Author Archive

Facts, Biases, and How We Sift through Them

Screen Vs Blower
Friday, January 27th, 2017

Karen Gust Schollmeyer, Preservation Archaeologist (January 27, 2016)—As you know if you read this blog often, archaeologists instinctively draw on our training in anthropology and our studies of the past when we’re trying to understand the complexity of today’s world. To my surprise, an episode in the development of anthropological theory I struggled with as […]



Filed Under: Preservation Archaeology Blog

The Power of Symbols

Flags in Civil Rights March
Monday, November 14th, 2016

Karen Gust Schollmeyer, Preservation Archaeologist (November 14, 2016)—As an anthropologist, I think about the power of symbols, and their power to unite or divide. When I taught traditional classroom anthropology courses, this was one of the key concepts we discussed. As a young teaching assistant for Peggy Nelson (a professor in the Barrett Honors College […]



Filed Under: Preservation Archaeology Blog

Salad Spinners, Inductively Coupled Plasma Mass Spectrometers, and Bones

A Plant Dehydrator
Friday, October 28th, 2016

Karen Gust Schollmeyer, Preservation Archaeologist (October 28, 2016)—October introduced me to an unexpected new archaeological research tool: the salad spinner. I’ve just returned from a very busy two weeks in southwest Colorado, where archaeological chemistry expert Jeff Ferguson and I completed the second phase of field and museum work for our project using animal bone […]



Filed Under: Preservation Archaeology Blog

Indiana Jones and the Artiodactyl-Sized Long Bone Shaft Fragment

Artiodactyl-Sized Long Bone Shaft Fragment
Monday, October 3rd, 2016

As International Archaeology Day (October 15, 2016) approaches, we’ll celebrate by sharing posts about what we’re working on now—the daily work of archaeology. Please don’t hesitate to comment or ask questions! Karen Gust Schollmeyer, Preservation Archaeologist (October 3, 2016)—It’s a familiar question for every archaeologist: “What’s the coolest thing you’ve ever found?” I like to think I […]



Filed Under: Preservation Archaeology Blog

Kickoff of Our 2016 Field School Blog Series

2016 Field School Crew
Tuesday, June 7th, 2016

Karen Gust Schollmeyer, Preservation Archaeologist (June 7, 2016)—The 2016 field season brings several exciting changes for the Preservation Archaeology Field School. One of the biggest changes for us is a new excavation site. We finished our fieldwork at the Cliff phase (A.D. 1300–1450+) Dinwiddie site last summer, and have moved a few miles northeast to […]



Filed Under: Preservation Archaeology Blog

The Students Are Coming!

Map of Field School Students
Thursday, April 28th, 2016

Karen Gust Schollmeyer, Preservation Archaeologist (April 28, 2016)—Our 2016 Preservation Archaeology Field School is only a month away! For me, late April brings a list of quirky archaeological tasks, such as ordering thousands of very specific plastic bags for artifact curation and researching portable toilet companies. Jeff Clark and I recently took a brief break […]



Filed Under: Preservation Archaeology Blog

Bunny Innominates

Jackrabbit Bone Tool
Wednesday, March 30th, 2016

Karen Gust Schollmeyer, Preservation Archaeologist (March 30, 2016)—I recently finished analyzing animal bone from the Black Mountain site outside Deming, New Mexico, where Dr. Katy Putsavage (Eastern New Mexico University) led excavations from 2010–2012. One of the last bags I analyzed contained an interesting item: a jackrabbit hip-bone (or innominate) with the very end cut […]



Filed Under: Preservation Archaeology Blog

Where Are They Now? Part 2

Alexandra Norwood
Wednesday, March 2nd, 2016

Karen Gust Schollmeyer, Preservation Archaeologist (March 1, 2016)—This is the second of two posts checking in with a few of our recent field school alumni to see what they’re up to now. Although we’ve been focusing on anthropological career paths in this series, I’ve also enjoyed watching many former students go on to apply their […]



Filed Under: Preservation Archaeology Blog

Rewarding Award

2015 Field School
Thursday, February 25th, 2016

Karen Gust Schollmeyer, Preservation Archaeologist (February 25, 2016)—Jeff Clark and I recently received the happy news that our Upper Gila Preservation Archaeology Field School has received three years of student funding from the National Science Foundation’s (NSF) Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) program (Award 1560465). REU programs are a little different from many NSF grants […]



Filed Under: Preservation Archaeology Blog

Where Are They Now? Part 1

Maxwell Forton
Thursday, February 18th, 2016

Karen Gust Schollmeyer, Preservation Archaeologist (February 18, 2016)—This summer’s field school in the Upper Gila area of southwest New Mexico will mark the fifth year of our successful partnership with the University of Arizona (UA) to offer archaeological field training as a college-level course through the UA School of Anthropology. As applications from this year’s […]



Filed Under: Preservation Archaeology Blog

A Refugee Story, A.D. 1275

Castle Rock Pueblo
Thursday, November 19th, 2015

Karen Gust Schollmeyer, Preservation Archaeologist (November 19, 2015)—I’m going to tell a story—as close to a true story as I can, but a story nonetheless. Seven hundred and forty years ago, groups of people fled their homes, seeking escape from political turmoil and economic hardships. A drought had stirred unrest in the already-troubled region. Old […]



Filed Under: Featured, Preservation Archaeology Blog

Other Archaeologists

Karen in Ethiopia
Sunday, October 11th, 2015

Between now and October 17, 2015, Archaeology Southwest is participating in the Archaeological Institute of America’s celebration of International Archaeology Day (10/17/15) by sharing blog posts about why—or how—we became archaeologists. We hope you enjoy this very personal look at our staff members and the experiences that changed their lives. Today we feature Preservation Archaeologist […]



Filed Under: Preservation Archaeology Blog

Gopher Jaws and the Past

Karen Measuring Specimen
Friday, October 2nd, 2015

Karen Gust Schollmeyer, Preservation Archaeologist (October 2, 2015)—I spent this week in beautiful southwestern Colorado working on the first phase of a new research project using animal bone chemistry to examine how people’s access to food animals changed over time in the Mesa Verde area. I wrote about this project on our blog a few […]



Filed Under: Preservation Archaeology Blog

Wish Granted

Mimbres Bowl - Bighorn Sheep Hunter
Monday, August 31st, 2015

Karen Gust Schollmeyer, Preservation Archaeologist My colleague Mike Diehl and I recently heard the good news that we’ve received a National Science Foundation grant (BCS-1524079). When I told my family about it at dinner that night, my youngest daughter asked what a “grant” was. I told her that when scientists want to study something we […]



Filed Under: Preservation Archaeology Blog

What We’re Doing at the 2015 Field School

Measuring Adobe Room
Thursday, June 18th, 2015

Karen Gust Schollmeyer, Preservation Archaeologist As you can tell if you’re following Archaeology Southwest on Facebook, our 2015 field season is off and running! This year, as in the past, students are rotating through experiences in excavation, archaeological survey, field laboratory analysis, and experimental archaeology. Our twelve undergraduates and two graduate students have come together […]



Filed Under: Preservation Archaeology Blog

How Far Did They Carry Those Deer? And Where Did All Those Turkeys Come from?

Deer Running Across Path
Tuesday, April 28th, 2015

Karen Gust Schollmeyer, Preservation Archaeologist April 28, 2015—I recently received the good news that a new project we’re starting here at Archaeology Southwest has been funded by the National Science Foundation (BCS-1460385). I’ll be working with Jeffrey Ferguson, an archaeological chemistry expert from the Archaeometry Laboratory at the University of Missouri Research Reactor, who has […]



Filed Under: Preservation Archaeology Blog

What Most of Us Are Doing This Week: Ridiculously Long Titles Edition

SAA Presentation Prep
Wednesday, April 15th, 2015

Karen Gust Schollmeyer, Preservation Archaeologist Many of us here at Archaeology Southwest will be spending part of this week in San Francisco, California, at the Society for American Archaeology Annual Meeting. Every year, thousands of archaeologists flock to a different North American city to overwhelm local hotels, convention centers, ethnic restaurants, and cheap bars, where […]



Filed Under: Preservation Archaeology Blog

Shoot, Grind, Chop, and Burn!

Silver City Hands-On Crowd
Wednesday, March 4th, 2015

By Karen Schollmeyer and Allen Denoyer One of the most exciting components of Archaeology Southwest’s growing Hands-On Archaeology program is the inclusion of public activities specifically geared toward residents of southwest New Mexico’s Upper Gila area. This area is the focus of our Preservation Archaeology Field School, and some of our research and preservation projects […]



Filed Under: Preservation Archaeology Blog

Learning from Broken Bunny Bones

Checking Specimen Identifications
Tuesday, February 24th, 2015

Karen Gust Schollmeyer, Preservation Archaeologist A few years ago, when I was a graduate student, a bright young undergraduate came into the lab to ask about volunteering to help with animal bone analysis, or zooarchaeology. I will never forget the look of horror on his face when I poured a bag of broken animal bones […]



Filed Under: Preservation Archaeology Blog

What I’m Doing This Week: Karen Schollmeyer

Faunal Remains
Tuesday, February 3rd, 2015

Karen Schollmeyer, Preservation Archaeologist   This week, I am finishing up faunal analysis (animal remains) from Jakob Sedig’s excavations at Woodrow Ruin in the Upper Gila area. He had a field project there in 2012–2013 for his dissertation work. It’s interesting because it’s just a few miles from our field school at Dinwiddie, but from […]



Filed Under: Preservation Archaeology Blog

Rooms of Our Own

Lab Space
Friday, September 26th, 2014

Karen Schollmeyer, Preservation Archaeologist   As one of the newest Archaeology Southwest staff members, I still marvel at how peaceful, inviting, and singular our workplace is. I’ve been spending a lot of time in the Archaeology Southwest library lately, researching older excavations in the Upper Gila area. Before starting this project, I hadn’t realized the […]



Filed Under: Preservation Archaeology Blog

Celebrating World Atlatl Day

Atlatl Team
Tuesday, June 10th, 2014

Allen Denoyer and Karen Schollmeyer, Preservation Archaeologists The end of our students’ first full week in camp coincided with World Atlatl Day (June 7). This summer, field school students are rotating through experiences in experimental archaeology, as well as the more traditional excavation and survey course components. They have been working hard making their own […]



Filed Under: Preservation Archaeology Blog

Teaching and Research at the 2014 Preservation Archaeology Field School

Danielle and Kaelyn
Tuesday, June 3rd, 2014

Karen Schollmeyer, Preservation Archaeologist   Our 2014 Preservation Archaeology Field School in the Upper Gila area has just begun, and we are off to a great start. Over the coming weeks, our students and staff will be writing blog posts summarizing some of our research and their learning experiences here in Mule Creek, New Mexico. […]



Filed Under: Preservation Archaeology Blog