Author Archive

Boats to Trenches

On Board Ship
Tuesday, May 9th, 2017

Adam Sezate, University of Arizona and 2016 Preservation Archaeology Field School alumnus (May 9, 2017)—What does a person with a B.S. in History from the United States Naval Academy do after eight years in the U.S. fleet? During the two years before I turned in my uniform, I asked myself this question every day. The […]

Filed Under: Preservation Archaeology Blog

Protecting Native Rock Art: Be a Good Guest!

Shield Petroglyph with Bullet Holes
Friday, March 3rd, 2017

Kirk Astroth, Archaeology Southwest Member and Volunteer (March 3, 2017)—For the past 7 weeks, a team of us (Jaye Smith, Carl Evertsbusch, Fran Maiuri, Lance Trask, and I) have been working under the guidance of Aaron Wright to document the 594 boulders at the Painted Rock Petroglyph Site. I have found the work invigorating, the […]

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Shade, Cultures, and Foxes

Improvised Shade at Painted Rocks
Friday, February 17th, 2017

Carl Evertsbusch, Archaeology Southwest member and volunteer (February 17, 2017)—Gripping a pole lashed to one end of an 8×10 piece of dark plastic, I drift off into scenes of kneeling in dirt making earthshaking archaeological discoveries. With no warning a breeze hits our homemade contraption and threatens to launch my shade mate Jaye Smith (read […]

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Jaye Smith at Painted Rocks
Thursday, February 16th, 2017

Jaye Smith, Archaeology Southwest member and volunteer (February 16, 2016)—Volunteerism—I have thought about this word and its true meaning many times over the past 4 years, and when I originally decided to devote my remaining time on this magnificent planet to volunteer full time in the archaeological sciences. defines volunteerism as “the policy or […]

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Documenting Painted Rock Petroglyph Site

Orange Archaeologist Vest
Tuesday, February 14th, 2017

Fran Maiuri, Archaeology Southwest member and volunteer (February 14, 2017)—We’re in the middle of over 500 boulders with petroglyphs on them and we’re wearing bright orange vests that say ARCHAEOLOGIST. Five of us—Kirk Astroth, Carl Evertsbusch, Jaye Smith, and Lance Trask—are volunteering for Archaeologist Southwest, recording the Painted Rock Petroglyph site. This site is managed […]

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Celebrating a Mammoth Dust-Up in Bluff

Bluff Mammoth of Winter
Tuesday, December 20th, 2016

R. E. Burrillo, University of Utah San Juan County is no stranger to controversy. A divisive and tragic bust of archaeological looters took place in Blanding between 2007 and 2009. In 2014, a group of fed-up locals followed a county commissioner on an illegal “protest ride” through a popular canyon east of Blanding and Monticello that may or […]

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Disappointing Discoveries

Vandalized Petroglyph Panel
Friday, December 16th, 2016

Aaron Wright, Preservation Archaeologist (December 16, 2016)—Some of the most exciting dimensions of archaeological work are the instances of discovery—identifying new sites on survey; unearthing features at the bottom of an excavation unit; finding interesting artifacts in the screen; peering at microfossils, use-wear on artifacts, and pottery temper under a microscope; gaining new insights from […]

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Learning the Secrets

Pinto Polychrome
Thursday, November 3rd, 2016

Andy Ward, Potter and New Media Consultant (October 27, 2016)—Yesterday afternoon I drove out onto the Willcox Playa, where I dug down about a foot deep and found a rich layer of greenish clay, and now that clay is soaking in a bucket on my back porch. Over the last couple of weeks I have […]

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Notes from a Field Season at Aztec North

Aztec West
Monday, October 24th, 2016

Michelle Turner, PhD Student, Binghamton University Department of Anthropology (October 24, 2016)—The first time I heard about Aztec North was in the summer of 2013. I was a field intern at Crow Canyon, having just finished my first year of graduate school. One day, Shanna Diederichs took us all on a field trip to Aztec […]

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Recapping Stewardship Day 2016 in Utah’s Nine Mile Canyon

Excited for Stewardship Day
Tuesday, October 18th, 2016

R. E. Burrillo and Jamie Clark Stott, Project Discovery (October 18, 2016)—Imagine a hunting party on the prehistoric Great Plains. Imagine tense muscles, clenched jaws, fierce and determined eyes. Imagine hearts pounding. A signal is given, arms swing, voices rise in an undulating chorus of battle cries as warriors unleash a volley of missiles at […]

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Decisions in Clay

Mary Ownby Pot
Friday, October 14th, 2016

As International Archaeology Day (October 15, 2016) approaches, we’re celebrating by sharing posts about what we’re working on now—the daily work of archaeology. Today, we have a guest post from Mary, our colleague at Desert Archaeology, Inc. Mary Ownby, Research Petrographer, Desert Archaeology, Inc. (October 14, 2016)—As a newbie poster to Archaeology Southwest’s Preservation Archaeology blog, I should […]

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Aaron Wright at Painted Rocks.
Wednesday, October 12th, 2016

As International Archaeology Day (October 15, 2016) approaches, we’re celebrating by sharing posts about what we’re working on now—the daily work of archaeology. Aaron Wright, Preservation Archaeologist (October 12, 2016)—What does the day-to-day life of an archaeologist look like? I can’t speak for all archaeologists everywhere because there are many of us working on very […]

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Bears Ears and the Issue of Ownership

El Malpais Homestead
Tuesday, September 27th, 2016

This post was originally published on September 23, 2016, on the Binghamton University MAPA blog, Re-posted courtesy of the author and with the original blog’s permissions. Kellam Throgmorton, PhD Candidate, SUNY Binghamton University (September 23, 2016)—Howdy! This week I return to our “regularly scheduled programming” and discuss the issue of ownership in relation to archaeology and public […]

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Piecing History Back Together: A Lesson from the Past about the Future of the Bears Ears

Ground Stone Tool
Monday, September 12th, 2016

Ben Bellorado, Archaeologist (September 13, 2016)—Cultural affiliation studies are particularly important tools that Native peoples, anthropologists, and archaeologists use to demonstrate tangible links between people of the ancient past and contemporary societies. These studies are especially significant in the politically charged events presently surrounding the push to designate a national monument around the Bears Ears […]

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Nine Mile Canyon Stewardship Day 2016

Learning about Fremont Rock Art
Monday, August 15th, 2016

Jamie Clark Stott, Program Archaeologist, Project Discovery, Utah (August 15, 2016)—On Saturday, September 17, 2016, Project Discovery will host its third annual Stewardship Day (opens as a PDF) in Nine Mile Canyon, Utah. Project Discovery is a nonprofit education program birthed by education specialist Margie Nash. The program operates on a series of grants and […]

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Angel’s Rest and a World of Unknowns in Southeast Utah

Angel Pictograph
Thursday, July 14th, 2016

Guest post by R. E. Burrillo, Archaeologist: Manti-La Sal National Forest, Moab-Monticello District, UT (July 14, 2016)—This Saturday, July 16, Interior Secretary Sally Jewell and an accompanying cabal of Washington D.C. glitterati will be in Bluff, Utah, to hear public comments about the proposed Bears Ears National Monument. They are expecting—and more or less ready […]

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It’s Complex

Chacoan Window
Wednesday, July 13th, 2016

Daniel Agudelo, University of Michigan (Posted July 13, 2016)—On Saturday June 18 and Sunday June 19 we had the awesome pleasure of visiting Chaco Canyon and learning about Chacoan culture. Getting to Chaco was a trip in itself—over 10 miles of unpaved, hilly, and bumpy roads! I am so glad that this location as well […]

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The Durability of an Ancient Technology

On Survey
Wednesday, July 13th, 2016

Alyssa Kyper, Eastern New Mexico University (Posted on July 13, 2016)—Today was an excellent day on survey with Evan, Karen, and Jon. We spent the cool, crisp morning showing Karen an array of check dams and terraces on a bench above the Gila River we had surveyed earlier in the season, double-checking the area to […]

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A Room Revealed

Mapping Manos
Tuesday, July 12th, 2016

Stacy L. Ryan, Teaching Assistant, Preservation Archaeology Field School (July 12, 2016)—Field school provides an opportunity to spend weeks getting to the bottom of a feature, and interpretations of what we encounter along the way can shift during the process. We proceed with patience and the desire to learn more about how people lived at […]

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Chasing the Past

Field School Students
Tuesday, July 12th, 2016

Lindsay Romo, Cochise College (June 11, 2016)—Advancing knowledge of past people’s lives, beliefs, and practices for future research is one of Preservation Archaeology’s main goals. Leaving parts of the past for future excavations ameliorates the process of understanding what really took place within a site. We only have so much knowledge at this present time, […]

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Antelope Creek Obsidian

Bag of Obsidian
Monday, July 11th, 2016

Kaitlyn Cometa, University of Delaware (July 12, 2016)—What is the first thing you think of when you hear someone refer to the obsidian at a specific source as “bomb” obsidian? Probably that you don’t want to be near it when it blows up. I however, was drawn to the idea of the “bomb” obsidian and […]

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The Nature of Archaeology

El Morro National Monument
Thursday, July 7th, 2016

Lara Fields, Bryn Mawr College (July 7, 2016)—Since flying into Tucson, the Southwestern landscape has kept me in awe. From the dark orange expanse of the Sonoran desert to the tumbling grasslands of the Gila valley, I continue to be enthralled by a seemingly endless expanse of wilderness. Looking more closely, however, I begin to […]

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Investigating Kill Holes

Pottery Kill Hole
Tuesday, July 5th, 2016

Carolyn Barton, University of South Florida (July 4, 2016)—Nearly every budding archaeologist looks for a research area that captivates them; some immediately know what they want to specialize in. For me, that was far from the reality when I came to this field school. Every aspect of archaeology seemed to fascinate me, making me want […]

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Community Outreach in Archaeology

Karen Gives Site Tours
Sunday, July 3rd, 2016

Peter Babala, Santa Rosa Junior College (July 3, 2016)—A huge part of what initially attracted me to the field of archaeology was the sense of connection I get when I learn little more about the places I have lived and where the roots of my ancestries lie. It is a gift to have been given […]

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On Origins and Homecomings

Friday, July 1st, 2016

Katelyn (Katie) Jacobson, University of California at Santa Cruz (July 1, 2016)—Listening to an origin story is a commitment. Migrations, war, a fall, an exodus, generations, exile, and a homecoming; crawling out of the sludge took 3.2 million years and if you want to stand out in the desert and tell someone how it went, […]

Filed Under: Preservation Archaeology Blog