Christopher (Chris) Caseldine is a Preservation Archaeology Postdoc at Archaeology Southwest. Chris received a BAE in Secondary Education History and a BA, MA, and PhD in Anthropology from Arizona State University. Chris’s dissertation focused on the reconstruction of ancient irrigation systems in the lower Salt River Valley (Phoenix Basin, Arizona) to provide insight into the relationship between water availability and sociopolitical change among the Hohokam. Chris’s research interests include water management among traditional irrigation societies, large-scale sociopolitical and cultural transitions, geoarchaeology, relationships between the Hohokam and northwest Mexico, and the archaeology of the Phoenix and Tonto Basins.
Chris grew up in Mesa, Arizona, and attended high school not far from the Mesa Grande platform mound. Although deeply interested in history growing up, an undergraduate class focused on common-pool resources, including irrigation, sparked Chris’s interest in Hohokam irrigation. Chris’s experience in ASU Anthropology collections (Archaeological Research Institute, now the Center for Archaeology and Society Repository) provided him with the opportunity to work with archaeological collections from the Phoenix Basin and the large-scale Roosevelt projects in Tonto Basin. This time formed the foundation of his core research interests.
Chris has participated in archaeological projects in the Phoenix Basin, Perry Mesa (north of the Phoenix Basin), southern and eastern New Mexico, central Colorado, and just north of Mexico City.