Friday, April 3, 2009

Clovis News, Archaeology Cafe in Tucson, V-Bar-V Ranch Petroglyphs

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

- Interpretations of Colorado Clovis Cache Continue to Evolve: In the University of Colorado press release, Yohe says the discovery of the protein residue caused the investigators to change their minds about the purpose of the cache. Initially, they suspected it was a ritual deposit, but because some of the tools had been used, they decided it was a utilitarian cache. According to Bamforth, some ancient hunter buried the items, "fully expecting to come back at a later date and retrieve them." It's certainly possible that the artifacts represent this kind of cache, but I think it's premature to discard the idea that the artifacts are the remains of an Ice Age ceremony. - Columbus Dispatch

- Did Anthrax Impact Clovis Populations? Humans were dying of anthrax in North America much earlier than thought - perhaps after scavenging the remains of infected animals while migrating from Asia during the Ice Age-a new study says. "We've
always thought that anthrax was an Old World disease that was brought to the New World by Europeans" around 1500, said study coauthor Paul Keim of Northern Arizona University. But the new report suggests that ancient humans entering the continent thousands of years earlier imported the disease after crossing the Bering land bridge, which once connected present-day Alaska and eastern Siberia. - National Geographic News

- Archaeology Cafe - Tucson's Neon Legacy: The Center for Desert Archaeology and Casa Vicente invite you to the seventh meeting of Archaeology Café, a casual, happy hour-style discussion forum dedicated to promoting community engagement with cultural and scientific research. The next Archaeology Café will convene on Tuesday, April 7, 2009. This month, consultant Demion Clinco discusses the historic events that led to the local development and demise of U.S. Highway Route 80, the remnant of which is better known to Tucsonans as "Miracle Mile." This historically significant, all-weather, coast-to-coast auto route was among the first U.S. highways commissioned in 1926. It stretched from San Diego, California, to Tybee Island just east of Savannah, Georgia--ocean to ocean. In Tucson, it was a thriving commercial corridor up through the mid-20th century. Demion's presentation will be based, in part, upon a historic context study submitted to the City of Tucson Department of Urban Planning and Design as part of the Oracle Area Revitalization Plan. Come settle in with a drink and a plate of delicious tapas at downtown Tucson's own Casa Vicente. We meet the first Tuesday of each month at 6:00 p.m.; presentations begin at 6:15 p.m. Our forum opens with a brief, informal presentation, followed by a question and answer period. Moderator Doug Gann then commences spirited but focused discussion.

- Arizona's V-Bar-V Ranch is a National Treasure: As you zoom along Interstate 17 north of Camp Verde, you'd probably never guess that one of Arizona's largest, and least known, petroglyph sites lies just a few miles off the freeway. The V-Bar-V Heritage Site, which holds more than 1,000 petroglyphs, is the largest-known petroglyph site in the Verde Valley and one of the best preserved in the state.

- Native Scholarships Available at Crow Canyon: Full scholarships are available for American Indian students who attend the Crow Canyon Archaeological Center’s summer archaeology camps or field school in Cortez, Colo. These programs offer opportunities for students to learn about the cultural chronology of the Four Corners area, participate in archaeological field and laboratory work and visit archaeological sites. Any American Indian student from any tribe in the United States can apply.

- Historic Documents Workshop to be Held in Conjunction with Arizona History Conference: Please join the Friends of Arizona Archives (FAzA) for an archives workshop that will be held in conjunction with the Arizona History Convention in Prescott, Arizona. The Preserving Photographs and Documents workshop is on Thursday, April 23, 2009. Registration for the workshop is now taking place. The deadline for registration is April 14. The Pre-conference Workshop "Preserving Photographs and Documents" will take place Thursday, April 23, 2009, 8:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. (with a lunch break) Sharlot Hall Museum Library & Archives. Registration deadline: April 14. Cost: $25 for FAzA members; $35 for non-members. Make checks payable and mail to: Friends of Arizona Archives, P.O. Box 64532, Phoenix, AZ 85082-4532. For information, contact Doug Kupel, FAzA President, (602) 380-9900; or e-mail

- Casa Grande Neighborhood Declared Historic District: After several years of work, Casa Grande's Evergreen Historic District has been placed on the National Register of Historic Places. That makes many homeowners in the district eligible to apply for property tax breaks of 35 to 45 percent, depending upon whether the home has kept its original appearance, the Arizona State Historic Preservation Office said. - Tri Valley Central

- Bay Area Native Americans Strike Back Against "Burning Men" and the Commodification of Native Cultures: There was supposed to be a "private" Burner party last Saturday night at the Bordello in Oakland, complete with three hundred guests, twenty DJs spinning thumping techno and bass, dancers, a fashion show, micro-massages, raw food, an absinthe bar, and coconuts. Instead, the event ended in tears. More than fifty Bay Area Native American rights activists converged on the historic East Oakland property at 9:30 p.m. to ensure the shutdown of popular Burning Man group Visionary Village's "Go Native!" party. The fired-up Hopis, Kiowas and other tribal members spent more than four hours lecturing the handful of white, college-class Burners about cultural sensitivity until some of them simply broke down crying. - East Bay Express

- Oral History Project Preserves the Stories of Camp Navajo: Stories of Native American workers at Camp Navajo, Ariz., will be a part of the site's historical record forever. Camp Navajo Garrison Training Center and the Arizona Army National Guard (ARNG) have a richer understanding of their own history thanks to the Camp Navajo Cultural Resources Management Program oral history project. The oral history project began as an effort to mitigate range development impacts on Indian Village, established for the native American crews who helped construct the installation in the 1940s. It included documenting the experiences and history of the Native Americans who helped build Camp Navajo. More than 200 individuals with connections to Native American workers participated in the oral history project.

- The Story of the Ancestors of Modern Puebloan Peoples Featured on the Archaeology Channel: Ancestral Puebloan people in Colorado and Utah developed a remarkable culture and agricultural adaptation before moving their settlements southward centuries ago. For the past hundred years, archaeologists and Native people have collaborated to paint the picture and tell the story of the vibrant culture that once thrived here. The Anasazi Heritage Center of the Bureau of Land Management produced this film to share that story. This compelling story is the subject of The Cultural Heritage of the Great Sage Plain, the latest video feature on our nonprofit streaming-media Web site, The Archaeology Channel.

- Reminder, Deadline Approaching for Nominations for Arizona Awards in Public Archaeology: - The Arizona Governor's Archaeology Advisory Commission's 2009 awards can be presented to individuals, organizations, and/or programs that have significantly contributed to the protection and preservation of, and education about, Arizona's non-renewable archaeological resources. These awards can include the following categories of individuals or organizations that are worthy of recognition for their public service/education endeavors: 1) professional archaeologists, 2) avocational archaeologists, 3) Site Stewards, 4) Tribes, 5) private, non-profit entities, 6) government agencies, and 7) private or industrial development entities. In addition, the Commission would like to make an award to an individual for special or lifetime achievement. (Specific criteria must be met in order for a nominee to qualify for a given award category -- these criteria are spelled out on the Call for Nominations.) The deadline is April 14, 2009, so we hope to get your nomination soon!

Thanks to Terry Colvin for contributions to today's newsletter.