the military—the extractive elements of the colonial enterprise. Dr. Mathwich’s talk led us to a way of perceiving the Indigenous transformation embedded in the archaeological data. She helped us see how introduced animals became “native traditional resources.” I urge you to watch the forthcoming video on our YouTube channel if you missed it last night. We’ll link to that in next week’s edition.
And there are seven more high quality presentations coming up every month that will address “Traditional Foods and Foodways.” Please plan to join us.
Part 2. A week ago, as Kate and I were putting together PAT, I saw her headline noting that our 16th Café season was about to launch. That spurred me to dig out my notes from last season—which I consistently introduced as our 16th season. Oops!
The next day, several of us carefully checked the math. I now state with confidence that yesterday really was the start of season 16. I’ve made more consequential errors in my life, but confessing to this one makes me feel better.
Until next week,
President & CEO, Archaeology Southwest
cyberSW and SKOPE Now Work Together
Two web applications that are invaluable for resource management and research in the Southwest US, cyberSW and SKOPE, are now interoperable. cyberSW is an online database that integrates Southwest US settlement and artifactual data from more than 25,000 archaeological sites. SKOPE provides painless access to high spatial and temporal resolution reconstructions of precipitation and temperature over the last 2,000 years for the 4 Corners states. Keith Kintigh and the Coalition for Archaeological Synthesis | Read more »
Indigenous Ranger Intern Program Elevates Tribal Voices
On a sunny Wednesday morning, 40 tourists visited Balcony House, one of Mesa Verde’s ancient Puebloan cliff dwellings. Visitors shimmed through tiny openings in sandstone architecture and climbed up a forty-foot ladder. The tour guide was Jordan Fragua, a 21-year-old Pueblo of Picaris and Ohkay Owingeh man. His job allows him to combine park interpretation, public speaking, and his cultural upbringing. “It’s really rewarding. Different rangers will say, ‘This is a sacred spot,’ and they mean it in good faith, but for me, it is an actual sacred site,” said Fragua. Clark Adomaitis for KSJD | Read more or listen now »
Analysis: Near-Universal support for BLM’s Proposed Rule
A new statistical analysis of more than 260,000 public comments finds universal support for the Bureau of Land Management’s proposed rule updating the regulations that govern oil and gas leasing on American public lands. The Center for Western Priorities performed a sentiment analysis on a random sample of 10,000 public comments submitted to regulations.gov as of Monday, September 25th, after the close of a 60-day comment period. Of the 261,000 comments submitted to the website, more than 130,000 were available for download. CWP’s analysis found more than 99 percent of the comments encouraged the Interior Department to adopt the Oil and Gas Rule largely as written. Center for Western Priorities | Read more »
Penn Will Cease Exhibiting Most Human Remains
The Penn Museum is significantly changing how it displays and handles human remains. In an updated policy, the museum has announced that it will no longer display “exposed” human remains. Only wrapped remains such as mummies, or enclosed remains like coffins will be considered for display. The museum will also bolster its efforts to repatriate human remains beyond the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act (NAGPRA), adding five new staff roles responsible for researching human remains and ensuring their repatriation. … In considering what the museum will display, Penn will prioritize “human dignity over public access,” according to the policy. Rosa Cartagena in the Philadelphia Inquirer | Read more »
Blog: Bug Bling!
Seeing these iridescent green beauties reminded me of an article I’d recently read by Matt Stirn about Michael Terlep and colleagues’ research on two necklaces that had been found in rock shelters in Bears Ears National Monument and are currently in the collections of Edge of the Cedars State Park Museum. Those were made of parts of similar beetles, apparently Green June beetles (Cotinis nidita). I’m not aware of any such necklaces known from southern Arizona, but people may have made and worn them here, too—we just don’t have as many rock shelters in which they could have been preserved. When I read the article, it had not really registered that the beads were made of the hind legs of similar beetles. But, seeing hordes of them at the garden, it clicked (pun intended). Well, you know me—I had to give it a go and try to replicate beetle-leg bling! Allen Denoyer for the Preservation Archaeology blog (Archaeology Southwest) | Read more »
Publication Announcement: Historical Archaeology’s Response to the Climate Crisis
Miller, S.E., Wright, J.P. Introduction: Archaeology of the Anthropocene: Historical Archaeology’s Response to the Climate Crisis. Hist Arch (2023). Read now »
Position Announcement: Event Coordinator
Mission Garden seeks an event planner to coordinate and execute all of Mission Garden’s public and private events, including school field trips, and to manage our onsite Commercial Kitchen. We seek a team member with experience in a relevant professional capacity who is enthusiastic about supporting Mission Garden. The candidate must be a flexible self-starter, embody a service-oriented mindset, and be willing to jump in whenever necessary. The Event Coordinator will work with lead staff to manage the planning and logistics for all the Garden’s public events including 8–10 festivals a year and many smaller events. Mission Garden (Friends of Tucson’s Birthplace) | Learn more »
October Subscription Lectures (Santa Fe NM)
Oct. 9, Ben Reeder, Colorado River: Beyond Resource; Oct. 16, Laura Marshall Clark (Muscogee), Clans, Chiefs, and Kin: A Good Red Road on the Emerald Isle; Oct. 23, Maxine McBrinn, Linda Cordell and the Future of Southwest Archaeology; Oct. 30, John Ninneman, Skywatchers of the Ancient Southwest. Southwest Seminars | Learn more »
REMINDER: Oct. 5 Online Event: Creating Community during the Basketmaker III Period in Southwest Colorado
With Shanna Diederichs and Kari Schleher. The central Mesa Verde region of southwest Colorado was a new frontier for Ancestral Pueblo farmers during the Basketmaker III period (A.D. 500–750). The Crow Canyon Archaeological Center investigated a Basketmaker III settlement on Indian Camp Ranch from 2011–2018. The project found a settlement made up of culturally diverse immigrants with architectural and pottery production practices from various traditions across the Southwest. Public gatherings in the settlement’s great kiva transformed this diverse group into an integrated community. As the community grew, descendants of the original settlers found themselves with managerial control of the great kiva and many production practices, such as pottery manufacture and design. This development appears to have contributed to the community’s stability and economic viability and likely influenced Ancestral Pueblo social practices in the central Mesa Verde region for centuries. Crow Canyon Archaeological Center | Learn more and register (free) »
Oct. 7 In-Person Event (Dragoon AZ): Texas Canyon Trails System Grand Opening
Discover Amerind’s Nature Preserve! Join us for a celebration of Amerind’s newest attraction-the Texas Canyon Nature Preserve Trails. With 8 miles of new self-guided walking trails, you can experience the iconic and captivating landscape of Texas Canyon as never before. Guest speakers include Jesus Garcia (Mission Garden), Jefford Francisco (Tohono O’odham Nation Tribal Historic Preservation Office), and Lyn Loveless (Botanist). Amerind Museum | Learn more »
REMINDER: Oct. 9 In-Person Event (Phoenix AZ): Indigenous Peoples Day Fest
Cahokia PHX announced its second annual Indigenous Peoples’ Day Phx Fest to take place on Monday, October 9, 2023 at the Margaret T. Hance Park located at 67 W Culver Street. The Indigenous-led, Indigenous-owned art and entrepreneur space will expand festival activities to include an official Launch Party on Wednesday, October 4, at the Phoenix Art Museum and other signature events with valley partners the Heard Museum, and the Burton Barr Central Library. The Gila River Indian Community and Becker Boards join as title sponsors for this year’s celebration. In April of this year, Mayor Kate Gallego and the Phoenix City Council voted to designate the second Monday of October each year as a city holiday in observance of Indigenous Peoples’ Day. Organizers hope this year’s festival theme “Indigenize the Valley” will catch on to other metropolitan areas and increase the awareness of Indigenous contributions and ingenuity prior to Arizona’s statehood, since time immemorial. Cahokia PHX | Learn more »
Editors’ note: Come visit the Respect Great Bend/Save History/other partners and friends booth at this event!
Oct. 11 Online Event: Pilgrimage to Magdalena
With Bernard Siquieros, Regina L. Siquieros, and Seth Schermerhorn. This month our feature is a film, none-other than BCA’s own award-winning 30-minute video, “Pilgrimage to Magdalena.” We are incredibly fortunate to have three speakers on a panel (link to the film will be provided with your registration confirmation): a scholar on Southwestern indigenous traditions, and a husband & wife team who are both members of the Tohono O’odham Nation. All three have participated in the centuries-old pilgrimage to Magdalena. Border Community Alliance | Learn more and register (free) »
Oct. 12 In-Person Event (NY NY): Exploring Indigenous Ceramics: A Pueblo Community Panel
With Joseph Aguilar, Tara Gatewood, Russell Sanchez, Brian Vallo, and Kathleen Wall. Delve into the spirit of Pueblo pottery and hear from community leaders, curators, artists, and collaborators on The Met’s first-ever, community-curated Native American exhibition, Grounded in Clay: The Spirit of Pueblo Pottery, featuring more than 100 ancestral, modern, and contemporary clay works that foreground Pueblo voices and aesthetics. Get a personal glimpse into the artists’ processes and discover the significance of the visual and material languages embodied by artworks in the exhibition. Free, though advance registration is required. Please note: Space is limited; first come, first served. The Met | Learn more »
Remember to send us notice of upcoming webinars and Zoom lectures, tours and workshops, and anything else you’d like to share with the Friends. Thanks!