The 2019 Southwest Kiln Conference will be taking place during the weekend of October 4, 2019 - October 6, 2019 in Globe, Arizona, and everyone is invited. The organizers stress that "...attendance is free and open to the public so come up to Globe and learn about the exciting things being done in the fields of prehistoric pottery replication and experimental archaeology."
On April 27, 2019, the Archaeological Society of New Mexico (ASNM) formally presented four individuals, including the GCAS's favorite Field Trip Coordinator, Greg Conlin, with the Richard A. Bice Achievement Award. This annual award recognizes individuals who have made significant and sustained contributions to advance the purpose of their local archaeological society/organization and the ASNM's goals of documenting, preserving and protecting the archaeological heritage of New Mexico. Nominees do not have to be professional archaeologists, but their achievements and dedication certainly stand out.
In Greg's case, for many years he has been an active member, officer, and Board member of the GCAS. He currently plans and leads our monthly field trips; people may not realize that he actually takes two field trips for every one of ours. He performs reconnaissance of each site shortly before the field trip actually takes place, in order to confirm that our group receives accurate and current road and trail conditions. In addition to all those extra miles, Greg has devoted many years to the New Mexico SiteWatch program, monitoring multiple sites as a Site Steward. Greg joins at least nine other GCAS members who are past Bice Award recipients.
We are proud of you, Greg. Thank you for everything you've done for us!
/s/ webmaster [Photo courtesy of Marilyn Markel]
Torie Grass joins us today to share photos she took on a GCAS field trip to the Rock House Petroglyph Site on April 28, 2019. Torie has been a member and enthusiastic supporter of the GCAS for many years. Most recently, she volunteered her time to help make the April 2019 ASNM annual meeting in Silver City a success.
The Rock House Petroglyph Site is located on New Mexico State Trust Land near a state highway. It sits opposite the Rock House Pueblo Site which fell victim to bulldozers years ago. For years it was known locally as the “Bandito” site because of a large red stereotyped Mexican figure that a vandal had painted over a petroglyph panel. In 2015, the GCAS undertook remediation of the site and safely removed the red barn paint that had defaced the petroglyphs. Torie's photo on the left illustrates a portion of that restored panel. Her photo on the right shows a different area of petroglyphs. In both images, the group demonstrates the preferred Best Practice of taking pictures of ancient symbols without touching or walking on them. When visiting any archaeological site, be as cool as this group is.
Thank you for contributing these photos, Torie!
John has been a member of GCAS for more than 10 years. He grew up in El Paso and worked for 30 years with the Federal Government in the Washington, DC, area before returning to the Southwest in 1995. He has helped with the Cañada Alamosa and other archaeological projects for Human Systems Research in Las Cruces as well as with the Black Mountain and Woodrow Ruin projects for Colorado University.
On Sunday, April 28, 2019, John was one of a group who took advantage of the weekend's ASNM Annual Meeting in Silver City to visit the Kipp Ruin near Deming, New Mexico. This site was first recorded by archaeologists in the early 1900s and is currently owned and managed by the Archaeological Conservancy. Kipp is located on the floodplain of the Mimbres River in Luna County at the eastern edge of the Mimbres region, the northern edge of the Casas Grandes region, and the western edge of the Jornada Mogollon region.
Kipp has pithouse structures that appear to date from 100 BCE to 1000 CE. We see an example of one such structure in John's photo above on the left. Kipp also has a post-1200 CE component that appears to have evidence of all three cultures - Mimbres, Casas Grandes, and Jornada Mogollon - that converged at this location. Evidence includes remnants of Salado polychrome pottery such as the potsherd shown in John's photo over here on the right.
Thank you, John, for sharing your photos with all of cyberspace!
"Living in Sacred Continuum" is an assemblage of Mimbres pottery dating from 1000 CE to 1130 CE, and is now on display at the American Indian Student Center on the New Mexico State University campus in Las Cruces. The exhibit features interpretations of the pottery’s designs by five different Hopi artists with five different points of view. [Photo of the Hopi artists at work - by Atsunori Ito via NMSU. Dr. Arakawa is shown in center background.]
A full schedule of the ASNM annual meeting will be available at the registration desk. In the meantime, here are some starting times for each day's agenda:
Two pertinent items:
Sunday, April 7, 2019, provided fine and sunny weather for a field trip. At least 14 members joined trip leader Greg Conlin on a two-pronged visit to the Old Town archaeological site and later, to the petroglyphs on the Bureau of Land Management's site at Fluorite Ridge. [Tip o' the hat to the GCAS's own Chris Overlock, for sharing the photos in this post!]
Researchers at Washington State University have (re)discovered the oldest tattooing tool in all of western North America. [Photo of tool on right, via Newsweek.] This 3-1/2 inch long, dual-needle tattooing instrument made out of two prickly pear cactus spines bound to a skunkbush sumac stem/handle with yucca fiber, had been excavated in 1972 from a midden at the Turkey Pen archaeological site in southeastern Utah. Based on the tool itself and human coprolites and maize cobs found in the same midden, the find was dated to 79-130 CE, about 2000 years ago during the Basketmaker II period. Similar tattooing tools retrieved from sites throughout the US Southwest were much more recent, having been dated to about 1100-1280CE. In other words, the Turkey Pen artifact now suggests that tattooing in our region had been practiced for at least 1000 years longer than previously believed.