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