Monday, December 31, 2007

More on NPS Move, Vandalism at San Xavier

Southwestern Archaeology Making the News - A Service of the Center for Desert Archaeology

- Moving National Park Service Employees in Santa Fe Causing Controversy: National Park Service employees and retirees are angry about a plan to move the agency's Santa Fe staff to a historical building on Old Santa Fe Trail. Placing too many employees in the building "is no less than vandalism," J.W. "Bill" Wade, chairman of the executive council of the Coalition of Retired National Park Service Employees, wrote to National Park Service Director Mary Bomar.

- Vandalism at San Xavier Shrine: Two long-standing religious statues that graced the grotto at Mission San Xavier del Bac were smashed last week by a man police found yelling on the hillside, a Tohono O'odham police spokesman said.

- Realtor and Paleontologists Join in Familiar Conflict over Development North of Las Vegas: Local real estate agent Sandy Croteau made a somewhat surprising pitch as she traipsed through a vacant, gravel-filled wash: She wants to spare the expanse from home developers. Trying to halt this city's growth may be a Sisyphean task, but Croteau, 60, is counting on help from some sun-worn mammoth bones. About 10,000 bison, camel and mammoth fossils have been unearthed in recent years in a nearly 13,000-acre ribbon of the Upper Las Vegas Wash just south of Desert National Wildlife Refuge. And with builders champing to get at the property, the federal Bureau of Land Management must figure out how much of the land to preserve. - Los Angeles Times

- Mesoamerican Find May Push Back Date for the Beginning of the Aztec Empire: Archeologists have discovered the ruins of an 800-year-old Aztec pyramid in the heart of the Mexican capital that could show the ancient city is at least a century older than previously thought.Mexican archeologists found the ruins, which are about 36 feet (11 metres) high, in the central Tlatelolco area, once a major religious and political centre for the Aztec elite.

The Center for Desert Archaeology wishes you a happy new year. We have some great things planned for archaeology on the internet in 2008!

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Rethinking Jared Diamond, SAA Responds to Time, Santa Fe NPS Questions

Southwestern Archaeology Making the News - A Service of the Center for Desert Archaeology

- Rethinking Jared Diamond: At the seminar, Dr. McAnany suggested that the very idea of societal collapse might be in the eye of the beholder. She was thinking of the Maya, whose stone ruins have become the Yucatan’s roadside attractions. But the descendants of the Maya live on. She recalled a field trip by local children to a site she was excavating in Belize: “This little girl looks up at me, and she has this beautiful little Maya face, and asks, ‘What happened to all the Maya? Why did they all die out?’” No one visits Stonehenge, she noted, and asks whatever happened to the English. - New York Times

- Society for American Archaeology Responds to Time Magazine's Stance on Antiquities Trade:

- Concern Grows Over Park Service Plans to Reorganize Regional Office in Santa Fe: The National Park Service plans to cut its staff in Santa Fe by a quarter, leave its leased building on the south end of town and consolidate its remaining 70 Santa Fe employees in its historic building on Old Santa Fe Trail. But the Park Service strongly disputes allegations by some Santa Fe employees and retirees that the federal agency will damage the building by putting too many employees there, that it is removing the building's valuable artifacts or that it plans to close Santa Fe operations altogether. - Santa Fe New Mexican

- Texas Students Learn About Archaeological Fieldwork (and Get Some Really Bad Career Advice): San Marcos students received an introduction to professional archaeology recently when they spent a morning walking a local archaeological site with professors at Texas State University-San Marcos. The students, fifth- and sixth-graders in the Hernandez Intermediate School Gifted and Talented Program, walked a site at Texas State's Freeman Ranch, near San Marcos, with Britt Bousman, Jon McGee and John Lohse of the Department of Anthropology.

- Surviving Lewis and Clarke: Native American tribes have suffered enormous losses of both territory and cultural heritage in the course of their dealings with the United States. A good example of this past is that of the Nez Perce Tribe, headquartered in Idaho, who relate their history and their cultural pride in Surviving Lewis & Clark: The Nimiipuu Story, the latest video feature on our nonprofit streaming-media Web site, The Archaeology Channel

Monday, December 24, 2007

Rock Art Vs Sprawl in Utah, Imapct of Arizona Ruling on Development, 2008 ICOMOS Meeting

Southwestern Archaeology Making the News - A Service of the Center for Desert Archaeology

- Rock Art vs. Urban Sprawl in Utah: An ancient 40-ton jungle gym of sorts, the massive burnt umber boulder anchors a neighborhood park and beckons suburban kids to clamber over its mysterious Anasazi etchings. And climb aboard they do, sometimes even attempting to scratch their own marks before the adults run them off, neighbors say. Archaeologists typically warn against even smudging natural skin oils on the chiseled drawings or the rock's natural mineral glaze so they won't slowly melt away.

- Settlement Against G. Johnson Seen as a Wake Up Call to Developers: Developers don't get to ignore the rules that protect Arizona's resources and heritage. That should be the bottom-line message from a $12 million state settlement with developer George H. Johnson, several of his companies and three contractors. The Wild West, no-holds-barred, rip-out-the-vegetation, throw-up-the-houses style of development has no place in modern Arizona.

- Travelogue - Visiting Betatikin: Located in a side canyon to the magnificent Tsegi Canyon, a deep gorge cut through this part of northern Arizona. The village is nestled in the blind end of the canyon perched above a grove of oak, juniper and aspen that fill its floor with brilliant foliage in the fall. Just beyond the grove, at the canyon's deep bottom, a small spring gurgles as it cascades down the rock-filled slot that it has cut through the layers of rock that make up the floor.

- Call for Papers - 16th General Assembly of the International Council on Monuments and Sites: Quebec, Canada, September 29 - October 4, 2008. This years theme focuses upon the spirit of place - between the intangible and the tangible. Participants are invited to submit papers for the symposium. All papers must fall under one of the four sub-themes mentioned below. Selected papers that cannot be presented orally can be presented in the form of posters (poster session). The Sub-themes include "Re-thinking the Spirit of Place," "The Threats to the Spirit of Place," "Safeguarding the Spirit of Place," and "Transmitting the Spirit of Place."

Friday, December 21, 2007

Developer Agrees to Major Fines in Blading Case, Emory Sekaquaptewa Passes

Southwestern Archaeology Making the News - A Service of the Center for Desert Archaeology

- Developer Agrees to Pay 7 Million Dollars for Illegally Grading Hohokam Sites: An Arizona developer and his company agreed to pay $7 million to the state for his role in the illegal blading of more than 200 acres of state trust land and the destruction of several Hohokam sites. In the deal announced Thursday, George H. Johnson and Johnson International admit no guilt for those events nor other allegations, including that they caused the deaths of 21 bighorn sheep by putting domestic goats on the land he intended to develop into a new city in southern Pinal County.

- Settlement in Johnson Case the Largest Environmental Damage Fine in Arizona History: The state will collect more than $12 million from the settlement of a 2005 lawsuit against land developer George B. Johnson, several of his companies, excavation contractor Jack McCall, 3F Contracting Inc. and Preston Well Drilling. The money will settle all claims in the case.

- Hopi Linguist and Anthropologist Emory Sekaquaptewa Passed Away Last Friday: Emory Sekaquaptewa, a Hopi educator, judge, artist and cultural treasure as well as a noted research anthropologist at The University of Arizona’s Bureau of Applied Research in Anthropology, died on Dec. 14. Although his birth was never recorded, he is believed to have been born in 1928 and celebrated his birthdays on Dec. 28.

- The Center for Desert Archaeology is currently undergoing a self-assessment and strategic planning process. The plans that result from this process will guide our efforts for the next three to five years. We need your input. Please help by taking our online survey. All answers are anonymous, and the survey should only take 5-10 minutes of
your time. Thank you! You will find the survey at:

- Anasazi Heritage Center Announces Winter Hours: Looking for something fun and free to do over the holidays? Have friends and relatives visiting? Now’s your chance! The Bureau of Land Management’s Anasazi Heritage Center located near Dolores, Colorado, is open for winter visitors from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. This year the Center will only be closed December 24th (Christmas Eve), December 25th (Christmas Day), and January 1st (New Year’s Day). Right now in the museum’s special gallery is the exhibit Stanton Englehart: Seasons on the Plateau which includes many never before seen paintings by this life long and nationally recognized painter of the Four Corners.

Monday, December 17, 2007

Michael Collins Purchases and Donates the Gault Site, More on the I-10 Bypass, Another Ancient Asteroid Impact Discovered

Southwestern Archaeology Making the News - A Service of the Center for Desert Archaeology

- University of Texas Professor Purchases the Gault Site for Preservation: A University of Texas professor who for five years has sought to procure an archaeological dig site north of Austin for his colleagues has finally closed the deal: by cashing out his personal savings. Michael Collins, associate researcher at the Texas Archeological Research Laboratory at UT's J.J. Pickle Research Campus, bought the 33-acre Gault site in southwestern Bell County and donated it to the Archaeological Conservancy. - The Statesman

- Opportunity for Public Comment on I-10 Bypass Opens Tomorrow Morning at the Pima County Board of Supervisors Meeting: The Pima County Board of Supervisors will be discussing the ecological considerations relative to the proposed construction of an Interstate 10 bypass route around Tucson. Please attend if you can and show that the public supports this strong resolution in opposition to the bypass concept. The Pima County Board meeting will be held at 9am, Tuesday December 18, BOS Hearing Room, 130 W. Congress, 1st Floor. While this meeting will also start at 9 AM, you will need to show up by 8:30 AM if you wish to sign up to speak (3 min limit). If you haven't yet submitted your comments on the Bypass Feasibility Study, please do so ASAP, at the very latest by December 20th.

- (Related Story) International Herald Tribune Declares San Pedro Valley an Imperiled Landscape: The sign on the dusty road running past Andy Smallhouse's cattle ranch reads "No Pavement 50 Miles," and he would rather it stay that way, especially since the alternative could be a freeway. The biggest road in the area now is Interstate 10, about 40 miles away. But state planners are drawing lines on a map, and some of them would route a proposed I-10 bypass right through his southern Arizona spread. "We don't see any way possible for an interstate to come through the middle of us and not interrupt what we're doing," said Smallhouse, whose great-great-grandfather established the ranch in 1884. "We might possibly profit from it, but we're not really interested in that aspect."

- Researchers Discover Another Instance of Meteorite Damage to Ancient North American Megafauna: An ancient meteor impact in North America sent up waves of rock fragments that peppered prehistoric mammals with "space shrapnel" about 34,000 years ago, scientists say. Many of the animals, particularly in the region near present-day Alaska, didn't survive. That's the story being pieced together by a research team led by Richard Firestone of the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory in Berkeley, California. - National Geographic

- Planned Pima County Wastewater Plant is Relocated to Avoid Hohokam Site, Saving County 2 Million Dollars: Rather than excavate the archaeological site, the county covered it up again.
"Over the last decade or so, there has been a change in archaeology ethics," Anyon said. "So much development has taken place along the Santa Cruz River, and there has been so much archaeology lost … that when we find something we can conserve, we prefer to conserve it." County officials don't know yet if the site will be disturbed when they build the new plant. They will try to design around it, but they may not be able to.
But if the site is excavated at a later date, the archaeological techniques might be better and more might be gleaned from it, Anyon said. "In a way, it's banking the archaeology for the future," he said.

- Call for Participants, Arizona Archaeology Expo: This is a call for 2008 Arizona Archaeology Expo participants!! Participant forms for the Arizona Archaeology Expo to be held at the Arizona State Museum, University of Arizona, Tucson on March 1-2, 2008 are due! We still have room, so take advantage of this great opportunity to meet your public outreach goals and responsibilities! Hope to hear from you soon! Thanks, Ann Howard.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Time Magazine Advocates Antiquity Trade, Joe Ben Wheat Scholarship

Southwestern Archaeology Making the News - A Service of the Center for Desert Archaeology

- Time Magazine Advises the Public that Investment in Antiquities is "Hot:" The good news is that it is possible for the individual investor to buy antiquities — and for a surprisingly moderate sum. According to John Ambrose, founder and director of Fragments of Time, a Boston-area antiquities dealer, they're within even a modest investor's reach. "For under $10,000 a year you could acquire two to four quality objects with good provenance that you could expect would not only hold their value but increase in value over time," he says. In the past, the increase was anywhere from 8 to 9% annually, but in recent years that figure has gone up.,8599,1693792,00.html?xid=rss-business

- Nominations for the 2008 Joe Ben Wheat Research Scholarship are Being Accepted
at the University of Colorado Museum: The scholarship was established to honor the memory of Joe Ben Wheat, a leading scholar of the American Southwest. Dr. Wheat was a curator at the University of Colorado Museum for over 40 years. He was a consummate scholar of the anthropology of the American Southwest and Colorado Plains. His work in Southwestern Indian jewelry, textiles, and pottery significantly expanded the scope and quality of the Museum's collections. His archaeological research in Paleoindian and Puebloan archaeology was original and challenging. The scholarship supports graduate studies in Dr. Wheat’s areas of research. - Ms Word Document

- Native American Protests Begin at 9th Circuit Court of Appeals: Chanting and beating drums, American Indians marched to a federal appeals court to oppose the use of treated sewage to make snow in Arizona mountains they hold sacred. About 150 activists marched Tuesday to the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for a hearing in the case.

- National Spatial Data Infrastructure Program Open for Cooperative Programs and Projects: You may want to pass this information along to your state, local, tribal, and academic partners for their interest: the 2008 National Spatial Data Infrastructure (NSDI) Cooperative Agreements Program (CAP) is still open for proposal submittal and will close on December 18, 2007. The purpose of the NSDI CAP is to fund innovative projects in the geospatial data community to build the infrastructure necessary to effectively discover, access, share, manage, and use digital geographic data. A short description of this year's categories and a link to the full 2008 NSDI CAP announcement can be found at

- Lecture in Tucson to Discuss Hohokam Survival in the Arid Desert Southwest: "Ancient Farming Strategies: How Did the Hohokam Survive in Our Arid Landscape?" will be presented by archaeologist John Madsen, Thursday, Dec. 20th at 7:30 p.m. at the Old Pueblo Archaeology auditorium, 5100 W. Ina Road Bldg. 8, Our guest speaker, Mr. John Madsen, is an Associate Curator of Archaeology at the Arizona State Museum, John’s research interests have included close examination of early and late Classic period Hohokam platform mound communities. He has coauthored and authored articles and books on Hohokam prehistory within the region of the lower Santa Cruz River basin. The presentation, part of Old Pueblo's Third Thursday lecture series is free and open to the public.

- Lecture in Tucson to Explore the Topic of Preservation Archaeology in the Upper Little Colorado Basin. As part of the Arizona Historical and Archaeological Society's December meeting, Doug Gann will present "Preservation Archaeology at Casa Malpais." Doug is a preservation archaeologist at the Center for Desert Archaeology in Tucson. He has been assisting the Little Colorado Chapter of the Arizona Archaeological Society as they continue their heroic efforts to preserve and understand the unique ancestral Puebloan site of Casa Malpais. Lecture will be held at 7:30 pm, Monday, December 17th at the Duval Auditorium, within the Arizona Health Sciences Center, 1501 N Campbell Ave, Tucson.

- Employment Opportunities (Casa Grande Ruins): Casa Grande Ruins National Monument (CAGR) will be filling three to four jobs in the Cultural Resources Division this year. The first job is being advertised as a GS-5 Archeological Technician right now. The others will be advertised on the website between now and January 30 as GS-7 Archeological Technicians and a GS-5 Laborer. These positions are all entry level. Due to the small size of our park, these new staff will have a unique opportunity to participate in various aspects of resource management. Upcoming projects at CAGR include the drafting, compliance and implementation of the Compound B Preservation Plan, documentation and condition assessment work, treatment history research projects, site impacts monitoring, and preservation of both historic buildings and prehistoric sites. Skill with databases, word processing, and mapping programs will be helpful. Though these positions are being advertised under the archeological technician and laborer series, students with a background in historic preservation, materials science, natural resource management, biology, ecology, archeology, museum studies, and/or
archeology are all encouraged to apply for these positions. Please be sure to include a short essay with your application materials that answers the set of 3-5 questions listed under "How you will be evaluated:" in the "Qualifications & Evaluations" tab of each Job Announcement. Please also indicate if you are only available for summer employment. Each announcement is scored separately according to applicants' qualifications, so submitting your resume to more than one announcement will only increase your chances of getting hired. CAGR website:

Thanks to Gerald Kelso for contributions to today's newsletter.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Ancient Puebloan Beer, New Genetic Evidence on Peopling of the New World.

Southwestern Archaeology Making the News - A Service of the Center for Desert Archaeology

- A Prehistory of Puebloan Beer? Some archaeologists say in the distant past New Mexico was a dry watering hole, a dark place where no beer, no fermentation existed. Glenna Dean, the state archaeologist, isn't one of them. If New Mexico's Pueblo Indians didn't have beer 800 to 1,000 years ago, then people in the area would be missing something common to other American Indians who lived in surrounding areas like Arizona and Mexico, she said. "I was puzzled by this certainty by archaeologists that people from Spain had brought the first fermentation to New Mexico," Dean said. "Given that just about any liquid that you can think of will ferment by itself if you lay it out for a while — it's amazing to think this wouldn't happen here." - Albuquerque Tribune
- A Genetic Perspective on the Peopling of the New World: A single population of prehistoric Siberians crossed the Bering Strait into Alaska and subsequently fanned out to populate North and South America, according to a new genetic analysis of present-day indigenous Americans. The study also hints that early Americans reached Central and South America by migrating down the Pacific coast by land or sea and only later spread into the interior of South America.

- Third Archaeology Expo Planning Meeting for the 2008 Arizona Archaeology and Heritage Awareness Month: Monday January 7, 2008 at 10:30 a.m. Room 309, North Building Arizona State Museum, U of A, Tucson. Please come and share your ideas as the State Historic Preservation Office (SHPO) continues planning for the 2008 Arizona Archaeology Expo that will be held on March 1-2, 2008 at the Arizona State Museum, the University of Arizona in Tucson. We will be exchanging ideas with the various partners; discussing programming, publicity, lay out and organization, sponsors, funding, off-site activities, etc. For More Information, Please Contact: Ann Howard, Public Archaeology Programs Manager State Historic Preservation Office 602/542-7138, or Rich Lange, Arizona State Museum 520/621-6275,

- The Use of Effluent at Snowbowl Moves Back to Appeals Court: In March this year, a California circuit court blocked the proposed ski area expansion and snowmaking with treated sewage and held the U.S. Forest Service had violated its own laws by not fully studying the impact of human contact with fake snow made from the treated sewage. The ruling also determined that the development on the peak would substantially burden the American Indians' religious practice, which the indigenous communities described as a victory for religious freedom, environmental justice and cultural survival. Not pleased with that verdict, the U.S. forest officials and developers took their case to the U.S. court of appeals in Pasadena, California, which is due to hear the arguments next week about the decision blocking the ski resort owners from further development on the San Francisco Peaks.

- Submerged Spanish Galleon Near Oregon Coast the Newest Feature on the Archaeology Channel: Early encounters between Europeans and Native Americans on the West Coast of North America certainly occurred prior to the well documented Spanish explorations of the 1770s, but very little concrete evidence thus far has been documented. An exciting new archaeological exploration of an exceptional case of early contact on the Oregon coast is the subject of Anthropology Field Notes 5: The Beeswax Ship of Nehalem, the latest video feature on our nonprofit streaming-media Web site, The Archaeology Channel.

- Position Announcement: Cabrillo College in Santa Cruz County, California announces a search for archaeological technology and anthropology instructor (tenure track position). The Archaeology Technology Program and Anthropology Department seek an individual broadly trained in anthropology whose primary teaching
interest is in anthropological and occupational archaeology. The candidate should have expertise in Cultural Resource Management and/or heritage policy and preservation, knowledge of California Archaeology, and experience teaching lower division courses. - Cabrillo College

- Summer Employment Opportunities with HABS/HAER/HALS: The Heritage Documentation Programs (Historic American Buildings Survey/Historic American Engineering Record/Historic American Landscapes Survey), a division of the National Park Service, seeks applications from qualified individuals for summer employment documenting historic sites and structures of architectural, landscape and technological significance throughout the country. Duties involve on-site field work and preparation of measured and interpretive drawings and written historical reports for the HABS/HAER/HALS Collection at the Prints and Photographs Division of the Library of Congress. Projects last twelve weeks, beginning in May/June. Salaries range from approximately $6,000 to approximately $11,000 for the summer, depending on job responsibility, locality of the project, and level of experience. Applicants must be U.S. Citizens. Applications Due: February 4, 2008 (postmark date). Application forms and detailed information can be found on our web site:

- Employment Opportunities with the BLM: The Bureau of Land Management is currently advertising for archaeologist positions in the Phoenix District. Three job openings are advertised onthe USA Jobs website. These positions are open to federal archaeologists and qualified archaeologists who do not currently work for the federal government. We are advertising two permanent positions in the Hassayampa Field Office and one temporary position in the Lower Sonoran Field Office. "Google" the USA Jobs website and click on "search jobs," then on "agency search." Scroll down and click on Interior, Department of the, Bureau of Land Management. Then under "location search," click on AZ-Phoenix, and finally on "search for jobs." This will take you to the AZ BLM job announcements, all on one page, where you will see several announcements for archaeologists. When you click on an announcement, you will find an
overview of duties and instructions on filing an application on-line.

- Historic Preservation Employment Opportunity for Veterans Administration (Job Closes Monday, Dec 17): The position is under the Director, Resource Management Office, Office of Construction and Facilities Management (CFM) under the Office of the Secretary within the Department of Veterans Affairs. The incumbent serves as a Historic Preservation Specialist and provides program support to the National Historic Preservation Officer. Duties include conducting studies and research on VA historic properties holdings and cultural resources; conducting field surveys and evaluating findings; documenting and determining historic value, and writing historic structures reports; prepares nominations for submission to the National Register of Historic Places in all VA properties; develops written Memoranda of Understanding/Agreement and other cooperative agreements with other agencies and represents VA on committee, task forces, with other Federal agencies, state agencies, departments, and professional organizations regarding cultural resources of regional, national, and international significance; develops recommendations to enhance cultural resource management requirements; resolve controversies on property interests to include real property interests through VA Loan Guaranty Program and proposed projects submitted for funding through State Home Grant, State Cemetery Grant and Homeless Grant Programs; reviews and analyzes and interprets proposed legislation and assess the impact to current holdings; prepares briefs and papers for publication of historic history on VA holdings; provides guidance and advice to executives and VA field facilities in preservation and design problems; provides expertise to field engineers on project plans for maintenance and repair, renovations, rehabilitation, leasing to assure compliance; develops ongoing training and conducts training within Central Office and at field facilities; maintains historic resources files including extensive documentation on history of facilities; negotiates on behalf of VA with the Advisory Council on historic Preservations, State Preservation Officers, and other federal and state agencies regarding VA undertakings of a complex and controversial nature; prepares information for testimony for Congressional oversight hearing; establishes and maintains extensive historic files, including facility histories, photographs, slides, and other memorabilia, maintains the files of the Art-in-Architecture program; works as part of Task Force Teams as assigned to provide historic preservation technical direction and review capability.

Thanks to Gerald Kelso for contributions to todays newsletter.

Thursday, December 6, 2007

Changes to NAGPRA debated, I-10 Bypass Proposal Meets Strong Opposition

Southwestern Archaeology Making the News - A Service of the Center for Desert Archaeology

- Society for American Archaeology Protests Proposed Changes to NAGPRA: The Society for American Archaeology (SAA) has condemned a proposed rule by the U.S. Department of Interior that would put in jeopardy the highly productive compromise that was reached when the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act (NAGPRA) was passed in 1990. On October 16, 2007, the Department of the Interior published draft regulations that would destroy the use of cultural affiliation as the principle for repatriation decisions, which is at the core of NAGPRA and supported by seventeen years of hard work and effort by tribes, archaeologists, and museum personnel, and replace it with an undefined notion of "cultural relationship." “The Department’s proposed regulations have no basis in law or science and reflect an attempt to impermissibly legislate in a manner not prescribed by Congress.

- Public Comment and Discussion of Proposed Changes to NAGPRA will be Managed by Online Teleconference: The teleconference will be on Tuesday, January 8, 2008 from 2:00 p.m. until 5:00 p.m. Eastern Standard Time, unless business is finished earlier. The teleconference provides the Review Committee with an opportunity to comment on the proposed rule regarding the disposition of culturally unidentifiable human remains [43 CFR 10.11]. - Ms Word Document

- Interstate 10 Bypass Proposal Meets Strong Opposition: A proposed bypass of Tucson and Phoenix from Interstate 10 was roundly criticized at a public meeting sponsored by the Arizona Department of Transportation on Thursday. ADOT engineers are looking into the need and feasibility of such a bypass, citing anticipated population and heavy truck traffic growth that might make it desirable in 20 to 30 years. The idea is in the preliminary study stages, said Dale Buskirk, ADOT project manager for the study. He spoke to about 140 people at the Tucson Jewish Community Center, 300 E. River Road.

- Tucson Citizen Proposes Alternatives to Interstate Bypass: Talk about the wisdom of crowds. At a public meeting last week to help determine if a bypass of Tucson and Phoenix from Interstate 10 should be built, 40 people spoke. All but one opposed the proposal. So do we, for reasons ecological and economic. Plus, the time is right to once again consider an alternative to building more paths for more internal combustion engines: intercity rail service between Tucson and Phoenix. Several of the proposed bypasses would snake through unsullied environs in the San Pedro River Valley and Aravaipa Canyon Wilderness northeast of Tucson.

- Scottsdale Plans Museum of the West: Scottsdale civic leaders are envisioning a $50 million Museum of the West opening on Arizona's centennial - Feb. 14, 2012. A contemporary 48,000-square-foot, solar-powered museum would be built in Scottsdale's downtown gallery district on Main Street Plaza, just blocks from Scottsdale's iconic cowboy sign. - Arizona Republic

- Landscape Art of Stanton Engleheart to be Featured at the Anasazi Heritage Center: An opening celebration will take place at the museum on Sunday, December 9 from 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. A new book, entitled Stanton Englehart: A Life on Canvas,will be available for the first time at this event. Published by Durango author Jules Masterjohn, the book examines the artist’s career and includes a half-hour DVD featuring interviews with Englehart in the locations that most inspire him. Profits from the book will benefit the Stanton Englehart Scholarship Fund for art students at Fort Lewis College.

- Lecture Opportunity (Tucson): Saturday, December 8th, "Agave Beverages in Hospitality, Feasting, and Ritual Traditions of Ancient Mesoamerica and the Borderlands", a lecture by Arizona State Museum archaeologist Suzanne Fish. 12 noon and 2 p.m. at the Western National Park Association, 12880 N. Vistoso Village Drive in Oro Valley. Free and open to the public.

- Arizona State Museum Continues Popular Culture Craft Saturday Program: Saturday, December 8th, Tohono O’odham Traditions of Fun and Games, 1-4 p.m.
Free fun for the whole family. Get riled up for high energy, high impact Toka (similar to hockey)! Try your luck in a game of Gins (geents). Doll making, and exploratory writing round out the day’s hands-on activities.

- Employment Opportunity: The Kansas State Historical Society is seeking a Principal Investigator to lead excavations, analyze material, and produce a report on results of investigations at the Pawnee Indian Village (14RP1) to be conducted in Summer, 2008. Laboratory analysis of previously-excavated material would begin January 1, 2008.
Please visit the Kansas Department of Administration website for instructions for submitting a proposal: Scroll down to the date 12/20/2007 in the left column and look for bid number 10931.

- Employment Opportunity: Archaeologist for Rural Utilities Program. Vacancy Announcement No.: 08-RUS-14JL-DEU Archeologist, GS-0193-12/13. Rural Utilities Service
Assistant Administrator - Water and Environmental Programs Engineering & Environmental Staff. Opens: December 5, 2007 - Closes: January 8, 2008. Applications will be accepted from all United States citizens. To view the full text version of the vacancy announcement, please use the link below.

- Employment Opportunity: Utah SHPO office, Vernal Utah. Matthew Seddon writes: This is a really fantastic opportunity. The person will essentially be an on the ground SHPO in the Vernal BLM field office, an office with a huge and interesting array of archaeological and historical sites and a diverse set of projects. The position includes money beyond the salary to assist with housing in Vernal. The person would not necessarily have to reside in Vernal, but instead could simply commute 3-4 days a week. There would be huge flexibility in how the person could approach the job. We anticipate that basic case review might involve no more than 1-2 days per week (depending on the week of course) with substantial time to work proactively on better ways to find, evaluate, manage, and preserve sites in the Vernal area. Working along with the BLM, the person could have a tremendous positive impact on the management, preservation, and public interpretation of the fantastic archaeological record in the Vernal area. This is also a great opportunity for someone to learn about cultural resource management from both the federal agency side and the SHPO side. We expect that a person could walk out of this job highly qualified for any job in CRM, and particularly for the vast and growing set of agency jobs that will be opening up in a few years as long-time agency archaeologists would retire.

Thanks to Gerald Kelso, Teresa Paglione, and Matthew Seddon for contributions to today's newsletter.

Friday, November 30, 2007

9 Million Dollar Donation to Tree Ring Lab & The Future of the West

Southwestern Archaeology Making the News - A Service of the Center for Desert Archaeology

- Agnese Haury Provides U of A Tree Ring Laboratory with a Nine Million Dollar Gift: A climate record of the world over thousands of years is written in the 2 million tree specimens collected by the UA's tree-ring laboratory, an archive now boxed away and stacked floor to ceiling in the cramped bowels of Arizona Stadium. With a $9 million donation the Laboratory of Tree-Ring Research will formally announce Friday, the collection is on the verge of moving from its ignoble home to a new climate-controlled facility that will expand its accessibility to researchers and the public.

- University of Arizona Examining Preservation at the Home of A. E. Douglas: The Douglass House, a turn-of-the-century home once owned by the UA's first academic superstar, has long attracted the attention of preservationists on campus and is now an administration priority for restoration. "There is very significant and sincere interest in restoring the building," said Albert Tarcola, director of facilities management. "It's on my list as No. 1 to be restored."

- Is the West losing its Wild? The search for fossil fuels across the American west is turning some of the nation's last open spaces into industrial zones and putting protected areas and wildlife risk. Jim Robbins reports on how the U.S. government is allowing energy companies to carve up treasured landscapes—one well at a time - Conde Nast Traveller

- (Related Story) Study of Threats to National Parks Finds Southwestern Archaeological Parks in Danger: Though protected from development, these ten parks are in harm's way. - Conde Nast Traveller

- The Viking Age in Iceland is the Topic of the Newest Feature on the Archaeology Channel: The Viking Age in Iceland, heretofore known to us primarily through the oral tradition as expressed in the Icelandic Sagas, now is yielding up its secrets through the methods of archaeology. The cultural and environmental dynamics of the Conversion Period, when Christianity became established, is the subject of A Viking Landscape: The Mosfell Archaeological Project, the latest video feature on our nonprofit streaming-media Web site, The Archaeology Channel.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Preservation at Camp Naco, I-10 Bypass Meetings, National Heritage Areas

Archaeology Making the News - A Service of the Center for Desert Archaeology

- Preservation at Camp Naco Moves Forward: Thousands of American troops swarmed here long ago, a response to border friction of a different era. A visible reminder of that turbulent 1911-1923 timeframe — the stucco-walled barracks and officers quarters of Camp Naco — has been placed on the Arizona Preservation Foundation’s 2007 Most Endangered Historic Places list. - Sierra Vista Herald

- Public Meetings on I-10 Bypass begin Tonight: The Arizona Department of Transportation has announced the dates of locations for the next round of public meetings on the subject of an Interstate 10 bypass route. All meetings will be held from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. with a presentation at 6 p.m. Please attend a meeting and make your voice heard regarding the impact of an interstate bypass through rural and environmentally sensitive landscapes.
Http:// - MS Word Document

- Preserving Hopi Katsina Carving Traditions: When she was 19, Debra Drye took her future in her hands. "One day, I asked my grandfather what would happen to our community when there's no more kachina carvers. "Without a word, he handed me a knife." Kachina carvers are traditionally men. Nonetheless, Drye is perhaps the only Hopi woman to reverse long-standing tribal traditions, tackling the challenge of preserving her culture by carving kachina dolls.

- National Heritage Areas Catching on and Generating Controversy: Every region of the country has its own piece of Americana that locals brag about to visitors. Increasingly, they are asking Congress to help spread the word through a little-known federal program that designates National Heritage Areas. After approving just two dozen such areas since the early 1980s, Congress adopted 10 last year. The House signed off on six more last month, and the wait list is growing.

- New Mexico SHPO to Give Talk on Sustainabity and Preservation at the Univeristy of New Mexico: Katherine "Kak" Slick will discuss linking historic preservation with sustainability in a public presentation Nov. 30 in Albuquerque. Gov. Bill Richardson appointed Slick as the state historic preservation officer in 2003. With more than three decades of experience, Slick is considered one of the most accomplished historic preservationists in the country, said Chris Wilson, director of the historic preservation and regionalism program at New Mexico State University's School of Architecture and Planning. The presentation is free and open to the public, November 30, 2007. It begins at 5 p.m. at UNM's George Pearl Hall at the School of Architecture and Planning on the corner of Central Ave. and Cornell NE. - New Mexico Business Weekly

- Book Review, Reclaiming Diné History: A Diné woman from the Zia and Salt clans and the first Navajo to earn a doctorate in history (from Northern Arizona University in 1999), Denetdale has lately opened my eyes to some of the colonial backwash that is still swishing around and obscuring our view of the Navajo, the largest Native American nation in the United States. In her by turns scholarly and personal hybrid Reclaiming Diné History, Denetdale retells Navajo history in a way that treats the oral tradition with the same respect given to the written histories, written largely by the various colonial powers, or agents thereof. These written histories have long taken swipes at the continent's indigenous residents.

- Travelogue - Touring Kinishba: Seven centuries ago, this place might have seemed like a grand stone metropolis in a high lonesome landscape. The ruins site — near the town of Fort Apache on lands of the White Mountain Apache Tribe — was once a village with 500 or more ground-floor rooms, some of them standing two or three stories high. At its peak, around A.D. 1325, the prehistoric pueblo may have been home to 800 to 1,000 people.

Monday, November 19, 2007

San Diego Fire Impacts, Spirituality and Sense of Place in New Mexico

Southwestern Archaeology Making the News - A Service of the Center for Desert Archaeology

- Assessing the Impact of the San Diego Fires on Historic Structures: We have been receiving many calls and emails from the public and members in regard to the historic sites that the fires may have affected. At this time verifiable information is scarce due to limited access. A comprehensive review of the historic structures damaged or destroyed in the recent San Diego County fires can be found the Save Our Heritage Organization (SOHO) San Diego website:

- Seeking Spirituality, in Past and Present New Mexico: It is a blindingly bright Southwest autumn morning in Frijoles Canyon, site of a good-sized Ancient Puebloan settlement whose spare but suggestive ruins make up the core of New Mexico's Bandelier National Monument. I am alone, my labored breathing the only sound disturbing the cottony silence in this part of the canyon. Having just climbed 140 feet up three sets of ladders and worn rock steps into a large cleft in the canyon wall called Alcove House, I now descend a ladder to the dirt floor of a covered circular chamber called a kiva. - US News and World Report

- Ancient Puebloan Approaches to Water Harvesting Needed in the Modern Southwest: When I thought about how Coloradans of the past handled water needs, I was struck by the good sense of our oldest Colorado predecessors - the Anasazi Indians living in the arid conditions of what is now Mesa Verde National Park in the Four Corners area of southwestern Colorado. Simply put, the Anasazi collected and stored rainwater, an effective solution. Rainwater harvesting is practiced in various forms in states surrounding Colorado, including Arizona, New Mexico and Texas. - Rocky Mountain News

Thanks to Jackson Underwood for contributions to Today's Newsletter

Friday, November 16, 2007

ADA Kudos for Casa Grande National Monument, Park Service News, Rock Art Recording Opportunity

Southwestern Archaeology Making the News - A Service of the Center for Desert Archaeology

- Larry Stewart, Facilities Manager at Casa Grande National Monument is Given Award for Innovative Practice in ADA Compliance: 2006 was a banner year featuring the biggest challenge yet: Turning the former stair-step access platform at the Hohokam ballcourt into an ADA-compliant viewing perch. Stewart said the initial plans called for an "earthen mound, low-maintenance/no-maintenance design" - which the park pulled off, opening the new platform in the fall of 2006. - Tri Valley Central

- Discovery of Glass Beads in the Southeast Leads to Questions About Spanish Colonization Routes: The discovery of glass beads and ancient slivers of iron in South Georgia, US, might prompt historians to reconsider the exact path that Spaniards took during their first successful colonization expedition in North America. The finding, made by a high school girl during a digging expedition, is of a glass bead no larger than a pencil eraser. It has four other beads, plus two ancient slivers of iron. Historians are certain that the beads came from the glass forges of Murano, a Venetian island. They're equally sure the beads were manufactured early in the 16th century. The Italians used them in trade with the Spaniards.

- Volunteer Opportunity for Rock Art Recording: Sears Point Rock Art Site Recording Opportunities in 2008. Four, one-week sessions: January 6 - 19 and February 24 - March 8. Trained rock art site recorders are invited to help Don Weaver, Bob Mark, and Evelyn Billo map and record the Sears Point site on BLM property in Southern AZ. You may volunteer for any of the four one-week sessions (or for 2, 3, or all 4 of them). Sears Point is an extensive site with petroglyphs on basalt cliff faces and boulders and other related archaeological features. You must sign the BLM volunteer form and agree not to disclose site information. You need to be in good physical condition, be aware of steep slopes, snakes, bees, etc. Contact Evelyn Billo at

- Early Man in SE Nevada to be Featured as Part of Native American Day At the Lost City Museum in Overton NV (Saturday).

- Progress on the National Park Service Centennial Initiative: In 2016, the National Park Service turns 100 years old. In preparation for the birthday bash, lawmakers are trying to wrap up a special present. They're calling it the National Park Centennial Initiative. The plan calls for an extra $3 billion for the National Park System over the course of 10 years.
According to the plan, $1 billion would go directly on top of the Park Service's current budget and would be directed at basic park operations. The rest would be part of a challenge. Essentially, the federal government would match private donations up to $100 million a year. That money will be directed at new projects.

- National Park Service is Embracing Virtual Field Trips: The "Tails from the Tetons" electronic field trip has seven "webisodes" covering topics including wolves, forest fires and how plants and animals adapt to their environment. The final Webcast was a live question-and-answer session with rangers. Teachers tune in for free, and the National Park Foundation and other nonprofits pick up production costs.

- Internet Based Integration of Data For Preservation and Research at Historic Annapolis: A new online tool developed by the University of Maryland makes Annapolis one of the most accessible cities in the world archaeologically and historically. The developer says the tool could have wide application in other cities with major historic areas. The Web site, Preservation Search, offers immediate access to interactive maps, photos and text of the Annapolis historic district. It provides far greater digital detail and comprehensiveness than in almost any other city, according to its creator, University of Maryland archaeologist Mark Leone. He adds that it will be a boon to homeowners, city officials, preservationists and tourists.

- Weekend of Events at the Arizona State Museum: Friday, November 16, 2007
Speaking Volumes: A series of discussions in honor of the ASM Library’s 50th Anniversary Join us for coffee and conversation 4-6:00 p.m. Guest speakers include Ray Thompson, ASM director emeritus and John Olsen, head, UA Anthropology Department. Free and open to the public. Your generous donations will help the library meet its mission. On November 16, 17 and 18, 2007 the Arizona State Museum Celebrates Member Appreciation Days. As we approach Thanksgiving, Native Goods, the museum store, shows its appreciation for new and continuing ASM members by offering a double-discount weekend - 20% OFF ALL PURCHASES. Some restrictions apply. On Saturday, November 17, 2007 the museum offers another CULTURE CRAFT SATURDAY: Stories Masks Tell, 1-4 p.m. Arizona State Museum offers one final chance to enjoy the exhibition “Masks of Mexico: Santos, Diablos, y Mas” before it closes forever. In a free, family-oriented program, folks can hear and see the stories that masks tell through dance and drama. Performers include performance artist Zarco Guerrero, Ballet Folklorico La Paloma, Mariachi Aztlan and luchadores El Cuervo and The Prophet.

- Reminder: Participation Forms for Arizona Archaeology Month are Due Tomorrow, Nov. 17. Dear Friends of Arizona Archaeology and Heritage Awareness Month: If you are planning to have an event or activity during the 2008 celebration of Arizona Archaeology and Heritage Awareness Month (and we hope that you are!), please note that your participation forms are due on November 17th. It is important that we get your information around that time, as we will be needing to get it entered and ready for publication in the Listing of Events brochure. Thank you very much for your continued support of your state's heritage education efforts! Sincerely, Ann Howard, Public Archaeology Programs Manager, SHPO.

Thanks To Dwight Riggs for Contributions to Today's Newsletter

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Hayden Homestead to be Preserved in Place, Leupp Internment Camp

Southwestern Archaeology Making the News - A Service of the Center for Desert Archaeology

- Tempe Historic Preservation Commission Supports Development Plan that Preserves Hayden Homestead: Tempe's Historic Preservation Commission whole-heartedly backed a redevelopment plan for the historic Hayden home-turned-Monti's La Casa Vieja steakhouse Thursday night, after vehemently trashing previous designs and sending the developer "back to the drawing board" only weeks before. "The new plan not only recognizes, but further honors this historic building," said Ann Patterson, who was one of the commission's most outspoken opponents of the previous version.

- History of the Leupp Internment Camp: There isn't much left today on the site of a World War II isolation camp in Old Leupp on the Navajo Reservation -- rubble, brush, bits of sandstone blocks, rusty cans and twisted metal. And silence, almost complete silence, where Japanese-American men were held against their will in a fenced camp guarded by armed soldiers. - Arizona Daily Sun

- The 'Kino Missions' of Arizona and Sonora" topic of Old Pueblo Archaeology's Third Thursday lecture by Anthropologist/folklorist James S. "Big Jim" Griffith. November 15, at 7:30 pm. Our guest speaker Jim Griffith received the Ph.D. in Cultural Anthropology and Art History in 1974. He is currently retired after heading up the Southwest Folklore Center of the UA Library for nineteen years. He has written several books and many articles on the folklore, folk life, and traditional arts of Arizona and Sonora. Griffith has led Kino Mission Tours for the Southwestern Missions Research Center for over twenty years.Old Pueblo Archaeology Center’s monthly “Third Thursdays” lecture programs are held on the third Thursday of each month starting at 7:30 p.m. in the Old Pueblo auditorium, 5100 W. Ina Road Bldg. 8. Free. For more info: 520.798.1201

- New Video on the Archaeology Channel - Lewis, Clark, and the Clatsop in Oregon: We gain a fresh perspective when we hear about important historical events as related by indigenous people and their oral traditions. The winter spent by explorers Lewis and Clark on the Oregon coast as told by the native Clatsop people is the subject of A Clatsop Winter Story, the latest video feature on our nonprofit streaming-media Web site, The Archaeology Channel

- Reminder, Lecture Tonight in Tucson (Tuesday, November 13, 2007): The Enigmatic Mystery of Chacoan Cylinder Jars. There are only 210 known ceramic cylinder jars in the prehispanic American Southwest. 192 of those come from Pueblo Bonito in Chaco Canyon. Patricia Crown, professor of anthropology at the University of New Mexico, explores the production of the unusual vessels and reveals new insights into their use at Chaco. Lecture at 7:00 p.m. at the Center for English as a Second Language, room 102 (one building east of ASM north). Reception follows the lecture at Arizona State Museum. Free and open to the public. This is the 2007 Southwest Land, Culture and Society Annual Distinguished Lecture.

Friday, November 9, 2007

More On Santa Cruz Valley Heritage Area, Lectures and Training Opportunities

Southwestern Archaeology Making the News - A Service of the Center for Desert Archaeology

- Correction / Update: The Enigmatic Mystery of Chacoan Cylinder Jars Lecture will be held Tuesday, November 13, 2007. : There are only 210 known ceramic cylinder jars in the prehispanic American Southwest. 192 of those come from Pueblo Bonito in Chaco Canyon. Patricia Crown, professor of anthropology at the University of New Mexico, explores the production of the unusual vessels and reveals new insights into their use at Chaco. Lecture at 7:00 p.m. at the Center for English as a Second Language, room 102 (one building east of ASM north). Reception follows the lecture at Arizona State Museum. Free and open to the public.

- Progress on the Santa Cruz Valley National Heritage Area: It's fair to say that the idea of heritage tourism found an early life in the wilds of Arizona. While building swanky hotels and lunch counters throughout the southwest along the Santa Fe Railroad, the great travel impresario Fred Harvey noticed how fascinated people were with anything relating to the region's mysterious, seemingly unknowable indigenous people.

- More on Santa Cruz Valley NHA: The cottonwoods, willows, mesquites, and palo verde trees that once towered over the banks of the Colorado River near Yuma, Ariz., have returned. These native trees once again shade hikers and shelter wildlife, thanks to a massive wetlands restoration effort in the Yuma Crossing National Heritage Area. Since the area was officially designated in 2000, the groups working within its boundaries have also restored a historic bridge and created an $80 million riverfront development plan to revitalize the heart of the town. Now, the West may soon get its sixth national heritage area, in the Santa Cruz Valley of southeastern Arizona.

- Public Comments Sought on World Heritage Site Designations: National Park Service staff recommendations and those of the U.S. National Commission for UNESCO regarding sites to be included in a new U.S. World Heritage Tentative List have been published in the Federal Register for public comment. All comments received will be considered by the National Park Service and the Assistant Secretary of the Interior for Fish and Wildlife and Parks and the Secretary of the Interior for their use in developing a final U.S . Tentative List, which is to be submitted to the UNESCO World Heritage Centre by February 1st. NPS staff recommendations, along with recommendations by the U.S. National Commission for UNESCO, appear at the end of this release. Public comments will be accepted for 30 days. - National Park Service

- Phoenix High School Students Pitch in to Assist Mesa Grande: Students at Westwood High School won't have to leave their neighborhood to get a history lesson about the Valley's ancient culture and maybe a civics lesson as well. The sophomores in teacher Brian Buck's college-bound classes are planning to marshal forces with the Arizona Museum of Natural History to raise money to pay for an interpretative visitors center, dubbed Mesa Grande Cultural Center.

- Safford Lecture Focuses upon Ancient Cultural Melting Pot: The hugely popular Discover Anthropology lecture series will continue Saturday, Nov. 10, at 6:30 p.m. at the college’s Discovery Park Campus with “An Ancient Cultural Melting Pot: The Safford Basin in the 13th and 14th Centuries.” The lecture will be presented by Dr. Anna Neuzil, a ceramic analyst for Tierra Right of Way Services. "Dr. Neuzil worked extensively in the Gila and Aravaipa valleys while developing her dissertation. - Eastern Arizona Courier

- Oro Valley Considers Preservation Plans for Steam Pump Ranch: Members of the public came out to voice their opinions and concerns about historic preservation efforts at Steam Pump Ranch, Oro Valley’s territorial-era settlement. Representatives from the architectural firm Poster Frost were on hand to explain three preservation scenarios for the ranch house and 15-acre property, which dates to the 1870s.

- Training Opportunity: The Nevada Archaeological Site Stewardship Program (NASSP) is holding a Basic Site Stewardship Training class in Sparks, NV in November 17th at 9 am at the USFS office in Sparks, Nevada; . We have site stewards assigned throughout the State of Nevada and are in need of help to preserve and protect at-risk sites; if you can’t make this training class we will put your name on a list and let you know when the next class will be held. Space is limited, so all interested volunteers should RSVP to Joanne Murray the Nevada Northwestern Regional Coordinator at or (775) 424-4050 by November 15th. All site stewards are required to complete this class before being assigned a site on public lands located within Nevada, so bring your family and friends so that they too can become a steward and help preserve Nevada’s diverse archaeological and paleontological resources for the future.

- Training Opportunity: Section 106 Procedures: The Section 106 Essentials is a two day course designed for those who are new to Section 106 review or those who want a refresher on its basic operation. Taught by the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation (ACHP), this course explains the requirements of Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act, which applies any time a federal, federally assisted, or federally approved activity might affect a property listed in or eligible for the National Register of Historic Places.

- Training Opportunity: High Definition Documentation for Archaeology and Architecture. This two-day, 3 hour webinar will provide participants with a comprehensive understanding of high-definition documentation (HDD) for cultural heritage, with the intention of producing digital content that is also useful for public interpretation and tourism. Multiple technologies and methods will be shown and discussed, including GPS, panoramic photography, high-dynamic range photography (HDR), 3D laser scanning (HDS), and data archiving and management. Case studies of the use of HDD at Mesa Verde National Park and the Statue of Liberty will be used to demonstrate field application and usage of this methodology. The webinar, workshops and information on HDD was developed with funding from the National Center for Preservation Technology and Training (NCPTT). - National Park Service

Thanks to Brain Kenny, Gerard Kelso, and Sali Underwood for contributions to today's newsletter

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Chaco Cylinder Jar Lecture in Tucson, Possible Reprieve for Texas Preserve, Navajo Weaving

Southwestern Archaeology Making the News - A Service of the Center for Desert Archaeology

- The Enigmatic Mystery of Chacoan Cylinder Jars is the subject of the 2007 Southwest Land, Culture and Society Annual Distinguished Lecture: There are only 210 known ceramic cylinder jars in the prehispanic American Southwest. 192 of those come from Pueblo Bonito in Chaco Canyon. Patricia Crown, professor of anthropology at the University of New Mexico, explores the production of the unusual vessels and reveals new insights into their use at Chaco. Lecture at 7:00 p.m. at the Center for English as a Second Language, room 102 (one building east of ASM north). Reception follows the lecture at Arizona State Museum. Free and open to the public.

- Park Service Offered Opportunity to Purchase Texas Preserve: The Texas School Land Board on Tuesday gave the National Park Service 90 days to submit an offer to buy the Christmas Mountains Ranch. Texas Land Commissioner Jerry Patterson wants to sell the 9,000-acre tract, because the state, he says, cannot adequately conserve the land. The Conservation Fund donated the land to Texas in 1991 with strict restrictions on its use.

- Hohokam Canals 101:"The Hohokam engineers were keenly aware of the local topography, the dips and slopes, drainages and soils. They developed a sophisticated knowledge of the flow of water through channels and developed a series of techniques for delivering water to the surface of the fields. Each technique was appropriate for a specific topographic setting, such as steep slopes and flat river terraces." - The Arizona Republic

- Navajo Weavers, The Next Generation, Works on Display at the Heard: Discover the work of the next generation of Navajo weavers at the Heard Museum West's new exhibit. 9:30 a.m.-5 p.m., Tuesday through Sunday. Through March. Heard Museum West, 16126 N. Civic Center Plaza, Surprise. $2-$5. 623-344-2200, - The Arizona Republic

- Related Story, Men who Weave: In William Whitehair's family, everyone weaves rugs, except for his sister. Despite the prevailing Navajo perspective that weaving is for women, the story goes that Whitehair's father supported his career choice. He said, "If you're going to weave, do it well."

- Second Archaeology Expo Planning Meeting for 2008 Arizona Archaeology and Heritage Awareness Month: Tuesday, November 13, 2007 at 10:00 a.m. State Historic Preservation Office, Arizona State Parks 1300 W. Washington, Phoenix. Please come and share your ideas as the State Historic Preservation Office (SHPO) continues planning for the 2008 Arizona Archaeology Expo that will be held on March 1-2, 2008 at the Arizona State Museum, the University of Arizona in Tucson. We will be exchanging ideas with the various partners; discussing programming, publicity, lay out and organization, sponsors, funding, off-site activities, etc. The SHPO values our partnerships with you & we hope to see you at this meeting, and at future planning efforts, for the 2008 AAHAM public programming. For More Information, Please Contact: Ann Howard, Public Archaeology Programs Manager State Historic Preservation Office 602/542-7138, or Rich Lange, Arizona State Museum 520/621-6275,

- Archaeology of Caves and Rock Shelters to be Discussed at the Edge of the Cedars Musuem: Have you ever come across a rock shelter or cave and just had to look inside? Questions emerge: who else had been there; is that a fire hearth; did anyone ever sleep here; how old is that corn cob? As natural shelters, caves and even rock overhangs hold a mystique all their own. Humans have been drawn to caves since the beginning of time, for habitation, temporary shelter, storage, ceremonial observances, and connection to ancestors, among many other practical and spiritual considerations. Scott Nicolay has been fascinated by caves most of his adult life. It was this fascination that has led him to explore the history of human connection with natural openings in the landscape. Scott’s research focuses on the ritual use of caves and other earth openings in the Southwest. You are invited to hear Scott’s presentation on Thursday, November 15th, at 6:30 pm at Edge of the Cedars Museum. The program is free and open to everyone! The Edge of the Cedars Museum is located at 660 West, 400 North, Blanding, Utah. Contact us at 435-678-2238 for information on this and other quality programs and events.

- Archaeology and Geology of the Coachella Valley is the Subject of a Free Lecture on Saturday: Archaeologist Harry Quinn will discuss how the Coachella Valley's first inhabitants adapted the to the desert in "Secrets of the Santa Rosas" 10:30 a.m. this Saturday at the La Quinta Library. Quinn's talk, free and open to the public, will also touch on the geology of the Santa Rosa mountains and how the San Andreas fault system affects life in the valley. "People inquire all the time" about those issues, said Louise Neeley, La Quinta Historical Society board member. Quinn's presentation is part of Historical Society's monthly "Historical Perspectives" events. The event is free, and library is at 78-275 Calle Tampico. - The Desert Sun

Monday, November 5, 2007

Reform of 1872 Mining Law Possible, Anti-Preservation in Texas

Southwestern Archaeology Making the News - A Service of the Center for Desert Archaeology

- Reform of 1872 Mining Law Would Force Mining Companies to Comply with Section 106: Laura Watchempino of the Haaku Water Office at the Pueblo of Acoma said Thursday that if the reform act gets through the House and Senate and past a presidential veto, “maybe there will be some hope for some real reform and these permits won’t be just automatically granted, because right now, that’s what they’ve been relying on — this 1872 mining law.” “The Forest Service and everybody has been saying, ‘OK, we have to let them explore because this is the law.’ Acoma and the 19 pueblos, Hopi, as well as the Navajo Nation have been saying, ‘Wait a minute. You have to consult with us under Section 106 of the Historic Preservation Act.’ ”Watchempino is hopeful the reform act will provide a measure of protection for Mount Taylor, near Grants, a sacred site to the pueblos, Navajo and Hopi. - The Gallup Independent

- Pending Sale of Texas Preserve Raises Troubling Preservation Questions: As a Comanche moon rose one night last week over the West Texas border town of Terlingua, the Christmas Mountains Association convened over Mexican food in the Longhorn Ranch Motel. "Proceed as if we're not going out of business," said Tom Alex, the group's president. But he did not sound confident. In Austin, 360 miles east, the state's general land commissioner was collecting bids to do what conservationists say is all but unheard of — selling a state wildlife preserve to a private buyer.

- Texas Judge Voids Archaeological Conservancy Donation: This month, a judge reaffirmed the right of the original owners to reclaim the 21/2-acre tract between RM 1431 and Parmer Lane in Cedar Park from an archaeological conservation group. The disputed land was never excavated, but it's next to an extraordinary piece of Texas history that attracted Collins and other researchers.

- Gila Cliff Dwellings Announces Change In Tour Schedule: Gila Cliff Dwellings National Monument Superintendent Steve Riley announced today the seasonal change from two daily tours to one. Beginning on November 4, 2007 one guided tour of the cliff dwellings will be offered daily at 12:00 pm. Please allow 20-30 minutes to hike to the first cave where the tour begins. Visitors are always welcome to tour the dwellings on their own when the trail is open. The trail through Gila Cliff Dwellings National Monument is open from 9:00 am to 4:00 pm, including holidays. All visitors must exit the monument by 5:00 pm. The Gila Visitor Center is open daily from 8:00 am to 4:30 pm (closed Thanksgiving Day, December 25, and January 1st).

Friday, November 2, 2007

Congressional Action on Utah BLM, Preserve America, and Save America's Treasures. PeFo and Taliesin West Nominated for World Heritage Status

Southwestern Archaeology Making the News - A Service of the Center for Desert Archaeology

- Congressional Leaders Attempt to Protect Utah Sites from the BLM Off Road Vehicle Plan: Today, ninety-three members of the House of Representatives sent an urgent letter to Secretary of the Interior Dirk Kempthorne requesting that he protect Utah’s irreplaceable archaeological artifacts and magnificent roadless areas from the damage caused by off-road vehicles. The congressional appeal comes at a critical juncture as DOI’s Bureau of Land Management (BLM) is rushing to finalize its proposed off-road vehicle travel plans, covering 11 million acres of Utah’s public land, by mid-2008. Travel plan decisions made in Utah could set the tone for off-road vehicle plans across the West.

- Clinton and Domenici Introduce Bill to Formalize "Preserve America" and "Save America's Treasures:" A new bi-partisan bill introduced by U.S. Sens. Hillary Rodham Clinton, D-NY, and Pete Domenici, R-NM, promises to formalize a program that has funneled money toward historic preservation. The Preserve America and Save America's Treasures Act (S. 2262) would formally codify the Preserve America and Save America's Treasures programs, which were started through presidential executive orders. The programs are administered by the Department of Interior and have operated without Congressional authorization, which would ensure their long-term viability, said Clinton and Domenici, who were joined by First Lady Laura Bush to unveil the legislation today in Washington, D.C.

- Decline in New Housing Market Impacts Archaeology in the Southwest: The housing slump may have slowed business for archaeologists in Arizona, but it hasn't made the need for their services a thing of the past. "Actually, in the Valley as a whole, there's a lack of field archaeologists," said Glen Rice, a partner at Rio Salado Archaeology LLC. "There's a lot of archaeology going on in the Valley, but there's a plateau in archaeology in the housing sector."

- Petrified Forest National Park and Taliesin West Move Towards World Heritage Site Designation: Petrified Forest National Park and Frank Lloyd Wright's Taliesin West have taken a first step toward being recognized among the world's most significant cultural and natural treasures. The National Park Service has recommended that the northern Arizona park and Wright-designed buildings in Arizona and other states be included in a tentative list for consideration to join the UNESCO World Heritage List.

- Northern Arizona University Offers American Indian Heritage Month: Like a good harvest, this November's American Indian Heritage Month at NAU offers a bountiful menu. More than 60 events celebrate indigenous cultures with some of today's hottest Native authors, speakers, artisans, music, photography, art and more. From learning about celestial influences on Hopi life cycles to watching a Mayan basket take shape or witnessing the weaving of a Navajo chief blanket, diverse cultures find the spotlight in diverse ways.

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Santa Cruz National Heritage Area Moves Forward, New Text on Section 106 Preservation

Southwestern Archaeology Making the News - A Service of the Center for Desert Archaeology

Legislation Declaring the Santa Cruz Basin a National Heritage Area has Passed in the US House of Representatives: Legislation introduced earlier this year by Rep. Raúl M. Grijalva, to establish the Santa Cruz Valley as a National Heritage Area, has passed the U.S. House of Representatives on October 24th. The legislation passed by a vote of 291-122. Part of a package of amendments to the Omnibus Parks and Public Lands Act,the Santa Cruz Valley National Heritage Area Act will help preserve and promote the cultural and natural resources in the Santa Cruz Valley.,13&itemid=143

- New Publication on Section 106 Preservation: Saving Places that Matter: A Citizen's Guide to the National Historic Preservation Act. Tom King, renowned expert on the heritage preservation process in the United States, explains the ins and outs of Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act and how it can be used to protect special places in your community. King will show you the scope of the law, how it is often misinterpreted or ignored by government agencies and developers, and how to use its provisions to force others to pay attention to your concerns.

- Lecture at University of Colorado - Boulder Promises that Colorado University has solved "the Mystery of the Anasazi." The University of Colorado at Boulder Friends of the Libraries will host a lecture titled "CU Solves the 'Mystery of the Anasazi' " by Professor Steve Lekson on Saturday, Nov. 10. he event will be held at 10 a.m. in Paleontology Hall of the CU Museum of Natural History, located in the Henderson Building. The talk is free and open to the public and a light lunch will follow the presentation.

- Employment Opportunity (Utah): The Utah State Historic Preservation Office has a unique opportunity for a qualified individual to serve as the SHPO representative in the Vernal BLM field office. Please see the following link to apply:

- Shovel Bums Back on the Archaeology Channel: Field archaeologists spend lots of their down time swapping stories and sharing laughs about events and circumstances on field projects. We're happy to share some of these laughs with you in Shovel Bum Joins the Army, the latest video feature on our nonprofit streaming-media Web site, The Archaeology Channel

Monday, October 29, 2007

Picture Canyon Preservation, NPS Online Texts, Native Eyes Film Festival

Southwestern Archaeology Making the News - A Service of the Center for Desert Archaeology

- Flagstaff Preservationists Trying to Protect Picture Canyon: Those attempting to keep east Flagstaff archeology site Picture Canyon off-limits to developers say they made gains on Friday when a state committee dubbed the canyon a state historic site. It will now be up to the feds to decide whether to dub the petroglyph-filled canyon a National Historic Site. It could also be named a national landmark. "It was really good news," Coconino County Supervisor Deb Hill said of Friday's decision by the state's Arizona Historic Sites Review Committee in Phoenix. - Arizona Daily Sun

- National Park Service History Texts Placed Online: Today, roughly 60% of the 391 park areas administered by the National Park Service have been set aside as symbols and evidence of our history and prehistory. Many of our natural parks contain historic places that represent important aspects of that history. Collectively, these places present an American history textbook, a textbook that educates us about the people, events, buildings, objects, landscapes, and artifacts of the American past and about the aspirations and actions that produced those tangible survivors. The National Park Service's history web site represents varying aspects of this history.

- Arizona State Museum Hosts Native Eyes Film Showcase: Arizona State Museum and the Hanson Film Institute, in collaboration with the Film and Video Center of the National Museum of the American Indian, Smithsonian Institution, bring to Tucson the fourth installment of the collaborative project Native Eyes Film Showcase. Native Eyes celebrates the creative work of Native American directors, producers, writers, and actors by presenting their high quality work. The Native Eyes Film Showcase begins on November 7th at 7 p.m. All screenings are free at the Grand Cinemas Crossroads at 4811 East Grant Road (Grant and Swan) in Tucson.

- Employment Opportunity - Great Basin National Heritage Route Executive Director: The newly designated Great Basin National Heritage Route seeks an executive director to assist the management board in developing and implementing a management plan which would market, interpret and preserve cultural resources in the central Great Basin area of White Pine County, Nevada, and Millard County, Utah. The position of executive director will require experience in non-profit management and finances, fundraising, grant writing and grant administration and working with boards, committees and budgets. The executive director must possess significant organizational and communication skills to work productively under the direction of a board of directors which is widespread geographically and represents a variety of heritage and history interests in a two county rural/frontier area of the Great Basin.

Thanks to Brian Kenny for contributions to today's newsletter.

Friday, October 26, 2007

Southwest Symposium Reminder, Tucson Origins Park Planning, New Genetic Research on Peopling of New World

Southwestern Archaeology Making the News - A Service of the Center for Desert Archaeology

- Southwest Symposium Scheduled for January 17-19: 20th Anniversary Southwest Symposium,Movement, Connectivity, and Landscape Change, January 17-19, 2008. The Southwest Symposium was launched twenty years ago by Charles Redman and Paul Minnis to provide an opportunity for archaeologists to discuss current ideas and develop new networks for research in the American Southwest. From the beginning, this biennial symposium has been organized to explore a limited number of topics in substantial depth and to provide considerable time for discussion among all participants. The 2008 symposium will begin with a session that honors our 20th anniversary. In this opening session, the topics from the first Southwest Symposium (foraging, mobility and migration, social power and interaction, the protohistoric, and the history of Southwest archaeology) will be revisited by leading scholars in the field. They will look back over the last two decades of our accomplishments and forward toward new directions.

- The Impact of Genetic Diversity in the Peopling of the New World: Questions about human migration from Asia to the Americas have perplexed anthropologists for decades, but as scenarios about the peopling of the New World come and go, the big questions have remained. Do the ancestors of Native Americans derive from only a small number of “founders” who trekked to the Americas via the Bering land bridge? How did their migration to the New World proceed? What, if anything, did the climate have to do with their migration? And what took them so long? - Science Daily

- Lecture on Four Corners Archaeology in Denver: Mark Varien will present "Four Corners, Then and Now", at the Denver Museum of Nature and Science. Tuesday, October 30, 7:00 p.m. in the Ricketson Auditorium.

- Final Plans for Tucson Origins Park Presented at Open House: More than 100 people packed two meeting rooms Wednesday evening at the Tucson Convention Center for the fourth open house for Tucson Origins, where construction on a replica Mission San Agustín is set to start in January. "It's not just a master plan," Rio Nuevo director Greg Shelko said. "This is the pieces of the puzzle really coming together."

- Tohono O'odham Nation to Assist Exhibit Development at Tucson Origins Heritage Park: The Tohono O’odham Nation has awarded more than $65,000 to the Arizona State Museum to support an internship and Native American consultations for the design of an exhibit in the Tucson Origins Heritage Park. The park, known as TOHP, is a significant part of the planned 30-acre cultural campus in downtown Tucson, and will be adjacent to several museums, including the Arizona State Museum, the University of Arizona Science Center, the Arizona History Museum and the Tucson Children’s Museum.

- Visiting Besh-Be-Gowah: In its heyday, from about 1225 to 1400, the village of Besh-Ba-Gowah was home to 350 people - hunters, gatherers and remarkably sophisticated farmers who grew corn, squash, beans and cotton and other crops, irrigating when possible and dry farming when not. They understood flood-plain farming techniques. - Arizona Republic

- Snowbowl Sewage case to get Second Review: Without comment, the full 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals has agreed to review the findings of three of its judges rejecting a claim by Snowbowl that it would shut down if it does not get permission to use sewage to create artificial snow. The panel had concluded there is "no compelling governmental interest" in having artificial snow on the San Francisco Peaks - and specifically on the federal land where the operation is located. - The Arizona Republic

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Bill to Enlarge Mesa Verde, Big Demolition Gaffe in Tucson

Southwestern Archaeology Making the News - A Service of the Center for Desert Archaeology

- Bill to Expand Mesa Verde National Park Passes House or Representatives Vote: A bill sponsored by Rep. John Salazar authorizing the expansion of Mesa Verde National Park unanimously passed the U.S. House of Representatives on Monday. The Mesa Verde National Park Boundary Expansion Act of 2007, sponsored by Salazar, will next go to the U.S. Senate for a vote. - The Cortez Journal

- Contractor for City of Tucson Mistakenly Demolishes Historic Structure: A historically significant U.S. Magnetic Observatory building that was supposed to be left standing in Udall Park while others around it were demolished was mistakenly taken down.
The gaffe by a city contractor leaves only four of the original 15 buildings standing.

- Lecture Tonight on Mesa Verde Migrations at the Denver Museum of Nature and Science: William Lipe will present "Four Corners, Then and Now." Late in the 13th century, the cliff dwellings and pueblos of the Mesa Verde region fell silent as a population of thousands melted away within a generation. Where did all these people go? Ricketson Auditorium, $12 member, $15 nonmember. - Denver Museum of Nature and Science

- Tucson to Dedicate Cultural Walk at the Julian Wash Site: According to a news release, the cultural walk project is located on an archaeologically-significant Hohokam village that used to be the St. Josephs Children’s Home location. The Julian Wash Cultural Walk now contains landscaping that avoids any sensitive archeological areas. It will also offer visitors a multi-use path, an interpretive path with educational signs and displays, ramadas and benches. -

- Arizona State Museum Library Celebrates its 50th Year: ASM is celebrating the 50th anniversary of its renowned library with a year’s worth of special events. Join us for the kick-off event and enjoy guest speakers, tours of the building’s architectural features, an unveiling of a newly designed on-line catalog, and a “retiring” of the old card catalog. The event is free and open to the public. Donations requested at event will help fund the library's future upgrades.
Saturday, October 27th, from 1 to 4 PM.

-Employment Opportunity, (Washington DC): The ACHP is seeking qualified applicants to fill the position of Native American Program Assistant in the Native American Program. The program is responsible for advising and assisting federal agencies, Indian tribes, Native Hawaiian organizations and others regarding tribal and Native Hawaiian consultation in the Section 106 process. Applications are being accepted through Thursday, November 15, 2007.

Monday, October 22, 2007

SRI Cemetery Excavation Gets Expensive, More on the Road to Chaco, Parking Lot Excavation in Phoenix

Southwestern Archaeology Making the News - A Service of the Center for Desert Archaeology

- Costs Mount on Tucson's Joint-Courts Cemetery Excavation: he dead buried under downtown are long gone, but they left behind quite a bill. Pima County has sunk almost $15 million into the project to unearth and rebury the deceased, most of whom have lain for over a century in what was then the official cemetery of a territorial town but are now beneath city streets and downtown buildings.

- Parking Lot Excavation Reveals Phoenix History: The prehistoric pit houses, a century-old cosmetic-cream jar and antique bricks tell the story of the first merchants in downtown Phoenix. Archaeologists earlier this month found those artifacts deep beneath the downtown parking lot where on Monday crews will begin building a $900 million hub of shops, offices and restaurants.

- Lecture on Native American Painting, This Friday at the Arizona State Museum: The inaugural lecture of the Arnold and Doris Roland Distinguished Speaker Series features scholar and author J. J. Brody, professor emeritus of art history, University of New Mexico. Dr. Brody will speak on early 20th century Native American painting. The talk will be held at the Marriott University Park (880 E. Second St.). 6:30 p.m. reception, 7 p.m. lecture. Free and open to the public. Sponsored and produced by the Friends of the ASM Collections.

- Plans to Encapsulate Historic Tempe Homestead Rejected by Arizona SHPO: The developer that wants to build a high-rise building that would partially hang over Monti's La Casa Vieja steakhouse faced the Tempe Historic Preservation Commission Thursday evening and was sent "back to the drawing board." La Casa Vieja, once home to the Hayden family that founded Tempe, was built in 1873 and is considered one of the most historic buildings in the Valley. But the development team wishing to put a high rise above Monti's - while preserving the old building - was told by the commission that plans to have the new structure overhang the Monti's site didn't sit well.

- Debate over Paving the Road to Chaco Continues: Several concerned New Mexicans gathered Thursday night at the San Juan County Commission chambers and voiced concerns regarding potential improvements to County Road 7950, which provides primary vehicle access to Chaco Culture National Historical Park.

- Tohono O'odham open Village Trading Post: The gallery will present American Indian works by pre-eminent artists who have created a name for themselves throughout the world, artists like Navajo stone sculptor Lance Yazzie and his father, famed stone and bronze sculptor Larry Yazzie. Celebrated O'odham basket weaver Terrol Dew Johnson has several pieces on display, and New Mexico jewelry designer Elloise Padilla will showcase her serpentine and turquoise necklaces, each piece of which was handcrafted, said Travis P. Nabahe, CEO of the development authority.

- Graduate Student Focuses Research on Western Puebloan Sandals: His focus is on Yucca sandals he said, most likely from the Pueblo 1 period. The Pueblo 1 period is from approximately 700 to 900 AD, according to an article by Dr. Linda Cordell, archaeologist and former director of the Colorado University Museum. Yoder said not much is known about the sandals, how they were made or where they were found in the Anasazi region. This is the information he is trying discover. Additionally, he is studying them to see if there are different types of these sandals that might allow him to associate different groups of people. - Hurricane Valley Journal

- November Centennial Events at Gila Cliff Dwellings: Everyone is invited up to Gila Cliff Dwellings National Monument for the official centennial ceremony on Saturday, November 17, 2007. Natural and cultural demonstrations will take place from 11:00 am-1:00 pm. A free lunch will be served at 12:30 pm. The ceremony (which includes assembling a time capsule of modern artifacts to be opened at the 150th Anniversary in 2057) begins at 2:00 pm, followed by cake, ice cream, and special tours through the monument’s archeological sites. The trail through the dwellings will be open from 9:00 am – 4:00 pm, and the admission fee is waived for the day. Call 505-536-9461 to RSVP for lunch by November 10.
Http:// - MS Word Document

- Travelogue, Betatakin and Navajo National Monument: On a crisp, fall-like Saturday morning, Cassandra Parrish leads five hikers into a deep, salmon-to-red tinted canyon south of the Arizona-Utah border. Their goal is Betatakin, an ancient pueblo nestled precariously inside a stunningly cavernous grotto.,5143,695219267,00.html

- Employment Opportunity, Cultural Resources Programs Manager (Pima County): Assists Cultural Resources Manager or Program Manager in planning, organizing, coordinating, and administering activities of the Cultural Resources and Historic Preservation Office within Pima County. - MS Word Document

- Employment Opportunity, Field Technicians and Crew Chief (Phoenix): PaleoWest Solutions in Archaeology is seeking to fill positions in the greater Phoenix area for one crew chief and five field technicians for archaeological survey and excavation projects beginning October 22, and extending at through the fall. A Bachelors degree is required. Crew chiefs must also have experience and provide references related to excavating and effective interpreting of Hohokam habitation sites. Crew members must have excavation or survey expertise. Contact PaleoWest Solutions in Archaeology. 928.776.7253 office | 602.980.6687 cell | 866-706-7253 toll-free