Pat Gilman had no idea that she wanted to be an archaeologist until she took an anthropology class as an undergraduate. Even then, all she knew was that she liked anthropology in general. It took an archaeology field school in the summer that she graduated before she knew that archaeology was the subfield of anthropology that she liked best. A 1974 field project in the Mimbres Valley of southwestern New Mexico under the auspices of the Mimbres Foundation and Dr. Steven LeBlanc was the start of her life-long interest in research and field work in the larger Mimbres region.
Pat’s initial research interests were architecture and the transition that ancient people made from living in pithouses to inhabiting pueblos. Although Mimbres pit structures and pueblos spurred these interests, she did not use Mimbres data for this research. Recently, however, Pat and her colleagues have been investigating two topics – Mimbres chronometrics, specifically the dates of major transitions such as that from pit structures to pueblo and the scarlet macaws in Mimbres sites. She has also published on social variations within the Mimbres region, Mogollon Great Kivas, and Mimbres iconography and religion. Pat is co-author, with Steven LeBlanc, of the 2017 book, Mimbres Life and Society: The Mattocks Site of Southwestern New Mexico, and she is co-editor, with Barbara Roth and Roger Anyon, of the 2018 book, New Perspectives on Mimbres Archaeology.
Pat earned her Ph.D. from the University of New Mexico. She recently retired from the Department of Anthropology at the University of Oklahoma where she taught for 25 years, and she continues to do Mimbres research.
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