Our Projects

We ask “big questions” about people’s lives in this region in the past. We protect places on the land. We advocate for the protection and interpretation of cultural landscapes.

Las Ventanas

The Las Ventanas (or Candelaria) great house lies about 112 km south of the Chacoan center at Pueblo Bonito, within the boundaries of the El Malpais National Monument. The great house comprises a two-story structure with perhaps 80 total rooms that was built during the Chacoan era from A.D. 1050–1...
completed
Research

Tucson Origins

Archaeology Southwest has a long-term commitment to the archaeology and history of our home community. In the 1990s, we conducted a series of small excavations to locate buried adobe walls of the Tucson Presidio. Beginning in 2000, we played a role in the Tucson Origins Project funded by Tucson’s ...
completed
Advocacy, Outreach, Research

In Search of the Coronado Trail

Launched in August 2004, the Coronado Project was an outreach and public education project that sought to determine the route of Francisco Vázquez de Coronado’s infamous expedition of 1540 from northern Mexico to the Pueblo of Zuni. Archaeology Southwest (then the Center for Desert Archaeology) a...
completed
Outreach, Research

Zuni Origins

When the Coronado Expedition entered the Southwest in 1540, they were pursuing reports of lost cities of gold. They ended up at the seven major pueblos that we now know as Zuni. Not quite cities, and totally lacking in gold, these settlements were a source of great disappointment to the Spaniards. T...
completed
Research

San Pedro Petrofacies Project

In the late 1990s, petrologist Beth Miksa began collecting and analyzing more than 240 sand samples from areas along the entire San Pedro River Valley in Arizona and Mexico. Her innovative petrofacies research using this data has played an important part in the Archaeology Southwest’s investigatio...
completed
Research

Surveying the Southern Tucson Basin

The Hohokam of the southern Arizona desert are best known for their creation and management of extensive canal networks. In recent years we’ve come to realize that other agricultural technologies also played critical roles in sustaining Hohokam populations. My work with Archaeology Southwest inves...
completed
Research

San Pedro Ethnohistory Project

In 2001, I began my Preservation Fellowship to investigate how an array of stakeholders uses, values, and interprets the archaeological landscape in Arizona’s San Pedro valley. Bridging the disciplines of ethnology, archaeology, and ethnohistory, my research sought to understand the place of histo...
completed
Advocacy, Outreach, Research, Site Protection

Safford Valley Project

This research by former Preservation Fellow Anna A. Neuzil examined archaeological data from the Safford and Aravaipa valleys in an effort to understand the social consequences of migrations to southeastern Arizona in the 13th through 15th centuries. For more on her recent publication of this resear...
completed
Research

Rock Art at South Mountain

Aaron’s manuscript titled “Religion on the Rocks: Rock Art, Ritual Practice, and Transformation of the Hohokam World” (forthcoming, University of Utah Press) has won the prestigious Don D. and Catherine S. Fowler Prize. The Fowlers made the award announcement on Friday, October 19, 2012, at th...
completed
Outreach, Research, Site Protection

National Heritage Areas

Archaeology Southwest participated in two national heritage area campaigns: the Little Colorado River valley and the Santa Cruz River valley. National Heritage Areas seek to preserve and celebrate America’s defining landscapes and diverse cultural traditions. National Heritage Areas (NHAs) are ...
completed
Advocacy

Salmon Pueblo and the Middle San Juan River Valley

From 2001 to 2014, Archaeology Southwest’s Preservation Archaeologist Paul Reed was based at Salmon Pueblo. His long-term collaborative research project examines the reach of the cultures centered at Chaco Canyon and Mesa Verde into the Middle San Juan Basin. It also seeks to understand what commu...
completed
Outreach, Research