Friday, September 24, 2010

Politics Push Back Bill to Expand Casa Grande Ruins National Monument

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

Politics Push Back Bill to Expand Casa Grande Ruins National Monument
The Casa Grande Ruins National Monument expansion bill (HR 5110) received a substantial majority of votes on Thursday (Sept. 23), with 244 votes for, and 174 votes against. However, the bill was considered under “suspension,” which requires a two-thirds majority. The bill did not reach that threshold, so it failed. - Center for Desert Archaeology = Arizona Republic

Arizona Republic Advocates Expansion of Casa Grande Ruins
The U.S. House of Representatives is taking a recorded vote today on a proposal to expand the boundaries of Casa Grande Ruins National Monument. If any bill should be a slam dunk, this is it. The significance of the site was obvious more than a century ago, when it became America's first archaeological reserve in 1892. It was designated as a national monument in 1918. - Arizona Republic

The Site of a Coronado Skirmish Uncovered in New Mexico
A battleground in the first major conflict between Europeans and Native Americans in what would become the U.S. Southwest is a vacant lot on the west side of Albuquerque. For a century, archaeologists and pot hunters have known of the ruins called Piedras Marcadas ("marked boulders") — once one of at least a dozen thriving Tiwa-speaking villages in the central valley of the Rio Grande, known collectively as Tiguex (pronounced tee-wesh). - Santa Fe New Mexican

Archaeologists Claim Evidence for "Genocide" at Small Pit House Village
Crushed leg bones, battered skulls and other mutilated human remains are likely all that's left of a Native American population destroyed by genocide that took place circa 800 A.D., suggests a new study. The paper, accepted for publication in the Journal of Anthropological Archaeology, describes the single largest deposit to date of mutilated and processed human remains in the American Southwest.

Field School Students Excavate Folsom Site Near Albuquerque
Imagine finding evidence of one of the first human groups known to have traveled through the middle Rio Grande Valley in the Southwestern United States. That’s what students in Anthropology 375/575 did this summer as they excavated a Folsom site on a mesa west of Albuquerque. It was named Deann’s site after Deann Muller, the student who found it during a survey of the area in 2001. - University of New Mexico

Don Garate Passes
Don Garate, a Rio Rico resident known for his colorful depictions of Juan Bautista de Anza II, died Tuesday of brain cancer at his son Gene’s home in Kansas. He was 59. While depicting Anza II, a Spanish captain who led an expedition in 1775 from Tubac to establish the first overland route to present-day San Francisco, Garate appeared in full costume with a red-trimmed navy blue cape and a black hat, sometimes on horseback. - The Nogales International

(Related Story) A Tribute to Don Garate's Final Performance as Juan Bautista De Anza Available on Youtube
F or over 25 years Don Garate has played the role of Juan Bautista de Anza for the National Park Service, Tumacacori National Historic Park. He has embodied the legacy of Anza for us all to enjoy today. Presented here is a five minute tribute to Don excerpted from an in-production video on Anza, "Legacy of a Journey" being prepared for the Park Service for distribution in the summer of 2011.

Paul S. Martin Passes
Paul S. Martin developed the idea that early humans had hunted North America's Ice Age big game, including ground sloths, camels, mammoths and mastodons, to extinction. Paul S. Martin, the University of Arizona geoscientist who developed the idea that overhunting drove North America's large Ice Age mammals extinct, died Sept. 13 at his home in Tucson, Ariz. He was 82.

The Ancient City Underneath Phoenix
My hometown is greater Phoenix. Peel back just the top couple of feet there, and you'll find the remnants of a sprawling society of farmers who lived in adobe villages a thousand years ago.

Native American Cultural Preservation - Without a Casino
Like other native Americans, the Hopi of Arizona have faced adversity, including seeing their homeland, or tutsqua, shrink from more than 18 million acres to 1.5 million acres today. Hopi groups disagree about how to preserve their culture: Build a casino or remain gambling-free? Encourage tourists or restrict them? Their responses have stayed on the conservative side – they have twice voted down building a casino. But now, with the support of their tribal government, the progressive Upper Moenkopi have built the first major Hopi hotel, the Moenkopi Legacy Inn near Tuba City. - The Christian Science Monitor

Astronomy Evening At Gila Cliff Dwellings National Monument
Saturday, October 2, 2010 - Take advantage of New Mexico’s magnificent dark skies by attending the season’s final astronomy evening at Gila Cliff Dwellings National Monument on Saturday, October 2nd beginning at 5:00 p.m. - Ms Word Document\

The Story of George Hubbard Pepper
George Hubbard Pepper (1873-1924) landed a very big job anthropologically speaking. He directed the excavation of one of the wonders of the American West, Pueblo Bonito, the 800-room Native American brick complex built 1200 years ago in the Arizona (sic) desert.

Nanodiamonds Discovered in Greenland Ice Sheet, Contribute to Evidence for Cosmic Impact
Nanosize diamonds have been discovered in the Greenland ice sheet, according to a study reported by scientists in a recent online publication of the Journal of Glaciology. The finding adds credence to the controversial hypothesis that fragments of a comet struck across North America and Europe approximately 12,900 years ago.

National Park's Entrance Fees Waived this Saturday
This Saturday, Sept 25, the National Park Service is offering free access to 392 national parks to commemorate National Public Lands Day, reports the America's Great Outdoors Campaign, a community-based conservation awareness effort.

2011 Pecos Conference to be held on the Arizona Strip
The 2011 Pecos Conference of Southwestern Archaeology will be held in the Kaibab National Forest on the “Arizona Strip,” north and west of the Colorado River, August 11-14. The site is an open park at Mile-and-a-half Lake, 8 miles south of Jacob Lake and 2.5 miles west of SR 67. Jacob Lake is located at the intersection of US 89A and SR67 between Lee’s Ferry and Fredonia. Individuals and organizations interested in assisting in the organization as partners, sponsors, or vendors may contact David Purcell at Additional information will be released as it is available through this channel and the conference website, which is in development. Please prepare for a celebration of the archaeology and history of the Arizona Strip, southwestern Utah, and southern Nevada in the 99th year of Arizona Statehood!

First Archaeology Expo Planning Meeting for the 2011 Arizona Archaeology and Heritage Awareness Month.
This coming Tuesday, October 5, 2010 at 1:00 PM at the Deer Valley Rock Art Center, 3711 W Deer Valley Rd in Glendale, AZ. Please come and share your ideas as the State Historic Preservation Office (SHPO) initiates planning for the 2011 Arizona Archaeology Expo that will be held on March 26-27, 2011 at the Deer Valley Rock Art Center (Center) in Glendale. We will be touring the Center’s grounds, 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 2011 Arizona Archaeology and Heritage Awareness Month public programming. For More Information, Please Contact: Ann Howard, Public Archaeology Programs Manager State Historic Preservation Office 602/542-7138,

Lecture Opportunity: Tubac
The Hohokam Southern Frontier Revisited: Recent Excavations at the Continental Site in Green Valley. Thursday October 14, 2010, 7 PM at Santa Cruz County’s North County Facility 50 Bridge Road, Tubac, Az. This presentation at the Santa Cruz Valley Chapter, Arizona Archaeological Society monthly meeting will illustrate and discuss all of the archaeological investigations that have been conducted at the Continental prehistoric site. Despite the toll that historic and modern developments have taken on this site, more than 100 intact archaeological features have been found still buried there, and 44 of those features have been excavated. southern_hohokam_frontier.pdf

Hiking Opportunity: Chaco Migrants Meet Mountain Mogollon
Saturday, 16 October, 2010. Find out about two great ancestral cultures. Decide if this is where they met, whether they got along, how they differ, and why they chose here. Dittert Site. 4 mile hike. 5 hours. 9 AM El Malpais NCA Ranger Station. Grants, New Mexico. 505.280.2918

Reminder - Only one week left to submit proposals for the Arizona History Conference. Proposals must be submitted by October 1, 2010, to Bruce J. Dinges, c/o Arizona Historical Society, 949 E. 2nd St., Tucson, AZ 85719. Only one proposal per presenter. Include name, address, phone number, and biographical information, along with title of presentation and no more than one page of description.

Thanks to Brian Kreimendahl and Adrianne Rankin for contributing to today's newsletter.