NEXT MEETING: Wednesday, July 17, 2024, 6:00PM: members and non-members are welcome to the GCAS monthly meeting at the Roundup Lodge in San Lorenzo (Mimbres Valley). We start at 6PM with a potluck - bring your own plates & utensils, and a dish for yourself or to share with with what we expect to be a larger than usual number of guests, including the starving students of the Preservation Archaeology Museum Curation and Survey Field School. Let's feed these folks well, people! At about 6:30PM we will have a brief business meeting followed immediately by our featured speaker, Archaeology Southwest's Karen Schollmeyer PhD, who will share updates on her and her field school team's work at the WNMU Museum which includes curating the artifacts comprising the NAN Ranch collection. Come meet the next generation of archaeologists and learn about the latest activity at our own WNMU Museum. In order to offer our members a safe and comfortable experience at our in-person meetings the GCAS follows CDC and New Mexico Department of Health guidelines for indoor gatherings including masking, distancing, and vaccinations. We recommend each attendee take the precautions they feel are appropriate for themselves.

NEXT FIELD TRIP: Sunday, August 4, 2024, 10:00AM: The GCAS visits Treasure Hill, 4 miles east of Silver City in the Arenas Valley and about 1 mile south of Highway 180. This is a heavily looted site of about 100 pueblo rooms. We'll meet at the site's gate at 10:00 AM sharp but this is a sensitive location so please contact trip leader Marianne Smith ([email protected] or phone/text 772-529-2627) for specific directions. Toward the end of the field trip we're asking each GCAS member to grab one garbage bag that we will provide to pick up whatever trash they can on their way back to their vehicle. Leave the bags at the gate or toss into the designated pickup truck that will go to the landfill later. Bring work gloves for protection from broken glass. Instead of our usual on-site picnic, interested members are welcome to regroup for lunch - Dutch treat - at the Whiskey Creek Zocalo on Highway 180, a short 1-1/2 mile drive from the Treasure Hill site. As always, plan accordingly with appropriate sun protection and water, and to protect vulnerable resources we offer our field trips to members only. Members’ invited guests are welcome as long as they ride in that member’s vehicle.

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May 2020

Our Latest Acquisition

Vidal coverA few months ago in the pre-COVID-19 days when the world was young, a majority of the GCAS general membership approved the pre-publication purchase of a special volume for the GCAS Library. We are thrilled to now add to our research library, The Vidal Site: An Isolated Great Kiva in Heaton Canyon Near Gallup, New Mexico.

Published by the Archaeological Society of New Mexico and edited by Frances Joan Mathien, this compelling book (ASNM Special Publication Series No. 7) comprises reports of the surveys, excavations, and materials analyses directed by Richard A. Bice and Phyllis S. Davis at the Vidal Site from 1979 through 1993.

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Papas Nativas: Native Potatoes

Moray_Webready_002-800x533Some time ago there was a post on this here website discussing the consumption of wild potatoes in the US Southwest by native populations as early as 8000-9000 BCE. It appears similar activity was occurring far to the south, in Andean cultures. Emergence Magazine provides us a "Potato Travelogue" of Peru. The investigative authors describe that:

Approximately 8,000 years ago, the first wild potatoes were harvested from the high-altitude soils surrounding Lake Titicaca at the foot of the Andes Mountains. Since then, more than 4,000 varieties of native potatoes—known in Peru as papas nativas—have been cultivated in the Andean highlands. On a month-long journey through Peru, we encounter the diverse flavors, cultural significance, agricultural challenges, history, and daily uses of papas nativas.

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Re-Post: Marilyn Markel Earns Crabtree Award

IMG_0287 Marilyn Markel with Pat GilmanThe GCAS is very proud to announce to all of cyberspace that the Society for American Archaeology has awarded our very own Marilyn Markel their 2020 Crabtree Award for outstanding Avocational Archaeologist. The SAA will present the award to Marilyn at their annual meeting, to be held this year in Austin, Texas, from April 22 through April 26.

To be nominated for this honor, a person

"...should have made significant contributions to advance understandings of local, regional, or national archaeology through excavation, research, publication, site or collections preservation, collaboration with the professional community, and/or public outreach."

Marilyn Markel personifies all of the above, as the awards committee acknowledged:

"Marilyn Markel has a deep passion for archaeology and has spearheaded efforts in the Mimbres Valley, New Mexico, to preserve archaeological sites and educate young people of all ages on the value of the archaeological past. She has made significant contributions to our understanding and preservation of Mimbres sites in New Mexico, through over 20 years of volunteer work on university field school excavations, promotion of site protection through stewardship, transforming the local artifact-collecting community into an avocational/professional archaeological society, and educating schoolchildren about the value of archaeological heritage. Ms. Markel has assisted archaeological field schools, preserved sites, published children’s books on archaeology, and created a center devoted to the preservation and interpretation of Mimbres archaeology through educational outreach. Marilyn Markel is highly deserving of the Crabtree Award for her exemplary service to enhancing the preservation and public appreciation of New Mexico’s archaeological past."

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Welcome Today's Guest Blogger, Kyle Meredith!

Our very own GCAS President, Kyle Meredith, has dropped by this part of the blogosphere to take us all on a virtual trip that he and two other hardy GCAS members (plus one mascot) recently took to a petroglyph site near Deming. All text and photos are courtesy of Kyle Meredith. Away we go!

Petroglyph hill - K. MeredithBack in April, Josh and I and Greg went for an overnighter down south of Deming to look for a hill with petroglyphs we had been told about. I located our probable destination on a map and set up a route on my GPS.

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