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The thriving farmstead of one of Tucson’s oldest families stood northeast of I-10 and Congress.
EVENT: Archaeology of a Mexican Family: The Leóns of Tucson
DATE/TIME: Tuesday, November 3, 2009 at 6:00 pm.
LOCATION: Casa Vicente, 375 S. Stone Avenue, Tucson, AZ.
This Archaeology Café convened on Tuesday, November 3, 2009. We were joined by J. Homer Thiel, one of Tucson’s preeminent historical archaeologists and a project director with Desert Archaeology, Inc. Homer shared the story of the Leóns, a family whose roots in Tucson go back more than 200 years. Francisco Solano León and Ramona Elías de León were both born and raised in the Tucson Presidio. The remains of their farmstead, which dated from the mid-1840s to the 1920s, were discovered along the Santa Cruz River in 1998. To interpret the archaeological data they unearthed, Homer and his team drew from an unusually rich array of documentary and photographic evidence, as well as oral history interviews with Francisco and Ramona’s descendants. Indeed, the team could even link certain artifacts with specific family members.
ABOUT J. HOMER THIEL
Homer Thiel is one of Tucson’s best-known historical archaeologists, a prolific author, and an experienced lecturer. He has been a project director with Desert Archaeology, Inc., for many years.