NEXT MEETING: Wednesday, February 15, 2023, 5:00PM: The GCAS monthly IN-PERSON general meeting meets again at 2045 Memory Lane in Silver City, New Mexico. about a block or two south of the intersection of Memory Lane and Hwy 180. Doors open at 5PM for folks to socialize and get settled. Light refreshments provided and OK to bring your own light snacks or handy meal (burrito, etc.) and beverage. Meeting starts at 5:30PM sharp with a brief to nonexistent business meeting followed at 5:45PM by our featured speaker, the redoubtable archaeologist Chris Adams. Chris will showcase for us the Feather Imagery Depicted on Mimbres Pottery. Expect meeting to adjourn about 7:00PM. As ever, in order to offer our members a safe and comfortable experience the GCAS follows CDC and New Mexico Department of Health guidelines for indoor gatherings including masking, distancing, and vaccinations. We recommend all attendees follow the same.

NEXT FIELD TRIP: February 5, 2023, we will meet at 10:00 AM at the MAREC HQ at the Mimbres Culture Heritage Site. We will have the Allard Bartlett and George Coleman collections on display with other select items including the GCAS's replica Clovis tool kit and a comparative sampling of artifact seashells and their modern counterparts. Possible trip to the nearby McAnally site may be included!

Previous month:
March 2019
Next month:
May 2019

April 2019

GCAS Field Trip to Old Town and Fluorite Ridge

04_07_2019 Old Town CO IMG_5402Sunday, 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!]

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Old School Tattoo Tool

image from s.newsweek.comResearchers 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.

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Deferred, For All the Right Reasons

h/t to the GCAS's own Chris Overlock for hipping us to today's news in the Chicago Tribune.

The Art Institute of Chicago has indefinitely postponed the exhibition they had planned for May, 2019, of a private individual's collection of some 70 pieces of Mimbres pottery. The article indicates the Art Institute came to realize that grave goods comprise the majority of this private collection. Such items are inappropriate for public display.

“It’s not art,” said Patty Loew, director of Northwestern University’s Center for Native American and Indigenous Research, who...has followed the controversy within the community of Native American scholars. “If someone dug up your great-grandmother’s grave and pulled out a wedding ring or something that had been buried with her, would you feel comfortable having that item on display?”

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